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Knowing What Works. The Case for Rigorous Programme Evaluation

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  • Schmidt, Christoph M

Abstract

Since interventions by the public sector generally commit substantial societal resources, the evaluation of effects and costs of policy interventions is imperative. This Paper outlines why programme evaluation should follow well respected scientific standards and why it should be performed by independent researchers. Moreover, it outlines the three fundamental elements of evaluation research, the choice of the appropriate outcome measure, the assessment of the direct and indirect cost associated with the intervention, and the attribution of effects to underlying causes. The Paper proceeds to outline in intuitive terms that the construction of a credible counterfactual situation is at the heart of the formal statistical evaluation problem. It introduces several approaches, based on both experiments and on non-experimental data that have been proposed in the literature to solve the evaluation problem, and illustrates them numerically.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2826.

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Date of creation: Jul 2001
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2826

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Keywords: Counterfactual; Experiments; Observational Studies;

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Cited by:
  1. Fertig, Michael & Schmidt, Christoph M., 2001. "First- and Second-Generation Migrants in Germany - What Do We Know and What Do People Think," IZA Discussion Papers 286, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. John P. Haisken-DeNew & Matthias Vorell, 2009. "Killing them with Kindness: Negative Distributional Externalities of Increasing UI Benefits," Ruhr Economic Papers 0121, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  3. Frondel, Manuel & Schmidt, Christoph M., 2005. "Evaluating environmental programs: The perspective of modern evaluation research," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(4), pages 515-526, December.
  4. repec:iab:iabzaf:v:39:i:3/4:p:575-601 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. Eva Reinowski & Birgit Schultz, 2006. "Microeconometric Evaluation of Selected ESF-funded ALMP-Programmes," IWH Discussion Papers 17, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
  6. Jochen Kluve & Hartmut Lehmann & Christoph M. Schmidt, 2002. "Disentangling Treatment Effects of Polish Active Labor Market Policies: Evidence from Matched Samples," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 447, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  7. Fertig, Michael & Kluve, Jochen & Schmidt, Christoph M., 2006. "Die makroökonomische Wirkung aktiver Arbeitsmarktpolitik : eine Panelanalyse auf Ebene regionaler Arbeitsmärkte (The macroeconomic impact of active labor market policy : a longitudinal analysis for ," Zeitschrift für ArbeitsmarktForschung - Journal for Labour Market Research, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany], vol. 39(3/4), pages 575-601.
  8. Uwe Neumann & Marc Borne & Helmut Geißler & Manfred Gutzmer & Marianne Halstrick-Schwenck & Peter Jakubowski & Markus Scheuer & Christoph M. Schmidt, 2011. "Aufwertung der lokalen Standortbedingungen – Quartiers-Impulse: Ein Forschungsfeld des Experimentellen Wohnungs- und Städtebaus (ExWoSt)," RWI Materialien, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, pages 66, 01.
  9. Christoph M. Schmidt, 2000. "Arbeitsmarktpolitische Massnahmen und ihre Evaluierung: eine Bestandsaufnahme," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 69(3), pages 425-437.
  10. Jeff Borland & Yi-Ping Tseng & Roger Wilkins, 2005. "Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Methods of Microeconomic Program and Policy Evaluation," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2005n08, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
  11. John P. Haisken-DeNew & Christoph M. Schmidt, 2009. "Nickel and Dimed German Style: The Working Poor in Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 0122, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  12. Michael Rothgang & Bernhard Lagemann & Christoph M. Schmidt & Werner Friedrich & Jochen Dehio & Wolfgang Dürig & Verena Eckl & Markus Körbel & Mathias Peistrup & Stefan Seidel, 2008. "Das Programm zur Förderung der Industriellen Gemeinschaftsforschung – Zwischenbilanz der erweiterten Erfolgskontrolle," RWI Materialien, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, pages 138, December.
  13. Czarnitzki, Dirk, 2001. "Die Auswirkung der Forschungs- und Technologiepolitik auf die Innovationsaktivitäten ostdeutscher Unternehmen," ZEW Discussion Papers 01-05, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  14. Takis Venetoklis, 2002. "Public Policy Evaluation: Introduction to Quantitative Methodologies," Research Reports 90, Government Institute for Economic Research Finland (VATT).
  15. Eva Reinowski, 2004. "Mikroökonometrische Evaluation und das Selektionsproblem – Ein anwendungsorientierter Überblick über nichtparametrische Lösungsverfahren –," IWH Discussion Papers 200, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
  16. Vandenberghe, V. & Robin, S., 2004. "Evaluating the effectiveness of private education across countries: a comparison of methods," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 487-506, August.
  17. Eva Reinowski & Birgit Schultz & Jürgen Wiemers, 2003. "Evaluation von Maßnahmen der aktiven Arbeitsmarktpolitik mit Hilfe eines iterativen Matching-Algorithmus - Eine Fallstudie über langzeitarbeitslose Maßnahmeteilnehmer in Sachsen," IWH Discussion Papers 173, Halle Institute for Economic Research.

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