BlogNews

News, ideas, and analysis from J-PAL staff and affiliated professors. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive monthly email updates.

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Developing an ed-tech agenda in Latin America

Monday, September 24, 2018, by Ana Carolina Mendoza

Technology is increasingly opening up new and promising opportunities to improve educational achievement in schools. Governments in Latin America are investing significant resources to adopt education technologies, or ed tech, with the promise of improving learning outcomes. Some of these investments are not evidence-based and risk wasting public resources with ineffective approaches. Despite this, there is strong demand among some actors for data and evidence.

At J-PAL Latin America & the Caribbean... Read More

Making the transition to college: Student voices

Monday, September 17, 2018, by Myiesha Robateau, Sophie Shank, and Chloe Wells

The college application and enrollment process in the United States is complex. For aspiring first-generation college students, that complexity can overwhelm even the best intentions to enroll in and finish college. However, there is emerging evidence that personalized assistance on college applications and matriculation requirements can help students overcome these initial barriers in attaining a college degree.

In this third blog post in our three-part series on access to... Read More

Navigating the rocky road to higher education

Monday, September 10, 2018, by Sophie Shank

In this first blog of our three-part series on college access, we review the major challenges that aspiring students face on the road to college and introduce findings from randomized evaluations that highlight evidence-based interventions to address these barriers. In part two of the series, we explore a hands-on guide that outlines cost-effective, evidence-based solutions to help more students successfully apply, enroll, and graduate from college. In part... Read More

Data anlaysis

Pre-results review at the Journal of Development Economics: Taking transparency in the discipline to the next level

Wednesday, September 5, 2018, by Aleksandar Bogdanoski and Keesler Welch

Earlier this year, the Journal of Development Economics (JDE), with support from the Berkeley Initiative for Transparency in the Social Sciences (BITSS), began the pilot of a “pre-results review” track for academic authors who submit their work to the journal for peer review and publication.

Pre-results review means that the study is reviewed before there are any empirical results. In Stage 1, authors submit a proposal that... Read More

Introducing J-PAL's Firms sector

Wednesday, September 5, 2018, by David Atkin, Nicholas Bloom, and Serene Ho

What role do policies that affect private sector firms play in closing the productivity gap between higher-income and lower-income countries, and what are the implications of firms’ policies on economic growth and worker welfare?

Economists have long identified large productivity gaps between higher-income and lower-income countries. For instance, total productivity of U.S. firms is more than four times larger than some South Asian countries, and 30 times larger than... Read More

Youth paint fences in Sao Paulo

How to keep youth away from crime?

Wednesday, August 22, 2018, by Claudio Ferraz

This post was first published as an op-ed in Nexo Jornal and has been translated from the original Portuguese.

Quantitative studies conducted in the U.S. and Brazil show investments in education and job opportunity creation can act as methods for decreasing violence.

In 2017, Brazil witnessed the highest number of violent deaths in the world—approximately 60,000 people were killed. More people have died violently in Brazil in... Read More

Low-income Americans are missing out on the public benefits they're eligible for. Simple interventions can help.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018, by Matthew Notowidigdo

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)—often referred to as food stamps—is one of the largest social safety net programs in the United States. But every year thousands of households eligible for SNAP benefits do not enroll, missing out on food assistance that could be critical. Enrollment among adults over the age of 60 is particularly low; in 2012, nearly half of older adults who qualified to receive SNAP benefits did... Read More

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