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Operational Models for Improving the Targeting Efficiency of Agricultural and Development Policies: A systematic comparison of different estimation methods using out-of-sample tests

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  • Houssou, Nazaire
  • Zeller, Manfred

Abstract

Accurate targeting is key for the success of any development policy. While a number of factors might explain low targeting efficiency such as governance failure, political interference or lack of political will, this paper focuses on improving indicator-based models that identify poor households and smallholder farmers more accurately. Using stepwise regressions along with out-of-sample validation tests and receiver operating characteristic curves, this paper develops proxy means tests models for rural and urban Malawi. The models developed have proved their validity in an independent sample and therefore, can be used to target a wide range of development policies to the poor. This makes the models a potentially interesting policy tool for the country.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by International Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China with number 51454.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ags:iaae09:51454

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Keywords: Malawi; poverty targeting; predictions; proxy means tests; out-of-sample tests; ROC curve; bootstrap; Agricultural and Food Policy; Agricultural Finance; Community/Rural/Urban Development; Food Security and Poverty; International Development; Political Economy; Research Methods/ Statistical Methods; C01; C13; C51; C52; I3; I32; Q14;

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  1. Wodon, Quentin T., 1997. "Targeting the poor using ROC curves," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(12), pages 2083-2092, December.
  2. Hentschel, Jesko, et al, 2000. "Combining Census and Survey Data to Trace the Spatial Dimensions of Poverty: A Case Study of Ecuador," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 14(1), pages 147-65, January.
  3. Ahmed, Akhter U. & Rashid, Shahidur & Sharma, Manohar & Zohir, Sajjad, 2004. "Food aid distribution in Bangladesh," FCND briefs 173, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  4. World Bank, 2007. "Malawi Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment : Investing in Our Future, Synthesis Report," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7557, The World Bank.
  5. World Bank, 2007. "Malawi : Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment, Investing in Our Future," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7555, The World Bank.
  6. Glewwe, Paul, 1992. "Targeting assistance to the poor : Efficient allocation of transfers when household income is not observed," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 297-321, April.
  7. Ravallion, Martin & Chao, Kalvin, 1989. "Targeted policies for poverty alleviation under imperfect information: Algorithms and applications," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 213-224.
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