Download

In most societies, a small number of people commit the most serious violence. Short-term studies have shown that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can reduce such antisocial behaviors. These behavior changes may be temporary, however, especially from therapy on its own. This is unsettled, however, for there has been little randomized, long-term research. We follow 999 highrisk men in Liberia 10 years after randomization into either: 8 weeks of a therapy; a $200 grant; both; or a control group. A decade later, both therapy alone and therapy with economic assistance produce dramatic reductions in antisocial behaviors. Drug-selling and participation in thefts and robberies, for example, fall by about half. These impacts are greatest among the highest-risk men. The effects of therapy alone, however, are smaller and more fragile. The effects of therapy plus economic assistance are more sustained and precise. Since the cash did not increase earnings for more than a few months, we hypothesize that the grant, and the brief legitimate business activity, reinforced the habit formation embodied in CBT. Overall, results suggest that targeted CBT plus economic assistance is an inexpensive and effective way to prevent violence, especially when policymakers are searching for alternatives to aggressive policing and incarceration.

Country:
Type:
Working Paper
Date:
August 02, 2022
DOWNLOAD

Innovations for Poverty Action’s Peace & Recovery (P&R) competitive research fund supports randomized evaluations and related research on reducing violence and fragility, promoting peace, and preventing, managing, and recovering from crises. The program supports policy-relevant studies that develop, illustrate, or test fundamental theories of peace, violence, and recovery, especially those that challenge common beliefs, pioneer innovative interventions, and produce evidence where little currently exists. To date, we have funded over 80 projects in approximately 30 countries.

 

Program area:
Type:
Brief
Date:
June 23, 2022
DOWNLOAD

In Liberia, an 8-week CBT program paired with cash transfers, called the Sustainable Transformation for Youth in Liberia (STYL) program, successfully reduced criminal, violent, and other antisocial behaviors over a ten-year period. The STYL program, developed by the local community organization Network for Empowerment & Progressive Initiative (NEPI), involved therapy led by reformed street youth and ex-combatants. The program was low-cost, with a budget of $530 US per participant for CBT, cash, and administration.

Country:
Program area:
Type:
Brief
Date:
June 06, 2022
Spanish

A medida que los patrones de migración cambian, se necesitan más pruebas del impacto de los programas de regularización en los países en desarrollo. En Colombia, los investigadores evaluaron el impacto de un programa de permisos temporales de trabajo y residencia para los migrantes venezolanos. Los resultados muestran que el programa de permisos tuvo efectos positivos significativos en el empleo, el bienestar y la resiliencia de los migrantes.

Country:
Program area:
Topics:
Type:
Brief
Date:
May 06, 2022
Spanish

Los migrantes desplazados que se establecen en países de acogida pueden encontrar numerosas barreras para acceder a programas que podrían proporcionarles un gran alivio y alojamiento. Estas barreras incluyen poco conocimiento acerca de los programas, desconfianza en el gobierno y cuellos de botella en el proceso de registro. En Colombia, los migrantes venezolanos enfrentan estas barreras al registrarse en un programa de regularización del estatus migratorio que les otorga acceso a los mercados laborales formales y servicios sociales. ¿El proporcionar información a los migrantes sobre los programas de protección social puede contribuir a superar las barreras al registro y aumentar las tasas de aceptación de estos programas?

Country:
Type:
Brief
Date:
May 04, 2022
Download

This paper examines the effects of a government regularization program offered to half a million Venezuelan refugees in Colombia. For this purpose, 2,232 surveys of refugee families were collected and used to compare refugees who arrived in Colombia around a specified eligibility date in 2018. The analysis finds that program beneficiaries experienced improvements in consumption (60 percent), income (31 percent), physical and mental health (1.8 sd), registration rates in the system that assesses vulnerability and awards public transfers (40 pp), and financial services (64.3 pp), relative to other refugees. The program also induced a change in labor formalization of 10 pp.

Country:
Program area:
Topics:
Type:
Working Paper
Date:
May 04, 2022
English

Through our work with partners in Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) and globally, IPA has succeeded in finding organizations with innovative solutions for reducing crime and violence, and working with them to refine, pilot, scale, and evaluate their programs. IPA has also worked with governments in the region to support, design, and test new strategies to address their security challenges. Our experience has led us to believe that tackling crime and violence in the region requires more than identifying programs to evaluate. Rather, we must develop long-term, iterative partnerships with local actors that identify the critical sources of insecurity, and design, pilot, evaluate, and scale effective solutions.


A través de nuestro trabajo con socios en América Latina y el Caribe y en el resto del mundo, IPA ha logrado encontrar organizaciones con soluciones innovadoras para reducir el crimen y la violencia, y trabajar con ellas para refinar, evaluar y expandir sus programas. Desde IPA, también hemos trabajado con los gobiernos de la región para apoyar, diseñar y evaluar nuevas estrategias para abordar sus desafíos de seguridad. Nuestra experiencia nos ha llevado a creer que para combatir el crimen y la violencia en la región se requiere más que evaluar intervenciones. Más bien, debemos desarrollar alianzas iterativas a largo plazo con actores locales que identifiquen las fuentes críticas de inseguridad y diseñen, pongan a prueba, evalúen y lleven a escala soluciones efectivas.

Program area:
Topics:
Type:
Brief
Date:
May 04, 2022
Download

Organised criminal activities, by their nature, are hard to measure. Administrative data are often missing, problematic, or misleading. Moreover, organised criminal activities are under-reported, and under-reporting rates may be greatest where gangs are strongest. Researchers hoping to quantify organised crime systematically face daunting challenges. Collecting information on organised crime is inherently a slow process of cautious trial and error. It will vary from city to city, and typically within a city as well. Dozens of qualitative and quantitative researchers have shown that this can be done with care, ethically, and with adequate protection for human subjects. What they all have in common is that they commit themselves to a place, and they all take their time. While there are risks, the benefits can be enormous. The information these investigators collect is often rare and invaluable. Officials and policymakers commonly have little insight into criminal organisations, with terrible consequences for policy, be it inaction, mediocrity, or adverse and unintended consequences. Here we draw on our experience in Colombia, Brazil, and Liberia of collecting systematic data on illicit activities and armed groups, in order to share our learning with other researchers or organisations that fund research in this area, who may find this useful for their own research. We address: first steps before asking questions, common challenges and solutions, and alternative sources. Our work thus far emphasises the relevance of deep qualitative work to identify local partners; the need for intense piloting of survey instruments and a close oversight of survey firms, ranging from how they hire enumerators to how they plan and implement field work; the power of using survey experiments to mitigate and measure measurement error; and the relevance of cross-validating findings with complementary data sources.

Country:
Topics:
Type:
Published Paper
Date:
May 01, 2022
Download

Organised crime poses one of the greatest threats to national security and development in the 21st century. Despite this, most policy, data collection, and scholarly research focuses on individuals and disorganised violence. Our work addresses several critical gaps in knowledge: 1. What are the incentives for gangs to engage in violence and socially costly behaviour? 2. Which are the trade-offs that practitioners face when deciding how to engage with organised violence? 3. What type of information do relevant decision-makers need to inform their policies? 4. Which are the most relevant tools for tracking down gang behaviour and use of violence?

Country:
Topics:
Type:
Published Paper
Date:
May 01, 2022
English

In the last decade, more than 6 million Venezuelans have left their country. Around 1.85 million are currently in Colombia (GIFMM, 2021). The challenges to socioeconomically integrating this population into the country are innumerable. On February 8, 2021, the Colombian government decided to regularize their immigration status in Colombia and characterize them through the Estatuto Temporal de Protección para Venezolanos (ETPV).

According to Migración Colombia data, in less than a year, more than 1.74 million Venezuelan migrants in Colombia completed the pre-registration process (RUMV) and more than one million completed the biometric registration, necessary steps for the regularization process. The scale and speed of this regularization process are unique in the world, particularly considering that certain social groups, such as irregular migrants, are difficult to reach and characterize. For example, a study conducted by researchers at Yale University found that the population of undocumented migrants living in the United States may be double what is estimated in the decade census (Fazel-Zarandi et al., 2018).

In Colombia, some of the main barriers to characterizing and regularizing the Venezuelan migrant population have been continuous geographic mobility, high levels of socioeconomic vulnerability, precarious access to the Internet and mobile devices, mistrust of the institutions in charge of the process of regularization, fear of arrest or deportation, among others. This policy note highlights the role of community leaders and the means they used in the regularization process.

Country:
Type:
Brief
Date:
April 25, 2022
DOWNLOAD

In Liberia, we have continued our global tradition of rigorous, applicable research by building foundational research capacity and generating evidence to reduce poverty and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Country:
Type:
Brief
Date:
April 11, 2022
Spanish

En la última década, más de 6 millones de venezolanos han abandonado su país. Alrededor de 1.85 millones se encuentran actualmente en Colombia (GIFMM, 2021). Los desafíos para integrar socioeconómicamente a esta población en el país son innumerables. El 08 de febrero de 2021, el gobierno colombiano tomó la decisión de regularizar su estatus migratorio en Colombia y caracterizarlos a través del Estatuto Temporal de Protección para Venezolanos (ETPV). De acuerdo con datos de Migración Colombia, en menos de un año, más de 1.74 millones de migrantes venezolanos en Colombia finalizaron el proceso de pre-registro (RUMV) y más de un millón finalizaron el registro biométrico, pasos fundamentales para el proceso de regularización. La escala y velocidad de este proceso de regularización es única en el mundo, en particular considerando que ciertos grupos sociales, como los migrantes en condición irregular, son difíciles de encontrar y caracterizar. Por ejemplo, un estudio realizado por investigadores de la universidad de Yale encontró que la población de migrantes indocumentados viviendo en los Estados Unidos puede ser el doble de la que se ha estimado a través del censo por décadas (FazelZarandi et al., 2018).

En Colombia, algunas de las principales barreras para caracterizar y regularizar a la población migrante venezolana han sido la constante movilidad geográfica, altos niveles de vulnerabilidad socio-económica, precariedad en el acceso a internet y dispositivos móviles, desconfianza hacia las instituciones encargadas del proceso de regularización, miedo al arresto o a la deportación, entre otras. En esta nota de política pública se destaca el rol que los líderes y lideresas comunitarias y los medios de comunicación que estos utilizan han tenido en el proceso de regularización.

Country:
Type:
Brief
Date:
April 07, 2022

Los barrios marginales y pobres de todo el mundo están ocupados por poderosos grupos criminales que cada vez reclutan más niños y adolescentes. ¿Qué factores llevan a las personas a unirse a estos grupos y cómo pueden los gobiernos evitar el reclutamiento? En Medellín, Colombia, una ciudad caracterizada por una alta presencia de grupos criminales denominados combos, unos investigadores están realizando un estudio para comprender el proceso de reclutamiento, identificar a los niños y los adolescentes en riesgo de ser reclutados y probar diferentes intervenciones para evitar el reclutamiento.

Country:
Topics:
Type:
Brief
Date:
March 29, 2022
Download

This document provides application instructions for the Peace & Recovery (P&R) Program’s call for proposals. Applicants are asked to use the following templates when submitting their applications:

For more information about the request for proposals and P&R Program, read the Guiding Principles and Funding Priorities, and visit the P&R Competitive Fund page.

Program area:
Topics:
Type:
Report
Date:
March 04, 2022
Download

Throughout the developing world, citizens distrust the police and hesitate to bring crimes to their attention—a suboptimal equilibrium that makes it difficult for the police to effectively combat crime and violence. Community policing has been touted as one solution to this problem, but evidence on its efficacy in developing country contexts is sparse. We present results from a large-scale field experiment that randomly assigned a home-grown community policing intervention to police stations throughout rural Uganda. Drawing on administrative crime data and close to 4,000 interviews with citizens, police officers, and local authorities, we show that community policing had limited effects on core outcomes such as crime, insecurity, and perceptions of the police. We attribute these findings to a combination of turnover, treatment non-compliance, and resource constraints. Our study draws attention to the limits of community policing’s potential to reduce crime and build trust in the developing world.

Country:
Type:
Working Paper
Date:
February 01, 2022

Pages