DACA and Human Capital Investment Decisions

Economists love to repeat (over and over) that incentives matter. This leads to one way of examining differences in educational achievement by investigating differences in the return to education among different people. The logic goes as follows: If people like me don’t tend to land high-paying or satisfying jobs after completing some level of education,…

The Effect of School Vouchers on Spiritual Practices

A new working paper, by Daniel Hungerman, Kevin Rinz, and Jay Frymark, entitled, “Beyond the Classroom: The Implications of School Vouchers for Church Finances“, was just released via the NBER working paper series. Although the paper still needs to be peer reviewed, I think it provides valuable insight. Here is the abstract (emphasis added): Governments…

Is Poverty in (2/3 of) Africa Mostly Chronic or Transient?

A lot has been said recently about the reduction in global poverty over the past few decades. Although the positive coverage of these encouraging statistics is certainly justified, important questions still remain. Many of these questions relate to the dynamics of poverty, rather than simply snapshots of static poverty. In short, static poverty measurements (which…

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone! This marks the 5th year of this blog. I initially started this blog as a way to stay in touch with friends and family during my semester studying in Ghana and when I was living and working in Kenya. Since then this space has turned into a professional output of mine.…

RCTs as “Gold Standard”?

Earlier this year I read Tim Ogden’s book entitled, “Experimental Conversations: Perspectives on Randomized Trials in Development Economics“*. Including interviews from the “randomistas” (e.g. Michael Kremer, Ester Duflo, Abijit Bannerjee, Dean Karlan), “skeptics” (e.g. Angus Deaton), and folks not typically associated with RCTs (e.g. Tyler Cowen), it was an interesting book to read. One of…