Tag Archives | esther duflo

Top Takeaways from Banerjee and Duflo’s Poor Economics

If you’ve been following this blog for sometime, you know that I consider Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics as a bible of sorts — to understand poverty, understand the psyche and motivations of the extremely poor, and the power of Randomized Control Trials (RCTs) to fairly assess efficacy of anti-poverty programs. Several posts […]

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Voting in developing countries dominated by ethnicity? Banerjee and Duflo answer with.. (yes) a RCT

In the diverse melting pot that is the great Indian democracy, we all know the strong role ethnicity plays in deciding elections. In their book Poor Economics, Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo write about yet another RCT (Randomized Control Trial) they devised to determine whether it’s possible to change the voter’s natural mindset — to […]

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Psychology of Savings – How the Poor Save to Buy Fertilizer

In chapter 8 (Saving Brick by Brick) of Poor Economics, Banerjee and Duflo delve into the subject of savings – the psychology behind why a majority of the poor find it incredibly hard to save and how they are caught in a catch-22 situation. Savings is less attractive for the poor, because for them the […]

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Operation Magic Carpet and what it can teach us about reengineering education

In Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s book Poor Economics, they describe a remarkable social experiment which demonstrates that making sure every child learns the basics well in school is not only possible, it is in fact fairly easy (even in the most adverse conditions), as long as one focuses on doing exactly that, and nothing […]

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Elitist School Systems – teachers with high ambition and parents with low expectations (double-whammy)

[Editor’s Note: This is the sixth in a series of excerpts from chapter 4 (education policy) of Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics.] Parents are not alone in focusing their expectations on success at the graduation exam: The whole education system colludes with them. The curriculum and organization of schools often date back to […]

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The curious history of conditional cash transfers

[Editor’s Note: This is the fifth in a series of six excerpts from chapter 4 (education policy) of Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics. According to World Bank, more than 30 countries have some form of Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programs.] In a recent interview, Harish Hande (Founder of SELCO) and 2011 Magsaysay Award […]

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Middle ground between the supply-wallahs and demand-wallahs

[Editor’s Note:┬áThis post is the third in a series of six excerpts from Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics, specifically from chapter 4 (on education policy) – Top of the Class. Part 1 provided the supply-wallahs perspective, Part 2 was the counterpoint from the demand-wallahs. This post presents the middle ground.] At the core […]

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The Supply Demand Wars in Education Policy – Part 2

[Editor’s Note:┬áThis post is the second in a series of six excerpts from Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics, specifically from chapter 4 (on education policy) – Top of the Class. Part 1 provided the supply-wallahs perspective. This excerpt provides the demand-wallahs perspective.] The Demand Wallahs’ Case For the “demand wallahs”, a set of […]

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Supply-Demand Wars in Education Policy – Part 1

[Editor’s Note: The best non-fiction book I ever borrowed used to be Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs and Steel. That distinction is in real danger of being usurped by Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics. There are many reasons to read this book cover to cover but if you are looking for that ONE reason, […]

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Health Insights from Banerjee Duflo’s Poor Economics

This is Part 3 of our series of insights from Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics – culled from Chapter 3 (Low-Hanging Fruit for Better (Global) Health?) Part 2 in this series was For the poor, what could possibly be more important than food? Countries in which a large fraction of the population is […]

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