Ideas to action: independent research for global prosperity
Women's Underrepresentation in IFI Leadership
November 27, 2023
EU-Africa Strategy: State of Play
November 24, 2023
Phonics and Foreign Aid: Can America Teach the World to Read?
November 20, 2023
Over two decades and dozens of countries, the United States Agency for International Development has refined a package of support for early-grade reading, often referred to as “structured pedagogy”, which includes textbooks, teacher training, coaching, and lesson plans.
How Much Would Reducing Lead Exposure Improve Children’s Learning in the Developing World?
July 30, 2023
Around half of children in low-income countries have elevated blood lead levels. What role does lead play in explaining low educational outcomes in these settings?
Exploring the Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Low-Cost Private Schools in Nairobi, Kenya
October 19, 2022
To contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, schools in Kenya, as in many other countries, had to temporarily close. This study investigates the extent to which lockdowns and school closures affected households and low-cost private schools (LCPS) in four urban informal settlements in Nairobi. Qua...
The Long-Run Decline of Education Quality in the Developing World
February 23, 2022
We use comparable, survey-based literacy tests for repeated cross-sections of men and women born between 1950 and 2000 to study education outcomes across cohorts in 87 countries. We find that education quality, defined as literacy conditional on completing five years of schooling, stagnated or decli...
Understanding Education Policy Preferences: Survey Experiments with Policymakers in 35 Developing Countries
November 30, 2021
Foreign aid donors and international organizations supporting education in developing countries have increasingly coalesced around a policy agenda prioritizing foundational learning, measured by test scores in primary school, based on a diagnosis of deficient school quality, and a growing body of em...
Live Tutoring Calls Did Not Improve Learning during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Sierra Leone
September 01, 2021
Education systems regularly face unexpected school closures, whether due to disease outbreaks, natural disasters, or other adverse shocks. In this paper we evaluate the effectiveness of live tutoring calls from teachers using an RCT with 4,399 primary school students in Sierra Leone.
Three New Estimates of India’s All-Cause Excess Mortality during the COVID-19 Pandemic
July 20, 2021
India lacks an authoritative estimate of the death toll from the COVID-19 pandemic. We report excess mortality estimates from three different data sources from the pandemic’s start through June 2021. Estimating COVID-deaths with statistical confidence may prove elusive. But all estimates suggest tha...