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Markus Goldstein's blog

Skills and agricultural productivity

Markus Goldstein's picture
Do skills matter for agricultural productivity?   Rachid Laajaj and Karen Macours have a fascinating new paper out which looks at this question.   The paper is fundamentally about how to measure skills better, and they put a serious amount of work into that.    But for those of you dying to know the answer – skills do matter, with cognitive, noncognitive, and technical skills explaining about 12.1 to 16.6 of the variation in yields.   Before we delve into that

The long run effects of job training

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I am always on the lookout for impact evaluations that give us the long term effects of interventions.   I recently came across a paper by Pablo Ibarraran, Jochen Kluve, Laura Ripani and David Rosas Shady looking at the effects of a youth training program in the Dominican Republic.    While we have some evidence on the long term effects of these kind of programs from developed countries, this is quite possibly the first in a developing context.   

More replication in economics?

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About a year ago, I blogged on a paper that had tried to replicate results on 61 papers in economics and found that in 51% of the cases, they couldn’t get the same result.   In the meantime, someone brought to my attention a paper that takes a wider sample and also makes us think about what “replication” is, so I thought it would be worth looking at those results.  
 

A roundup of some new work on labor

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Last week I was at the GLM-LIC/IZA research conference and there was a pretty diverse and interesting group of papers – some fairly finished, and some still at the idea stage.   Note that almost every paper here had co-authors, but I’ve left them out unless they also presented – the links will give you more information.  Now, fasten your seat belts as we whizz through 2.5 days of papers in 15 minutes.         

Dialing for Data: Enterprise Edition

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Surveys are expensive.   And, in sub-Saharan Africa in particular, a big part of that cost is logistics – fuel, car-hire and the like.   So with the increasing mobile phone coverage more folks are thinking about, and actually using, phones in lieu of in person interviews to complete surveys.   The question is: what does that do to data quality?  

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