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Weekly links March 10: Ex post power calcs ok? Indian reforms, good and bad policies, and more…

David McKenzie's picture
  • Andrew Gelman argues that it can make sense to do design analysis/power calculations after the data have been collected – but he also makes clear how NOT to do this (e.g. if a study with a small sample and noisy measurement finds a statistically significant increase of 40% in profits, don’t then see whether it has power to detect a 40% increase – instead you should be looking for the probability the treatment effect is of the wrong sign, or that the magnitude is overestimated, and should be basing the effect size you examine power for on external information). They have an R function retrodesign() to do these calculations.
  • Annie Lowrey interviews Angus Deaton in the Atlantic, and discusses whether it is better to be poor in the Mississippi Delta or in Bangladesh, opioid addiction, and the class of President Obama.