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December 16, 2016 (links edition #3)

Plenty of work on Africa: two papers on social pensions, a debated one assessing PMTs, the political economy of community-based interventions, and a framework to examine food security in the region

Benefits and Costs of Social Pensions in Sub-Saharan Africa, Melis U. Guven and Phillippe G. Leite, The World Bank Social Protection & Labor Discussion Paper No. 1607

Uganda’s Senior Citizens’ Grant: A success story from the heart of Africa, Stephen Kidd, December 2016, Development Pathways

A Poor Means Test? Econometric Targeting in Africa, Caitlin Brown, Martin Ravallion and Dominique van de Walle, December 2016, The World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7915

Social protection in an aspiring ‘developmental state’: The political drivers of community-based health insurance in Ethiopia, Tom Lavers, December 2016, ESID Working Paper No. 71

Social protection for enhanced food security in sub-Saharan Africa, Stephen Devereux, Food Policy Volume 60 Pages 52-62


An interesting quantification of the American Dream, or the likelihood of upward mobility relative to initial conditions

The Fading America Dream: Trends  in Absolute Income Mobility Since 1940, Raj Chetty, David Grusky, Maximilian Hell, Nathaniel Hendren, Robert Manduca, Jimmy Narang, December 2016, NBER Working Paper No. 22910


New work on resilience from a governance and household socio-economic perspective

Resilient risk governance: Experience from the Sahel and Horn of Africa, Elizabeth Carabine, Sabrina Chesterman and Emily Wilkinson, November 2016, BRACED Issue No. 5

Socioeconomic Resilience: Multi-Hazard Estimates in 117 Countries, Stephane Hallegatte, Mook Bangalore and Adrien Vogt-Schilb, November 2016, The World Bank Policy Research Working Papers


Empirical work on energy subsidy reforms in Pakistan – just released

Residential Electricity Subsidies in Pakistan. Targeting, Welfare Impacts and Options for Reform, Thomas Walker, Ezgi Canpolat, Farah Khalid Khan and Adea Kryeziu, December 2016, The World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7912


How mobile cash transfers impact poverty and gender dimensions in the long run

The long-run poverty and gender impacts of mobile money, Tavneet Suri and William Jack, 9th December 2016, Science Vol 354 Issue 6317, page 1288 – 1292

Has Bangladesh charity found a way to banish extreme poverty? Emma Graham-Harrison, 6th December 2016,


A fascinating article exploring how the predictive power of machine learning can be applied to social issues

A Guide to Solving Social Problems with Machine Learning, Jon Kleinberg, Jens Ludwig and Sendhil Mullainathan, 8th December 2016,


Global plans and interventions to end extreme poverty

Grow, Invest, Insure: A Game Plan to End Extreme Poverty by 2030, Indermit S. Gill, Ana Revenga and Christian Zeballos, November 2016, The World Bank Policy Research Working Papers


Links I liked: Spurious Correlations, Tyler Vigen,


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