Papers and Presentations

Paper: Identifying the Impact Dynamics of a Small Farmer Development Scheme in Nicaragua

Social programs began on the notion that their beneficiaries will change some behavior (perhaps due to improved incentives or new knowledge gained during the intervention) pose unique challenges for impact evaluation. Nevertheless, it is difficult to determine when the treatment and control groups should be compared, i.e. when the program in question should be evaluated. This papers explores challenges revolving around these issues.

Paper: Disaster Risk, Social Vulnerability, and Economic Development

This paper examines the extent to which economic development decreases a country’s risk of experiencing climate-related disasters as well as the societal impacts of those events. The study finds that low-income countries are significantly more at risk of climate-related disasters, even after controlling for exposure to climate hazards and other factors that may confound disaster reporting.

Paper: Unintended Consequences of Enforcement in a Cooperative Institution: Experimental Evidence from Tanzanian Fishers

Small-scale fisheries in developing countries employ the majority of the world's fishers and are a critical source of income and nutrition for billions of people, yet they frequently suffer from overfishing. The team explores the mechanisms by which this undesirable outcome arises and argue that institutional reform should consider that resource users make jointly determined decisions about gear choice, including illegal ones, and harvest rates.

Paper: Aspirations Failure and Formation in Rural Nepal

The lack and drive of aspiration has gained the attention of economists as a behavioral constraint to future-oriented behavior and investment. The research team explores the empirical evidence relating to aspirations and determine if the social phenomenon can stimulate development or reinforce poverty.

Paper: Short-term Impacts of a Pay-it-forward Livestock Transfer and Training Program in Nepal

This study evaluates the short-term (1.5 year) impacts of a multifaceted livestock transfer and training program in rural Nepal using a randomized control trial (RCT). Results show that the program significantly increased financial inclusion and women’s empowerment after 1.5 years for both direct beneficiaries and those brought into the program via its "pay-it-forward" component.

Paper: Early adoption of conservation agriculture practices: Understanding partial compliance in programs with multiple adoption decisions

This article attempts to fill an important knowledge gap by studying conservation agriculture (CA) adoption in southern Malawi. The results show that farmers view adoption of CA as a series of separate decisions, rather than a single decision, and that mulching residues and intercropping or rotating with legumes introduces a multiplier effect on the adoption of zero tillage.