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Study: giving out cash in Uganda helped after 4 years. After 9 years, not so much. (Vox)

September 10, 2018

By Dylan Matthews 

From the article: 

I write a lot about the benefits of fighting poverty by giving poor people cash, rather than, say, giving them chickens or food parcels or water pumps. Giving cash directly to the poor is relatively easy, it respects the decisions of poor people as to how to spend it, and it avoids the central planning challenges of some other anti-poverty policies. Moreover, there is, I think, pretty good evidence demonstrating its effectiveness. 

... 

Then there’s the fact that beneficiaries were still doing better after nine years in terms of assets. “I wouldn’t underrate the asset findings,” said Amanda Glassman, chief operating officer and senior fellow at the Center for Global Development, who’s read the study. “Having those assets is also associated with higher earnings over the lifetime, and it’s possible that might be pretty important over the long term.” Blattman and his co-authors didn’t find that assets like livestock and trees were leading to a lot more income nine years out — but that could change in the future. 

Read the full article here

 

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