Empirical evidence on the effectiveness of productivity incentives in the public sector is sparse. However donor enthusiasm is growing for this general approach and certain lessons are emerging.
Just before Christmas, Taranaki District Health Board in New Zealand announced their plans to make the emergency contraceptive pill freely available through pharmacies for youth aged 12 to 24.
We know malaria is a big problem and we know fake drugs are a big problem. What do you get when you put them together? Bad news. A recent paper by Martina Bjorkman-Nyqvist, Jakob Svensson and David Yanagizawa-Drott (ungated version here) shows how bad this problem is in Uganda, and provides an innovative way to deal with it.
This was a question posed by one of our readers in a comment on an earlier post I did on how to calculate the intra-class correlation in Stata.
· A new paper in Science looks at the impacts of China’s one-child policy on personality, finding people born after the introduction of the policy were, not only less trusting, less trustworthy, and more pessimistic, but also less competitive, less conscientious, and more risk-averse. See this coverage in the The Scientist.
A key determinant of good health is the quality of the care that sick patients receive, and donor attention in the health sector is increasingly focused on quality of care investments such as enhanced training and supervision of health providers. This interest in the quality of care will only increase further in the coming years as the epidemiological transition shifts the relative disease burden towards chronic illnesses. Why? Because proper management of chronic illness requires repeated high quality interactions with the health system.
“Everybody lies.” This is the famous refrain of Dr. Gregory House that is repeated in almost every episode of the TV show House. But, we need not need to take our guidance from an eccentric TV character: academics have been heard stating similar sentiments.
· There is a promising sounding new blog about replication in Political Science. This week a post on how to get a masters degree for a replication discusses many of the things done to make a good replication.