Syndicate content

Impacts of Fortifying Foods, Sexy Peers, Panhandling Approaches, the MVP again, and more…

David McKenzie's picture

A veritable bounty of interesting links this week:

·         A summary of take-up results of a vocational training program for youth in Kenya by Miguel, Kremer and co-authors in the World Bank’s HD note.

·         Chris Blattman does what blogs should do more often – critically review a paper rather than just cut and paste abstract and link – discussing an independent evaluation of the Millennium Villages (I say as I just insert a link and don’t critically discuss what I am linking to here, but then these are the Friday links). The Economist’s Economics Focus is on this debate this week – apparently I “took up the cudgels” in my post on this several weeks ago.

·         While my Monday post failed to find a link between New Zealand winning the rugby world cup and economic impacts, but this article speculates it did help the incumbent government win last week’s election.

·         Interesting summary reports and new work on longer-term impacts of randomized experiments of a seasonal migration subsidy and impacts on consumption smoothing of a microfinance contract modification are among the studies profiled on the U.S. Dept. of Labor’s ILAB 2010 reports site.

·         A great title for a study “Intolerance of Sexy Peers”, with scientific measurement on a “bitchiness scale”, summarized here. Sample sizes are small (46 treatment, 40 control), but effect size is massive.

·         Dan Ariely summarizes experiments on what approaches are most successful for panhandling.

·         The IADB’s effectiveness blog summarizes a new study that shows strong positive impacts of paving roads on household wellbeing.

·         Lawrence Haddad authors the first in 3ie’s new series of summary notes from its systematic reviews and asks what we know about agricultural interventions aimed to improve child nutrition – “Although the World Bank believes that fortifying foods with vitamins and minerals is a cost- and time-effective way to fight malnutrition, the findings from this systematic review show that more studies with a positive impact on nutritional status are needed before spending time, money and effort on scaling up bio-fortified crops for small farmers.”

Finally, next week we will be featuring posts by graduate students on the job market this year, so look forward to sharing some of the exciting new work being produced with you.


Submitted by Alan de Brauw on
David: Lawrence Haddad's "Evidence Matters" brief missed our recent publication that shows that the introduction of biofortified orange sweet potato (OSP) in Mozambique led to large increases in dietary intakes of vitamin A and sharply reduced the prevalence of inadequate vitamin A intakes among children and women, following widespread adoption of the OSP crop. Here is a link to the paper: Further papers from the study, which used very similar implementation structures in both Mozambique and Uganda and followed the project with a cluster randomized evaluation, are currently under review. The brief is much too quick in dismissing biofortification-- studies exist that demonstrate it has positive impacts on nutritional status.