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Comparing Quasi-Experimental Designs and Structural Models for Policy Evaluation: The Case of a Reform of Lone Parental Welfare

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  • Pronzato, Chiara D.

    ()
    (University of Turin)

Abstract

This paper compares two different ways of doing policy evaluation: on the one hand, quasi-experimental methods (or "ex-post" evaluations) which exploit the introduction of a reform and identify its effect by comparing treated and untreated individuals; on the other hand, structural models (or "ex-ante" evaluations) which are based on economic theory and predict the effect of potential reforms by using the estimates of behavioural parameters. The comparison is carried out using an empirical case. In 1998, in Norway, a major welfare reform changed the rules of the most generous benefit for lone parents: it increased the amount of the benefit and introduced working requirements. Using a quasi-experimental evaluation approach, it is found a positive effect of the reform on lone mothers' employment. In this paper, I estimate a static structural model of work and welfare participation decisions and compare the results using the two different approaches. Despite the differences in the assumptions I make for the two models, results are fairly comparable.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6803.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6803

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Related research

Keywords: lone mothers; in-work benefits; quasi-experimental evaluation designs; discrete choice modelling; ex-ante and ex-post evaluation;

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References

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  1. Richard Blundell & Alan Duncan & Julian McCrae & Costas Meghir, 2000. "Evaluating In-Work Benefit Reform: The Working Families Tax Credit in the U.K," JCPR Working Papers 160, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Johannes Geyer & Peter Haan & Katharina Wrohlich, 2014. "The Effects of Family Policy on Mothers' Labor Supply: Combining Evidence from a Structural Model and a Natural Experiment," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1366, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  2. Thor O. Thoresen & Trine E. Vattø, 2013. "Validation of structural labor supply model by the elasticity of taxable income," Discussion Papers 738, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  3. Chiara Pronzato, 2013. "Fighting Lone Mothers' Poverty through in-Work Benefits - Methodological Issues and Policy Suggestions," CESifo Working Paper Series 4375, CESifo Group Munich.

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