Causal Design

CategoriesBlog Post Graduate Fellow STATA

Grad Fellow Notes: STATA Command -inspect-

On a recent project, the client wanted an idea of the skew of each of a large number of variables. The data originated from a satisfaction survey (1=very dissatisfied; 5=very satisfied). On our Excel presentation sheet, we were to choose from the following options to describe the population’s view regarding each variable: right-skewed (generally very dissatisfied), left-skewed (generally very satisfied), U-shaped (most were either very dissatisfied or very satisfied, with few being neutral), or normal-shaped (most were neutral, with few being either very dissatisfied or very satisfied).

CategoriesGraduate Fellow Opinion

Grad Fellow Notes: Data Science & Development

According to a 2015 report by the UN’s International Telecommunication Union, 2/3rd of global internet users come from the developing world. In some countries, like India, mobile phone use is as high as 75%. These trends are generating large amounts of data, which present a new opportunity for tech-savvy development practitioners. Governments and NGOs can utilize the data to make well-informed decisions and provide more effective services at a cheaper price. The question however, is how to do this.

CategoriesBlog Post Graduate Fellow RCT Research

Grad Fellow Notes: The Impact of “No Impact” Evaluations

With the steady rise of the number of impact evaluations (IEs) per year, it should come as no surprise that not every single IE will show a positive impact. The authors of “no impact” evaluations will understandably be worried that their work will not be academically published nor be used for public policy. There is, however, still value in such information. Evidence that a particular program does not work paves the way for alternative interventions to happen. Licona (2017) provides several examples where null results in Mexican education programs encouraged the tweaking of aspects such as selection criteria, consolidation of redundant programs, and budget optimization.

Grad Fellow Notes: STATA Tips

Managing multiple editors in STATA: For this week’s blog post, it seems useful to cover some code I’ve learned for Stata.  This first useful trick allows multiple users who are going to use the same dofile to run that file without having to first customize the filepath code.  By copying the individual usernames and filepaths […]

Linear Probability Models

Introduction It is often the case in Impact Evaluation that we have a need to analyze binary, qualitative variables such as savings behavior (saves vs. does not save), voting behavior (votes vs. does not vote), or gender (male vs. female). In general, we are interested in whether a condition exists or does not exist, rather […]

CategoriesCommunity Opinion

Shift to Emperics

I was just forwarded a Bloomberg article by a good friend along with a note that she finally understood -kinda- what it is we do. Many, my own family included, believe that economists spend their days coming up with theoretical models for what could happen in the market. I’ve spent a fair amount of time trying to explain […]

IDinsight: “The Future of Impact Evaluation”

With support from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, IDinsight published a 3ie Working Paper on the “Future of Impact Evaluation.” We really like the team over at IDinsight and think they are spot-on with this work. Causal Design’s primary focus is on providing decision-focused evaluations like they describe in the paper. Their main arguments are listed […]