Published on Development Impact

Weekly links October 27: the rewards of campaign work, getting research ideas, cricketonomics, and more…

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·       Things I learned from reproducing 18 papers” – Nour Elashmawy, who is currently working with me under the Robert S. McNamara Fellowship program, shares some of her takeaways from attempting to work through other people’s code. One of the big takeaways is the potential trade-off between code efficiency and code readability and reusability: having lots of locals, globals, and loops, as well as a whole set of files that all need to be run in a specific order can make for coding efficiency, but can make it a lot more difficult for someone who wants to just understand how to reproduce a particular table or figure from the paper. A post on Let’s Talk Development shares a summary of Nour’s post as well as experiences from three of the other fellows.

·       The Econ that matters blog interviews Lauren Falcao Bergquist about how she gets her research ideas, when the ideal time is for grad students to get fieldwork experience, and how to deal with stakeholders.

·       On VoxDev, Sam Bazzi and Claudio Labanca summarize their work on the impact of working for victorious mayoral campaigns in Brazil: “we compare changes in earnings, hours worked, and hourly wages before versus after the campaign for workers of winning versus losing campaigns in the same municipal election. In this analysis, we focus on elections that are decided by a close margin to address the potential concern that workers of winning campaigns may systematically differ from workers of losing campaigns… Our analysis uncovers large labour market returns for workers of a victorious campaign… As a summary measure, four years after the election, those working for a winning campaign report 10% higher annual earnings or an additional $160 relative to counterfactual earnings among those who worked for narrowly losing candidates… Our estimates imply that workers on a winning campaign are 55% more likely to be public employees three years after the election compared to those who work for the runner-up.”

·       This weekend is the Rugby World Cup final, where my predictions from the rugbyonomics blogpost at the start of the tournament for some very close matches occurred, but luckily New Zealand has managed to get through to the final, where they play South Africa. Go All Blacks! If you are not a rugby fan, you should be, but never fear, the ODI cricket world cup is also now on in India. Mastercard Economics Institute has a post up on cricketonomics, where it uses its card swipe data to measure the increase in spending at hotels, restaurants and sports good stores around the games, and even appears to be using a version of synthetic control to calculate city-level spending impacts. For more on cricket in India and development, I’ll remind you of Matt Lowe’s work on interaction among castes in India through cricket and its impacts.  Or for you macro-types, claims that the cricket world cup may add $2.6 billion to the Indian economy and fuel inflation, which sounds a lot, but is less than half of what the Washington Post estimates Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour has done.

·       Reminder submissions for our annual blog your job market paper are now open, due 8pm Wednesday November 8.


David McKenzie

Lead Economist, Development Research Group, World Bank

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