Political debates are good even when they’re bad. Even when candidates are cringe-worthy, they’re cringe-worthy in public view. And voters learn about all the candidates, not just new ones. In the United States, for example, Hillary Clinton has been center stage in political life for 24 years. Donald Trump is the very definition of “overexposed.” Still, the debates tell us new things about them — their positions, temperament, grace under pressure (or lack thereof), charisma and political skill.
How much more could voters benefit from debates in countries where they know next to...
IPA founder Dean Karlan writes in Scientific American on The Way to Help the Poor. He reviews what we've learned from the research, how he got interested in poverty reesarch, and the latest promising findings.
The New York Times business columnist Eduardo Porter reviews research dispelling negative impacts of welfare payments to the poor. IPA's work is among the studies showing positive effects of cash transfers.
The Economist reports on IPA's six-country study findings on helping the ultrapoor, those making under $1.25 a day. The six-pronged approach showed strong returns in gains for the participants, even a year after the program ended. The story also describes IPA's fndings from Uganda, on a project that helped women earn a living in the post-conflict context.
IPA President and founder Dean Karlan has an op-ed in Reuters titled: New data reveals which approach to helping the poor actually works. He reviews what we know from the 6-country randomized controlled trials published in Science, testing the Graduation approach to helping those who live on less than $1.25 per day.
Longer-term research into anti-poverty interventions is rare, but it exists for cash transfers. A 2013 study in Uganda found that people who received cash enjoyed a 49 percent earnings boost after two years, and a 41 percent increase after four years, compared to people who hadn't gotten a transfer. Another study in Sri Lanka found rates of return averaging 80 percent after five years. In Uganda, not only were the cash recipients better off, but their number of hours worked and labor productivity actually increased.
In The New York Times, Nicholas Kristof writes about IPA's Graduating the Ultra Poor studies recently published in Science.
May 15, 2015 NEW HAVEN CT - A new six-country study shows a comprehensive approach for the ultra-poor, the approximately one billion people who live on less than $1.25 a day, boosted livelihoods, income, and health. Published in Science (available here), the research tested the effectiveness of an approach known as the “Graduation model” in six countries by following 21,000 of the world’s poorest people for three years. The data show this approach led to large and lasting impacts on their standard of living.
Previous efforts by governments and aid groups to reduce poverty among the...
Gawker's Hamilton Nolan writes "Poor people do not just blow any money they get." He reviews IPA's evaluation of GiveDirectly (here, and more description here), finding that poor Kenyans used unconditional cash transfers effectively, rather than on temptation goods like alchohol. A discussion of the broader implications in the New York Times by IPA researcher Chris Blattman of Columbia University is here.
Researcher Johannes Haushofer has an article in the July/August issue of Foreign Affairs about the latest research on the psychology of poverty. More information about the GiveDirectly study mentioned in the article can be found here.
An ungated reprint of the article is available on the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor's website.
In an op-ed for the New York Times, IPA researcher Chris Blattman raises the idea of cash transfers to the homeless in the United States. Among other cash transfer evidence in developing countries, he cites his work with IPA studying cash transfers to urban youths in Liberia. He also discusses a pair of studies in Uganda: an evaluation of WINGS, a cash transfer program for women, and a study of YOP, a similar program for rural youths.
Blattman posted some further thoughts on his blog. You can also read his article on cash transfers in developing countries in the May/June issue of...
Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes writes about GiveDirectly for Four Seasons Magazine. In the article, Hughes praises the role of evidence for giving, specifically citing GiveDirectly's and IPA's evaluation of it. More coverage of IPA's evaluation of GiveDirectly is here.