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Can Basic Entrepreneurship Transform the Economic Lives of the Poor?

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Author Info

  • Oriana Bandiera
  • Robin Burgess
  • Narayan Das
  • Selim Gulesci
  • Imran Rasul
  • Munshi Sulaiman

Abstract

The world's poorest people lack capital and skills and toil for others in occupations that others shun. Using a large-scale and long-term randomized control trial in Bangladesh this paper demonstrates that sizable transfers of assets and skills enable the poorest women to shift out of agricultural labor and into running small businesses. This shift, which persists and strengthens after assistance is withdrawn, leads to a 38% increase in earnings. Inculcating basic entrepreneurship, where severely disadvantaged women take on occupations which were the preserve of non-poor women, is shown to be a powerful means of transforming the economic lives of the poor.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE in its series STICERD - Economic Organisation and Public Policy Discussion Papers Series with number 43.

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Date of creation: Apr 2013
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Handle: RePEc:cep:stieop:43

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Web page: http://sticerd.lse.ac.uk/_new/publications/default.asp

Related research

Keywords: asset transfers; capital constraints; vocational training; occupationalchoice; structural change; poverty.;

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References

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  1. Joseph P. Kaboski & Robert M. Townsend, 2011. "A Structural Evaluation of a Large‐Scale Quasi‐Experimental Microfinance Initiative," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(5), pages 1357-1406, 09.
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  7. Schultz, Theodore W, 1980. "Nobel Lecture: The Economics of Being Poor," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(4), pages 639-51, August.
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  9. Townsend, Robert M., 2011. "Financial Systems in Developing Economies: Growth, Inequality and Policy Evaluation in Thailand," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199533237.
  10. Galor, Oded & Zeira, Joseph, 1993. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(1), pages 35-52, January.
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  12. M. Shahe Emran & Stephen C. Smith & Virginia Robano, 2009. "Assessing the Frontiers of Ultra-Poverty Reduction: Evidence from CFPR/TUP, an Innovative Program in Bangladesh," Working Papers 2009-06, The George Washington University, Institute for International Economic Policy.
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Cited by:
  1. Morduch, Jonathan & Ravi, Shamika & Bauchet, Jonathan, 2012. "Failure vs. Displacement: Why An Innovative Anti-Poverty Program Showed No Net Impact," PRIMCED Discussion Paper Series 32, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
  2. Mark Rosenzweig & Ahmed Musfiq Mobarak, 2013. "Risk, Insurance and Wages in General Equilibrium," Working Papers 1035, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  3. Cho, Yoonyoung & Honorati, Maddalena, 2013. "Entrepreneurship programs in developing countries : a meta regression analysis," Social Protection Discussion Papers 77168, The World Bank.
  4. Jonathan Argent & Britta Augsburg & Imran Rasul, 2013. "Livestock asset transfers with and without training: evidence from Rwanda," IFS Working Papers W13/23, Institute for Fiscal Studies.

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