nep-lam New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2008‒08‒06
three papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. Does Government Regulation Complement Existing Community Efforts to Support Cooperation? Evidence from Field Experiments in Colombia By Maria Claudia Lopez; James J. Murphy; John M Spraggon; John K. Stranlund
  2. Prejudice and Immigration By Paolo E Giordani; Michele Ruta
  3. The Welfare Impacts of Local Investment Projects: Evidence from the Guatemala FIS By Pablo Ibarraran; Miguel Sarzosa; Yuri Suarez Dillon Soares

  1. By: Maria Claudia Lopez (Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN); James J. Murphy (Department of Economics, University of Alaska Anchorage, Anchorage, AK); John M Spraggon (Department of Resource Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst); John K. Stranlund (Department of Resource Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst)
    Abstract: In this paper we describe a field experiment conducted among mollusk harvesters in a community on the Pacific Coast of Columbia. The experiment is based on a standard linear public good and consists of two stages. In the first stage we compare the ability of monetary and nonmonetary sanctions among community members to increase contributions to the public good. In the second stage we add a government regulation with either a high or low sanction for noncompliance to community enforcement efforts. The results for the first stage are consistent with other comparisons of monetary and nonmonetary sanctions within groups; both led to higher contributions. The results from the second stage reveal that government regulations always complemented community enforcement efforts. While the subjects tended to reduce their sanctioning efforts under the government regulations, contributions and earnings were significantly higher than without government interventions. In fact, the combination of community and government enforcement efforts generated near-perfect contributions to the public good. However, more research into the combined roles of government intervention and community enforcement efforts is needed because the complementarity we find may be situation-specific.
    Keywords: Field experiments, public goods, government regulation, community enforcement
    JEL: C93 H41 Q2
    Date: 2008–07
  2. By: Paolo E Giordani; Michele Ruta
    Date: 2008–07–28
  3. By: Pablo Ibarraran (Office of Evaluation and Oversight, Inter-American Development Bank); Miguel Sarzosa (Office of Evaluation and Oversight, Inter-American Development Bank); Yuri Suarez Dillon Soares (Office of Evaluation and Oversight, Inter-American Development Bank)
    Abstract: This paper assesses the welfare impacts of local investments projects in rural areas of Guatemala. Using census track data from two rounds of the Guatemalan population census, we find, as expected, that local investment in schools significantly boost enrollment and normal progression in school, that investments in water and sewerage significantly improved measures of access to water. We also show that the amount of investment matters. Using a dose-response functions based on generalized propensity score we also find that larger investments are associated with larger welfare improvements. We find no evidence of effectiveness of investments on child mortality. In terms of productive projects, there was a significant and consistent impact on consumption. We did not find evidence to suggest complementarities of impacts.
    Keywords: Social Investment Fund, Local Development, Propensity Score Matching, Impact Evaluation
    JEL: I31 H11 H41
    Date: 2008–02

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