Published on Development Impact

Weekly links April 3: external validity of working from home research, lessons from epidemic responses, and more…

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·       Nick Bloom on why his QJE paper on working from home increasing productivity does not necessarily extrapolate to current conditions and what can be done to help.

·       On Let’s Talk Development, Chico Ferreira asks whether there is a trade-off between income and lives in dealing with Covid-19 – and the dangers of assuming any such trade-off is fixed.

·       Also on Let’s Talk Development, Damien de Walque reviews the available tools for projecting the trajectory of Covid-19.

·       On the IPA blog, Oeindrila Dube offers lessons about epidemic response from the 2014-15 Ebola crisis in Sierra Leone – and a good example of something Berk and I blogged about earlier this week – a case where a completed intervention may affect the response to a crisis “Our endline survey was over, but a core idea behind the interventions was that building trust and connections between communities and their health clinics would improve people’s willingness to use clinics, and this would improve health outcomes. And Ebola is exactly the kind of situation where how many people survive depends on how much they trust their healthcare providers, and how willing they are to get tested and if they test positive, get treated. We worked with Government and a local university to secure access to a de-identified version of the database that was used to track Ebola cases in Sierra Leone... After the epidemic subsided, we looked at whether reported Ebola cases differed in the areas that had received our two interventions.”

·       Video of Tavneet Suri’s talk on transitioning surveys from in-person to over the phone.

·       Katy Milkman interviews Angela Duckworth on how to adapt your goals to these new circumstances and how to embed daily fresh starts into your routines.


David McKenzie

Lead Economist, Development Research Group, World Bank

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