Two better ways to improve outcomes of small businesses (in Togo and Nigeria)

Two recent and excellent studies offer some important insights into how best to help improve the outcomes of small business owners in developing countries. Both studies evaluate programs motivated by the perception that the traditional way business skills training programs operate could be improved. (For more on this idea, read McKenzie and Woodruff (2013).) The…

[Book Review] Experimental Conversations – Forthcoming in the AJAE

Randomized control trials (RCTs) have taken development economics, and even the broader discipline of economics, by storm. Whether this is “good” or “bad” or just another methodological “fad” largely depends on one’s perspective on development and empirical science. Timothy Ogden, the Managing Director of NYU’s Financial Access Initiative, has documented a number of these perspectives from not…

Debating the DRC’s Development

I’ve been reading a lot more about the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) recently (more on this to come, I hope). To that end, there has been a fascinating debate in Foreign Affairs about the plight of the DRC. It has been a while since the last time I summarized a development debate, but I think…