Kerry Brennan
December 09, 2009
Research on charitable giving by IPA President Dean Karlan and Research Affiliate John List is mentioned in Ian Ayres' review of the new Superfreakonomics.  Randomized field trials get a shout out as well, since Ayres writes that all regressions...
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A coin vendor's wares in Accra.
CREDIT: 
Ryan Knight
Ryan Knight
December 08, 2009
No, this isn't a blog about health care, or even reforming financial regulation. This blog is literally about change that is for sale.
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Nathanael Goldberg
November 30, 2009
It’s no secret few MFIs have had much success mobilizing the “poorest of the poor” into their programs.  This failure has remained a persistent irritant in an otherwise phenomenally successful industry. Microfinance advocates have generally taken...
November 25, 2009
President Obama announced today that he will nominate Elizabeth Littlefield for President of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC).
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Martin Rotemberg
November 20, 2009
Much of the promise of microfinance comes from the fact that people can get loans even if they do not have access to traditional physical collateral such as a house. The idea that people are trustworthy enough to repay loans even without the threat...
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CREDIT: 
USAID
Jonathan Morduch
November 17, 2009
Last week, President Obama nominated Rajiv Shah to be the new USAID Administrator.  We’re a big fan of Shah, in part because without Raj Shah there wouldn’t be a Financial Access Initiative.
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CREDIT: 
Will Boase
Kerry Brennan
November 13, 2009
Recent articles in the Wall Street Journal and Slate Magazine have highlighted work by IPA researchers that has found the effectiveness of text message reminders in encourage people to save. (Check out the project here, here, and here!) 
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Direct local democracy in Indonesia
CREDIT: 
Ben Olken
Kartik Akileswaran
November 09, 2009
One of my new favorite development blogs, Aid Thoughts, had an interesting post recently about what should succeed the Millenium Development Goals once they reach their deadline in 2015.  I was excited to see Matt, the blogger, focus on how to...
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Ryan Knight
November 09, 2009
In the field experiment world, we have a strange name for money grants. We call them "capital drops" - a name that invokes food aid being dropped by air in a relief zone, only we deliver cash instead of food, travel in minibuses instead of...
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Kerry Brennan
November 02, 2009
Reading the complex theories and equations in many academic papers often leaves me wondering, "Wow, who wrote this stuff?"  It's easy to forget that academic economists don't eat math for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, or run regressions on vacation...
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CREDIT: 
Will Boase
Caitlin Weaver
November 02, 2009
FAI just published a new paper that reveals that 2.5 billion adults worldwide do not have a savings or credit account with either a traditional (regulated bank) or alternative financial institution (such as a microfinance institution). And nearly 90...
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CREDIT: 
Karen Macours
Martin Rotemberg
October 30, 2009
It’s remarkably hard to survey people if they have little children around - kids want complete attention. This past week I brought a few big bags of candy to hand out so that the kids would be happy while I was surveying. It was cheap &...
Meredith Startz
October 26, 2009
IPA and like-minded organizations are all about generating evidence on what works in the fight against poverty, so that those who direct funding and design policies and programs can make better-informed decisions. When we think about our audience,...
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CREDIT: 
Abhijit Banerjee
Meredith Startz
October 22, 2009
That's the slogan of Hans Rosling, who runs the website Gapminder.org. I hope you've seen and made use of Gapminder before -- if not, please go rectify the situation immediately. In essence, it's a free online tool for helping people visualize data...
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Caitlin Weaver
October 19, 2009
It’s been great to see business school faculty take an interest in microfinance.  Gabriel Natividad of the strategy group at the Stern School of Business at NYU just published an interesting new paper that links asymmetric information, third-party...
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Abby Gray
October 16, 2009
Meet Jacques.  He’s the Kiva Coordinator at WAGES, a microfinance institution (MFI) based in Togo, West Africa.  Every day, a loan officer hand-delivers a stack of borrower information forms and a USB chip full of photos.  Jacques has trained the...
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CREDIT: 
Will Boase
Meredith Startz
October 14, 2009
In round two of Lisbeth Schorr versus evidence-based policy (see round 1 here), she writes in the Chronicle of Philanthropy that, If government agencies and private grant makers, afraid of being considered not rigorous, unscientific, or wasteful,...
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Kerry Brennan
October 12, 2009
Because of the especially sensitive nature of doing research with human subjects, all of IPA's projects must be approved by an Internal Review Board.  The board makes recommendations for how to ensure that the project environment is as respectful as...
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Delia Welsh
October 09, 2009
A recent Aid Watch blog post from guest blogger, Franck Wiebe (who also happens to be my former boss,) gives a very clear explanation why the “helicopter test” makes a lot of sense in weighing which assistance programs to fund.  He writes,
Meredith Startz
September 30, 2009
The Obama administration – almost as geeked-out a bunch as us – is on board with rigorous evaluation of social policy. Peter Orzag, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, recently wrote that,

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