Press "Enter" to skip to content

March 10, 2017 (links edition #10)

The latest wave on basic income, with articles, blogs about them, and counter-blogs to blogs.

Decoding Universal Basic Income for India, Jean Dreze,

Why I’m a Universal Basic Income skeptic, especially for poor countries, Chris Blattman, 27th February 2017,

Disintermediating the State: Would a ‘Universal Basic Income’ Reduce Poverty More than Targeted Programs?, Justin Sandefur, 6th March 2017, Center for Global Development

The Future of Not Working, Annie Lowrey, 23rd February 2017, New York Times

Fact checking universal basic income: can we transfer our way out of poverty?, Berk Ozler, 27th February 2017, Development Impact.


Cash transfers in various tastes – as a new humanitarian pilot model, their effects on women empowerment, a systematic review of the unconditional versus conditional transfers debate, and how to make an effective pitch for them.

Unconventional cash project challenges aid status quo in Lebanon, Ben Parker, 20th February 2017, IRIN News

Cash for Women’s Empowerment? A Mixed-Methods Evaluation of the Government of Zambia’s Child Grant Program, Juan Bonilla, Rosa Castro Zarzur, Sudhanshu Handa, Claire Nowlin, Amber Peterman, Hannah Ring and David Seidenfeld, 2017, World Development

Conditional and Unconditional Cash Transfers to Improve Use of Contraception in Low and Middle Income Countries: A Systematic Review, M.E. Khan, Avishek Hazra, Aastha Kant and Moazzam Ali, Studies in Family Planning Vol 47 Issue 4 Pages 371-383

A masterclass on cash transfers and how to use High Level Panels to influence Policy, Duncan Green, 10th March 2017, OXFAM


An interesting set of labor and employability materials, including on measuring skills, automation, and activation.

Measuring Skills in Developing Countries, Rachid Laajaj and Karen Macours, March 2017, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 8000

Replacing work with work: new opportunities for workers cut out by automation?, Christian Bodewig, 21st February 2017,

Growing Markets through Business Training for Female Entrepreneurs: A Market-level Randomized Experiment in Kenya, March 2017, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7993

Effectiveness of Active Labor Market Tools in Conditional Cash Transfers Programs: Evidence for Argentina, Elva Lopez Mourelo and Veronica Escudero, 2017, World Development

Temporary Jobs, Institutions, and Wage Inequality within Education Groups in Central-Eastern Europe, April 2017, Cristiano Perugini and Fabrizio Pompei, World Development Volume 92 Pages 40-59

Why taxing robots is not a good idea, 25th February 2017, The Economist


Three new contributions on urbanization and its links to poverty and social inclusion, with evidence from India, US, and a global review form IDS.

For India’s Rural Poor, Growing Towns Matter More than Growing Cities, March 2017, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7994

Forward Cities: Four Cities’ Efforts toward More Inclusive Entrepreneurship, Rob Pitingolo and Kathryn L. S. Pettit, February 2017, Urban Institute

Inclusive Urbanisation and Cities in the Twenty-First Century, Eric Kasper, Gordon McGranahan, Dolf te Lintelo, Jaideep Gupte, Jean-Pierre Tranchant, Rajith Lakshman and Zahrah Nesbitt-Ahmed, February 2017, Institute of Development Studies Evidence Report No. 220


On nutrition-related issues: here is a paper on the impact of the PSNP on nutrition and one on estimates on nutrient intakes.

The Impact of Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Programme on the nutritional status of children: 2008-2012, Guush Berhane, John F. Hoddinott and Neha Kumar, IFPRI Discussion Paper 1604

Imputing nutrient intake from foods prepared and consumed away from home and other composite foods, Dena M. Mwangi, John L. Fiedler and Celeste Sununtnasuk, IFPRI Discussion Paper 01596


Agriculture, food and structural transformation are the focus of three fresh papers, mostly focusing on Africa.

Social protection and inclusive rural transformation, Carolina Trivelli, Silvana Vargas and Jhonatan Clausen, IFAD Research Series 09

Agriculture in Africa – Telling Myths from Facts: A Synthesis, Luc Christiaensen, February 2017, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7979

Grain Price and Volatility Transmission from International to Domestic Markets in Developing Countries, Francisco Ceballos, Manuel A. Hernandez, Nicholas Minot and Miguel Robles, 2017, World Development


A Brookings paper estimates that the global middle class includes around 3 billion people, up 500 million from previous estimates.

The Unprecedented Expansion of the Global Middle Class: An Update, February 2017, Homi Kharas, Global Economy & Development Working Paper 100, Brookings Institute


Risk and resilience in the context of response to natural disasters and forced displacement data.

Trust, Risk, and Time Preferences after a Natural Disaster: Experimental Evidence from Thailand, Alessandra Cassar, Andrew Healy and Carl Von Kessler, 2017, World Development

Stocktaking of Global Forced Displacement, Zara Sarzin, February 2017, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7985


Decision making in terms of politics, and decision-making through machine learning – two interesting papers from ESID and NBER.

The Bangladesh Paradox: Why has politics performed so well for development in Bangladesh?, February 2017, ESID Briefing No. 27

Human Decisions and Machine Predictions, Jon Kleinberg, Himabindu Lakkaraju, Jure Leskovec, Jens Ludwig and Sendhil Mullainathan, February 2017, NBER Working Paper 23180


Finally, two pieces on measurement, including a polemic review of PMTs and the application of satellite images to poverty assessments.

Exclusion by design: An assessment of the effectiveness of the proxy means test poverty targeting mechanism, 2017, Stephen Kidd Bjorn Gelders and Diloá Bailey-Athias, ESS Working Paper No. 56, ILO

Satellites: The latest and greatest way to measure poverty, Tom Murphy, 21st February 2017,


Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply