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Vouchers for Basic Education in Developing Economies: An Accountability Perspective

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  • Varun Gauri
  • Ayesha Vawda

Abstract

Advocates argue that voucher programs can correct the incentive problems of education systems in developing economies. An accountability perspective, based on a principal-agent framework, was developed to clarify the arguments for and against education vouchers. An assessment of findings on voucher programs in industrial countries and a review of voucher or quasi-voucher experiences in Bangladesh, Chile, Colombia, C�te d'Ivoire, and the Czech Republic support the usefulness of the analytic framework. The assessment concludes that the policy relevance of voucher programs for developing economies remains uncertain. Major voucher initiatives have been attempted only in countries with a well-developed institutional infrastructure. Some studies find favorable benefits for at least some population groups, but others find limited effects and evidence of increasing social stratification in schools. Whether vouchers lead to better outcomes or greater stratification appears related to specific contexts, institutional variables, and program designs. Copyright 2004, Oxford University Press.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by World Bank Group in its journal The World Bank Research Observer.

Volume (Year): 19 (2004)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 259-280

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Handle: RePEc:oup:wbrobs:v:19:y:2004:i:2:p:259-280

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Cited by:
  1. World Bank, 2005. "Mexico : Determinants of Learning Policy Note," World Bank Other Operational Studies 8284, The World Bank.
  2. David M. Brasington, . "School Choice and the Flight to Private Schools: To What Extent Are Public and Private Schools Substitutes?," Departmental Working Papers 2006-04, Department of Economics, Louisiana State University.
  3. Obare, Francis & Warren, Charlotte & Abuya, Timothy & Askew, Ian & Bellows, Ben, 2014. "Assessing the population-level impact of vouchers on access to health facility delivery for women in Kenya," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 183-189.

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