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This paper evaluates the impact of three different performance incentives schemes using data from a social experiment that randomized 88 Mexican high schools with over 40,000 students into three treatment groups and a control group. Treatment one provides individual incentives for performance on curriculum-based mathematics tests to students only, treatment two to teachers only and treatment three gives both individual and group incentives to students, teachers and school administrators. Program impact estimates reveal the largest average effects for treatment three, smaller impacts for treatment one and no impact for treatment two. Download Paper
Conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs link public transfers to human capital investment in hopes of alleviating current poverty and reducing its intergenerational transmission. Whereas nearly all studies of their impacts have focused on youth, these CCT programs may also have an impact on aging adults, by increasing household resources or inducing changes in allocations of time of various household members, that may be of substantial interest, particularly given the rapid aging of most populations. This paper contributes to this under-researched area by examining health and work impacts on the aging for the bestknown and most influential of these programs, the Mexican PROGRESA/Oportunidades program. For a number of health indicators, the program appears to significantly improve health, with impacts that are larger with a greater time receiving the program. However, most of these health impacts are concentrated on women. Download Paper
Conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs have spread worldwide as a new form of social assistance for the poor. Previous evaluations of CCT programs focus mainly on rural settings, and little is known about their effects in urban areas. This paper studies the short-term (one and two-year) effects of the Mexican Oportunidades CCT program on urban children/youth. The program provides financial incentives for children/youth to attend school and for family members to visit health clinics. To participate, families had to sign up for the program and be deemed eligible. Difference-in-difference propensity score matching estimates indicate that the program is successful in increasing school enrollment, schooling attainment and time devoted to homework and in decreasing working rates of boys. Download Paper