nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2013‒05‒11
39 papers chosen by
Mark Lee
Towson University

  1. Earnings Differentials and Returns to Education in China, 1995-2008 By Cui, Yuling; Nahm, Daehoon; Tani, Massimiliano
  2. Poverty Dynamics of Households in Rural China By Katsushi S. Imai; Jing You
  3. Fiscal Space and Public Spending on Children in Burkina Faso By John Cockburn; Hélène Maisonnave; Véronique Robichaud; Luca Tiberti
  4. China and India: Reforms and the Response: How Differently have the Economies Behaved By Manmohan Agarwal; John Whalley
  5. The Determinants of Informality in Mexico's States By Sean Dougherty; Octavio Escobar
  6. Workers on the move: migrated labour in post-reform india By Majumder, Rajarshi
  7. Heterogeneous Effects of Preschool on Child Health Outcomes: Evidence from India By Dipanwita Sarkar; Jayanta sarkar
  8. Contract Duration under Incomplete Land Ownership Rights: Empirical Evidence from Rural Ethiopia By Beyene, Abebe D.; Bezabih, Mintewab; Gebreegziabher, Zenebe
  9. The political economy of food price: The case of Ethiopia By Admassie, Assefa
  10. The political economy of food price policy: The case of Bangladesh By Raihan, Selim
  11. Aid as a catalyst for pioneer investment By Collier, Paul
  12. Growth of African economies: Productivity, policy syndromes, and the importance of institutions By Fosu, Augustin Kwasi
  13. Ties that bind: The kin system as a mechanism of income-hiding between spouses in rural Ghana By Castilla, Carolina
  14. Evaluating antipoverty transfer programmes in Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa: Better policies? Better politics? By Barrientos, Armando; Villa, Juan M.
  15. Taxation and development: A review of donor support to strengthen tax systems in developing countries By Fjeldstad, Odd-Helge
  16. Intra-household efficiency: An experimental study from Ethiopia By Kebede, Bereket; Tarazona, Marcela; Munro, Alistair; Verschoor, Arjan
  17. Policing reforms and economic development in African states: Understanding the linkages: empowering change By Marenin, Otwin
  18. Aid for agriculture and rural development: A changing landscape with new players and challenges By Chimhowu, Admos
  19. The political economy of food price policy in Nigeria By Olomola, Aderibigbe S.
  20. Aid and poverty: Why does aid not address poverty (much)? By Shepherd, Andrew; Bishop, Sylvia
  21. Making aid work for education in developing countries: An analysis of aid effectiveness for primary education coverage and quality By Birchler, Kassandra; Michaelowa, Katharina
  22. Every drop counts: Assessing aid for water and sanitation By Anand, P.B.
  23. The political economy of food price policy: The case of Kenya By Nzuma, Jonathan Makau
  24. Achieving development success: Strategies and lessons from the developing world By Fosu, Augustin Kwasi
  25. Entrepreneurship and violent conflict in developing countries By Bruck, Tilman; Naude, Wim; Verwimp, Philip
  26. A cacophony of policy responses: Evidence from fourteen countries during the 2007/08 food price crisis By Bryan, Shane
  27. Dealing with the 2007/08 global food price crisis: The political economy of food price policy in Malawi By Chirwa, Ephraim; Chinsinga, Blessings
  28. International to domestic price transmission in fourteen developing countries during the 2007-08 food crisis By Baltzer, Kenneth
  29. The political economy of food price policy: The case study of India By Ganguly, Kavery; Gulati, Ashok
  30. The political economy of food price policy: The case of rice prices in Vietnam By Manh Hai, Nguyen; Talbot, Theodore
  31. The political economy of food pricing policy in China By Huang, Jikun; Yang, Jun; Rozelle, Scott
  32. Jobs and welfare in Mozambique By Jones, Sam; Tarp, Finn
  33. Financing sustainable agriculture under climate change with a specific focus on foreign aid By Huang, Jikun
  34. Foreign aid, green cities and buildings By Kablan, Sandrine
  35. Group-participation and Women Empowerment: Matching as an Evaluation Estimator A District-level Study in West Bengal, India By Joysankar Bhattacharya; Sarmila Banerjee
  36. Risk sharing and internal migration By De Weerdt, Joachim; Hirvonen, Kalle
  37. Informality and profitability : evidence from a new firm survey in Ecuador By Medvedev, Denis; Oviedo, Ana Maria
  38. A helping hand or the long arm of the law ? experimental evidence on what governments can do to formalize firms By de Andrade, Gustavo Henrique; Bruhn, Miriam; McKenzie, David
  39. Different dreams, same bed : collecting, using, and interpreting employment statistics in Sub-Saharan Africa -- the case of Uganda By Fox, Louise; Pimhidzai, Obert

  1. By: Cui, Yuling (Macquarie University, Sydney); Nahm, Daehoon (Macquarie University, Sydney); Tani, Massimiliano (Macquarie University, Sydney)
    Abstract: This paper estimates the returns to education of rural-urban migrants during the period of transition of China's economy between 1995 and 2008. Using data from CHIP and RUMiC, we find that rural migrants' earning differentials with urban residents are substantial and mainly depend on the type of occupation, industry, and employers' ownership, rather than the level of education completed. Returns to formal schooling for migrants remained stable at approximately 3% and 5% throughout the period, and differences across quantiles are generally statistically insignificant. Increasing gaps in the return to schooling by gender have instead emerged. These results raise questions about the incentives to invest in human capital for rural migrants and for the governments funding education in emigration regions.
    Keywords: returns to education, rural migrants, quantile regression, ownership enterprises, China, returns to schooling
    JEL: C31 J24 J61 O15
    Date: 2013–04
  2. By: Katsushi S. Imai (Economics, School of Social Sciences, University of Manchester (UK) and RIEB, Kobe University (Japan)); Jing You (School of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Renmin University of China, China)
    Abstract: The objective of our study is to identify patterns and causes of households' transitions in and out of poverty using the long household panel data on rural China in the period 1989-2009. We propose a discrete-time multi-spell duration model that not only corrects for correlated unobserved heterogeneity across transitions and various destinations within the transition, but also addresses the endogeneity due to dynamic selection associated with household's livelihood strategies. Duration dependence is generally found to be negative for both poverty exit and entry. The household choosing either farming or out-migration as a main livelihood strategy was more likely to escape from the persistent poverty than those taking local non-agricultural employment. Overall, the present study emphasises the central role of agriculture in helping the chronically poor escape from poverty.
    Keywords: Poverty Transition, Discrete-time duration model, Correlated unobserved heterogeneity, Dynamic selection, Rural China
    JEL: C33 C41 I32 O15
    Date: 2013–04
  3. By: John Cockburn; Hélène Maisonnave; Véronique Robichaud; Luca Tiberti
    Abstract: Despite high growth rates in recent decades, Burkina Faso is still a poor country. The government acknowledges the need for a stronger commitment to reach the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), particularly regarding the reduction of poverty. At the same time, the Burkinabe budget deficit has grown in recent years in response to various crises which have hit the country. There are strong pressures to rapidly reduce this budget deficit, but there are active concerns about how this will be achieved. The country thus faces difficult choices: how to ensure better living conditions for children, attain the millennium goals and ensure they have a better future in the present budgetary context? To answer this question, three policy interventions were identified: (i) an increase in education spending, (ii) a school fees subsidy and (iii) a cash transfer to households with children under the age of five. The same total amount is injected into the economy in each of the three cases, facilitating comparison between the three scenarios. The discussions also made it possible to identify the three financing mechanisms that appear most realistic: (i) a reduction in subsidies, (ii) an increase in the indirect tax collection rate and (iii) an extension of the timeframe to reduce the public deficit to ten years rather than five. The results indicate that increased public education spending helps raise school participation and pass rates, thus increasing the supply and education level of skilled workers, leading to a reduced incidence and depth of both monetary and caloric poverty. School fees subsidies have more differentiated effects on education: they promote children’s entry into school to a greater degree, but are less effective at inducing them to pursue their studies. Finally, the supply of skilled workers increases slightly, but their average level of education is lower than in the reference scenario. This type of intervention has a beneficial impact on poverty, greater than under increased public education spending. Cash transfers have a limited impact on educational behaviour, and thus on the supply of skilled workers, but substantially reduce the incidence and depth of poverty. The results are qualitatively similar under each financing approach. In sum, if the objective is to achieve improved education and economic performance, the best intervention appears to be to focus on increased public education spending. However, if reducing child poverty is prioritized, it is cash transfers to families that appear more suitable. Regardless of the intervention considered, the most suitable financing mechanism appears to be a temporary increase in the public deficit, because it is accompanied by a smaller negative effect on the quality of life of the most destitute.
    Keywords: Child Poverty, Dynamic General Equilibrium, Micro-Simulation, Burkina Faso
    JEL: I32 D58 C50 O55
    Date: 2013
  4. By: Manmohan Agarwal; John Whalley
    Abstract: The relative performance of China and India is compared using two different methods and they provide a very different picture of their relative performance. We compare the average absolute values of indictors for the decade of the 1980s, 1990s and the 2000s. We use indicators such as the current account balance (CAB), exports of goods and services (XGS), foreign direct investment inflow (FDI), gross domestic savings, gross fixed capital formation (GFCF), aid, private capital inflows (PrK) and workers’ remittances, all as a percentage of GDP. We also look at the growth rate of per capita GDP, exports of goods and services and of gross fixed capital formation. Using a two tailed- test we find that China does better than India for most of these indicators. For instance, China has a higher growth rate of per capita income, XGS and GFCF as also a higher share of XGS, GFCF etc in GDP than does India. We also find that China usually has a lower CV, namely a more stable performance. But over the three decades the CV falls in India so it is approaching that in China, namely the two economies are becoming more similar. We also compare the dynamic performance of the two economies since their reforms. We form index numbers for the indicators. So for example, we from an index number for share of exports in GDP with year 1 of reform in China being 100, i.e. the index for the share in 1979 is 100. Year 2 would be the index number for 1980, namely the value of the share in 1980 with the share in 1979 being 100, etc. In the case of India year 1 would be 1992 once the reforms started, year 2 would be 1993 and so on, so the index would have 1992 as the base year. We find that the indices behave very similarly in the two economies for many of the indicators, namely the pattern of change in China after 1979 is the same as in India after 1992.
    JEL: F00 F10 F21
    Date: 2013–05
  5. By: Sean Dougherty; Octavio Escobar
    Abstract: Informality has important implications for productivity, economic growth, and the inequality of income. In recent years, the extent of informal employment has increased in many of Mexico's states, though highly heterogeneously. The substantial differences across states in terms of informal employment can be helpful in explaining differences in economic growth outcomes. This paper studies the determinants of informal employment using states' diverging outcomes to identify causal factors, taking into account potential endogeneity. The results suggest that multiple factors explain differences in informal employment across states, including per capita income, the quality of labour skills, differences in the prevalence of microenterprises, the cost to start a business, restrictions on foreign investment, the rule of law and incidence of corruption.<P>Les déterminants de l'informalité dans les États du Mexique<BR>L’informalité a des implications importantes sur la productivité, la croissance économique et l’inégalité des revenus. Ces dernières années, la mesure de l’emploi informel a augmenté dans la plupart des États du Mexique, bien que de manière très hétérogène. Les différences importantes entre les États en matière d’emploi informel peuvent être utiles pour expliquer les différences dans les résultats de la croissance économique. Cet article étudie les déterminants de l’emploi informel en utilisant les résultats divergents des États pour identifier les facteurs causaux, en tenant compte de l’endogénéité potentielle. Les résultats suggèrent que plusieurs facteurs expliquent les différences dans l’emploi informel à travers les États, y compris le revenu par habitant, la qualité de la main-d’oeuvre, les différences dans la prévalence des microentreprises, le coût pour démarrer une entreprise, les restrictions sur les investissements étrangers, l’État de droit et l’incidence de la corruption.
    Keywords: informal employment, microenterprises, regulatory policy, sub-national policy analysis, politique de réglementation, emploi informel, micro-entreprises, analyse politique sous nationale
    JEL: J21 O17 O54
    Date: 2013–04–11
  6. By: Majumder, Rajarshi
    Abstract: Migration is a universal phenomenon. From time immemorial women and men have travelled in search of better living. Historical nomadic instinct of man had been in tune with his necessities – more endurable climate, adequate water supply, fertile land and general availability of resources have attracted the human being always. It is expected that with development migration of due to Push factors will decrease while that due to Pull factors will increase. One of the important facets of labour market is therefore the profile of migrant workers and the nature of their movements. In spite of extensive work on migration in Indian context, recent studies on migration in India have focussed mainly on rural-urban migration or on migration from/between specific regions. The present paper explores the post reform nature of migration in India with special focus on migrant workers. Types of movement, profile of migrants vis-a-vis the natives, occupational distribution, and wages received by them have been examined. This has been contrasted with the pre-reform situation. Whether wage setting process is different for migrants is also examined through estimation of the wage function. Results suggest that migration among males are more of an ‘assured’ type rather than a ‘search’ type, in response to regular wage employment, where the better endowed / skilled / trained are moving. Pull factors are definitely playing more important role than push factors in this regard, though in post-reform period push factors have strengthened. Though better-off states with lower incidence of poverty and higher per capita income have higher migration rates, net out migration rates are considerably higher for poorer states indicating that condition of the source region is perhaps the most important factor in migration decisions.
    Keywords: Migration; Wage Setting; Human Capital;
    JEL: J24 J31 O15 R23
    Date: 2012–09–15
  7. By: Dipanwita Sarkar; Jayanta sarkar
    Abstract: The positive impact of early childhood intervention on child’s cognitive, behavioural and schooling outcomes is now well-recognized in the developed countries. However, little is known whether preschools in the developing countries confer similar dividends. This paper focuses on the effect of preschool attendance on childhood health outcomes in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. We employ difference-in-difference method to control for selection on unobservables. Furthermore, allowing for possible heterogeneity in health outcomes across the distribution of health outcomes using quantile treatment effects, we find a significant negative causal effect of preschool attendance that varies across the distribution of a variety of child health outcomes. The result seems to be more pronounced among the male children.
    Date: 2013–05–01
  8. By: Beyene, Abebe D.; Bezabih, Mintewab; Gebreegziabher, Zenebe
    Abstract: Using the land tenure system in Ethiopia, where all land is state-owned and only farm households have usufruct rights, as a case study, we assessed the links between land owners’ tenure insecurity, associated behavioral factors, and contract length. In this paper, we analyze these links with survey data of rural households in the Amhara National Regional State of Ethiopia. The empirical strategy follows a hazard function model employed in duration data analyses and investigates the fitness of the data to the alternative exponential and Weibull functional forms. The results show that landlords’ risk aversion increases the duration of contracts, which is in line with the reverse tenancy argument that landlords’ risk preferences affect land-contract decisions. The findings of the study also indicate that tenure insecurity is a critical factor in the nature and length of contracts; hence, policies should aim to reduce landlords’ frustrations regarding future land redistribution by the state. An important implication of the results is that secure tenure systems can reduce the disincentives from tenure insecurity due to uncertainty about contract duration and thereby enhance tenants’ welfare. Longer-term and stable contracts can improve the land rental market. In addition, the impact of risk preferences points toward the importance of poverty in the functioning of the land rental market.
    Keywords: contract length, tenure insecurity, risk and rate of time preferences, Ethiopia
    JEL: D2 Q12 Q15
    Date: 2012–07–24
  9. By: Admassie, Assefa
    Abstract: Food prices increased significantly in 2007.08 in Ethiopia due to several supply- and demand-side factors. The Ethiopian government released emergency food grain reserves, imported and distributed wheat at subsidized price, banned the export of staple cer
    Keywords: agriculture, political economy, food price, Ethiopia
    Date: 2013
  10. By: Raihan, Selim
    Abstract: Global food price hikes during 2007 and 2008 resulted in a sharp rise in staple food prices in Bangladesh. The poor and marginalized households were particularly vulnerable to such an adverse situation as their real purchasing power eroded. Several studie
    Keywords: global food price hike, Bangladesh, political economy
    Date: 2013
  11. By: Collier, Paul
    Abstract: I discuss how aid can support growth in small, isolated economies. Small markets frustrate scale economies and competition. Combined with high transport costs, essential inputs become prohibitively expensive. Breaking the coordination problem requires pio
    Keywords: aid, growth, investment
    Date: 2013
  12. By: Fosu, Augustin Kwasi
    Abstract: Recent evidence from an exhaustive political economy study of growth of African economies.the growth project of the African Economic Research Consortium (AERC) suggests that .policy syndromes. have substantially contributed to the generally poor growth in
    Keywords: growth of African economies, productivity, policy syndromes, institutions
    Date: 2013
  13. By: Castilla, Carolina
    Abstract: I present a model of intra-household allocation to show that when income is not perfectly observed by both spouses, hiding of income can occur even when revelation increases bargaining power. I draw data from Ghana and exploit the variation in the degree
    Keywords: incomplete information, income-hiding, non-cooperative family bargaining
    Date: 2013
  14. By: Barrientos, Armando; Villa, Juan M.
    Abstract: The paper provides a comparative analysis of the incidence of evaluation methods in antipoverty transfer programmes in Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa. The paper identifies two broad explanations for the incidence of evaluation in antipoverty transfe
    Keywords: impact evaluation, poverty, antipoverty transfers, Latin America, sub-Saharan Africa
    Date: 2013
  15. By: Fjeldstad, Odd-Helge
    Abstract: Recent years have seen a growing interest among donors on taxation in developing countries. This reflects a concern for domestic revenue mobilization to finance public goods and services, as well as recognition of the centrality of taxation for growth and
    Keywords: tax policy, tax administration, tax effort, technical assistance
    Date: 2013
  16. By: Kebede, Bereket; Tarazona, Marcela; Munro, Alistair; Verschoor, Arjan
    Abstract: An experimental design using treatments of a voluntary contribution mechanism is used to test household efficiency. Efficiency is decisively rejected in all treatments contrary to the assumption of most household models. Information on initial endowments
    Keywords: household efficiency, intra-household models, experimental games, Ethiopia
    Date: 2013
  17. By: Marenin, Otwin
    Abstract: The notion that economic development in African states requires minimal levels of security has become widely accepted in the international development community. Reforming non-functioning policing systems is an important step toward achieving security, ye
    Keywords: Africa, policing, economic development, policing reforms
    Date: 2013
  18. By: Chimhowu, Admos
    Abstract: This paper analyses the way aid for agriculture and rural development in the global south has changed over time. It finds three key shifts. First, a change in funding priority that has seen aid commitments move to the social sectors. Second is a shift in
    Keywords: aid agriculture, rural development, high-impact investments, venture philanthropy
    Date: 2013
  19. By: Olomola, Aderibigbe S.
    Abstract: The food crisis of 2008 in Nigeria was influenced by price changes in the world market and the escalation of the price of imported fuel into Nigeria which led to sharp increases in the prices of agricultural inputs and transportation cost. The soaring pri
    Keywords: food crisis, policy responses, political economy
    Date: 2013
  20. By: Shepherd, Andrew; Bishop, Sylvia
    Abstract: Aid is not generally aimed at the poorest people, though most multilateral or bilateral agencies would like to think they get included. However, donors. strategies are generally blind to differentiation among the poor, and have not improved in this respec
    Keywords: aid, poverty, conflict, least developed countries, post-2015
    Date: 2013
  21. By: Birchler, Kassandra; Michaelowa, Katharina
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of education aid on primary enrolment and education quality. Using the most recent data on aid disbursements and econometric specifications inspired by the general aid effectiveness literature, we find some evidence that don
    Keywords: aid effectiveness, educational enrolment, education quality
    Date: 2013
  22. By: Anand, P.B.
    Abstract: Water and sanitation sectors have been the .natural. subjects of aid for several decades. However, these sectors also were among those most affected by changes in aid approaches and tools. The aim of this paper is to capture some of the complexity in asse
    Keywords: water supply, sanitation, health, aid, effectiveness
    Date: 2013
  23. By: Nzuma, Jonathan Makau
    Abstract: This paper evaluates Kenya.s food price crisis over 2002.11 using a political economy approach. Kenya.s food prices have been high and volatile relative to world food prices. Moreover, domestic food markets are highly integrated while about 30 per cent of
    Keywords: political economy, food prices, policy processes
    Date: 2013
  24. By: Fosu, Augustin Kwasi
    Abstract: This paper provides a synthesis of successful strategies and implied lessons for development success, employing at least six themes on in-depth case studies of a large number of developing countries around the world. The coverage includes East Asia and th
    Keywords: development success, strategies and lessons, developing world
    Date: 2013
  25. By: Bruck, Tilman; Naude, Wim; Verwimp, Philip
    Abstract: In this working paper we provide an overview of two recent special journal issues on violent conflict and entrepreneurship. These are the special issue of the Journal of Small Business and Entrepreneurship (2011) and the special issue of the Journal of Co
    Keywords: entrepreneurship, conflict, war, small firms, insecurity, self-employment
    Date: 2013
  26. By: Bryan, Shane
    Abstract: Phenomenal increases in food prices in 2007 and 2008 caused governments around the globe to panic. During the chaos which ensued, most developing countries responded to the crisis with a convoluted array of policies intended to stabilize domestic markets,
    Keywords: food prices, crisis, policy, response
    Date: 2013
  27. By: Chirwa, Ephraim; Chinsinga, Blessings
    Abstract: The paper examines the underlying political economy motivations of the government.s policy responses to food price increases in 2007/08 focusing particularly on maize as the main staple crop. The main government policy responses to the food price spikes i
    Keywords: food policy, price policy, food security, policy processes, political economy
    Date: 2013
  28. By: Baltzer, Kenneth
    Abstract: This paper synthesizes the evidence on price transmission from international maize, rice and wheat markets to domestic markets in fourteen developing countries during the global food crisis in 2007-08. A great variation in the price transmission patterns
    Keywords: Price transmission, global food crisis, cereal prices
    Date: 2013
  29. By: Ganguly, Kavery; Gulati, Ashok
    Abstract: India did not experience any food price spikes during 2007.08 when global food prices erupted. It was partly due to India.s ban on exports of wheat and common rice. But the fiscal stimulus that the government provided in 2009 in the wake of G8 countries.
    Keywords: economic development, agricultural economics
    Date: 2013
  30. By: Manh Hai, Nguyen; Talbot, Theodore
    Abstract: Rice is a key agricultural commodity in Vietnam, and the agriculture, forestry, and fisheries sector remains a major source of employment and value addition. This paper uses episodes of rice price volatility to understand how the interplay of market force
    Keywords: Vietnam, political economy, rice, crisis, agriculture
    Date: 2013
  31. By: Huang, Jikun; Yang, Jun; Rozelle, Scott
    Abstract: The overall goal of this paper is to analyse the political economy of food price policies in China during the global food crisis. The results show that given China.s unique economic and political context and the nature of its agricultural markets, the gov
    Keywords: food price, agriculture, price shocks, political economy, Mozambique
    Date: 2013
  32. By: Jones, Sam; Tarp, Finn
    Abstract: Mozambique has achieved remarkable macroeconomic success over recent decades, boasting one of the world.s highest rates of GDP growth. However, absolute poverty remains persistent, spilling over into social unrest. To better understand the link between ag
    Keywords: Mozambique, labour market, jobs, agriculture, structural transformation
    Date: 2013
  33. By: Huang, Jikun
    Abstract: Agricultural development is facing great challenges in meeting global food security and is expected to face even greater difficulties under climate change. The overall goal of this paper is to examine how foreign aid in particular can be used to achieve t
    Keywords: climate change, finance, foreign aid, agriculture, mitigation, adaption
    Date: 2013
  34. By: Kablan, Sandrine
    Abstract: This paper attempts, first, to assess foreign aid effectiveness in fostering green city procedures in developing countries. For this purpose, we rely on the following aid effectiveness criteria: national ownership; harmonization; alignment and mutual acco
    Keywords: climate change; climate finance; foreign aid; green cities and buildings; carbon emissions
    Date: 2013
  35. By: Joysankar Bhattacharya; Sarmila Banerjee
    Abstract: The paper aims at isolating the effect of group-participation on women empowerment using primary data on 1500 individual women collected during 2007-08 from two districts of West Bengal, India, namely Hooghly and South 24-Parganas. Since the impact evaluation exercise typically suffers from the problem of counterfactual, in the absence of biologically identical observations proxy has been constructed in terms of pairing of statistically identical observations by applying matching techniques based on propensity-scores. It is observed that mere inclusion in a SHG is not sufficient for any woman to enjoy the benefits of better connectivity with the social capital. Here both the duration of membership and the quality of participation matter. Moreover, in terms of a comparison of the probability of inclusion in the program with the proportion of actual inclusion for subjects with same p-scores, the extent of program mismatch has been assessed. This indicates a bias from the supply side where the more likely agents are being included in the absence of special effort to reach out the relatively more vulnerable ones.
    Keywords: Women Empowerment, SHG-Microfinance, Propensity Score Matching, Quality of Participation, Program Out-reach
    JEL: C21 H43 I38
    Date: 2013–05
  36. By: De Weerdt, Joachim; Hirvonen, Kalle
    Abstract: Over the past two decades, more than half the population in rural Tanzania migrated within the country, profoundly changing the nature of traditional institutions such as informal risk sharing. Mass internal migration has created geographically disperse networks, on which the authors collected detailed panel data. By quantifying how shocks and consumption co-vary across linked households, they show how migrants unilaterally insure their extended family members at home. This finding contradicts risk-sharing models based on reciprocity, but is consistent with assistance driven by social norms. Migrants sacrifice 3 to 7 percent of their very substantial consumption growth to provide this insurance, which seems too trivial to have any stifling effect on their growth through migration.
    Keywords: Population Policies,Consumption,Anthropology,Inequality,Labor Policies
    Date: 2013–04–01
  37. By: Medvedev, Denis; Oviedo, Ana Maria
    Abstract: This paper estimates the impact of informality on firm profits using a new firm-level survey designed specifically for this study. The survey was administered to about 1,200 firms with 50 employees or less in Ecuador's two largest cities, Quito and Guayaquil, plus two main centers of economic activity near the northern and southern borders. The paper's results confirm that the extent of firms'compliance with a set of regulatory requirements is linked to the perceived costs and benefits of informality, such as the probability of detection by the authorities and the likelihood of being fined. Nonetheless, taking into account the non-random placement of firms along the formality-informality spectrum and controlling for a large set of firm, owner, and location characteristics, the paper finds that more formal firms tend to be more profitable and have higher output per worker. This impact operates, inter alia, through more formal firms'ability to obtain improved access to credit and achieve higher sales by issuing receipts to clients.
    Keywords: Access to Finance,Microfinance,E-Business,Banks&Banking Reform,Debt Markets
    Date: 2013–05–01
  38. By: de Andrade, Gustavo Henrique; Bruhn, Miriam; McKenzie, David
    Abstract: Many governments have spent much of the past decade trying to extend a helping hand to informal businesses by making it easier and cheaper for them to formalize. Much less effort has been devoted to raising the costs of remaining informal, through increasing enforcement of existing regulations. This paper reports on a field experiment conducted in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, in order to test which government actions work in getting informal firms to register. Firms were randomized to a control group or one of four treatment groups: the first received information about how to formalize; the second received this information and free registration costs along with the use of an accountant for a year; the third group was assigned to receive an enforcement visit from a municipal inspector; while the fourth group was assigned to have a neighboring firm receive an enforcement visit to see if enforcement has spillovers. The analysis finds zero or negative impacts of information and free cost treatments, and a significant but small increase in formalization from inspections. Estimates of the impact of actually receiving an inspection give a 21 to 27 percentage point increase in the likelihood of formalizing. The results show most informal firms will not formalize unless forced to do so, suggesting formality offers little private benefit to them. But the tax revenue benefits to the government of bringing firms of this size into the formal system more than offset the costs of inspections.
    Keywords: Microfinance,E-Business,Small Scale Enterprise,Knowledge for Development,Information Security&Privacy
    Date: 2013–05–01
  39. By: Fox, Louise; Pimhidzai, Obert
    Abstract: Employment and earnings statistics are the key link between the size and structure of economic growth and the welfare of households, which is the ultimate goal of development policy, so it is important to monitor employment outcomes consistently. A cursory review of employment data for low-income Sub-Saharan African countries shows both large gaps and improbable variation within countries over time and among countries, suggesting that low quality data are routinely reported by national statistics offices. Unfortunately, policies are formed and projects developed and implemented on the basis of these statistics. Therefore, errors of measurement could be having profound implications on the strategic priorities and policies of a country. This paper explains the improbable results observed by using data from Uganda, where the labor module contains variation both within and across surveys, to show the sensitivity of employment outcomes to survey methodology. It finds that estimates of employment outcomes are unreliable if the questionnaire did not use screening questions, as labor force participation will be underestimated. Likewise, surveys that use a seven-day recall period underestimate or potentially misrepresent employment outcomes, owing to seasonality and multiple jobs. Common multivariate analysis applied on household survey data will be affected, as the errors in measurement in the dependent and independent variables will be correlated. Corrections to reduce measurement bias in existing data are tested with the survey data; none are found to be completely satisfactory. The paper concludes that there is a knowledge gap about employment outcomes in Sub-Saharan Africa that will continue unless collection techniques improve.
    Keywords: Labor Markets,Labor Policies,Educational Sciences,Poverty Monitoring&Analysis,Tertiary Education
    Date: 2013–05–01

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