IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Inferring welfare maximizing treatment assignment under budget constraints

  • Bhattacharya, Debopam
  • Dupas, Pascaline

This paper concerns the problem of allocating a binary treatment among a target population based on observed covariates. The goal is to (i) maximize the mean social welfare arising from an eventual outcome distribution, when a budget constraint limits what fraction of the population can be treated and (ii) to infer the dual value, i.e. the minimum resources needed to attain a specific level of mean welfare via efficient treatment assignment. We consider a treatment allocation procedure based on sample data from randomized treatment assignment and derive asymptotic frequentist confidence interval for the welfare generated from it. We propose choosing the conditioning covariates through cross-validation. The methodology is applied to the efficient provision of anti-malaria bed net subsidies, using data from a randomized experiment conducted in Western Kenya. We find that subsidy allocation based on wealth, presence of children and possession of bank account can lead to a rise in subsidy use by about 9% points compared to allocation based on wealth only, and by 17% points compared to a purely random allocation.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304407611002697
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Econometrics.

Volume (Year): 167 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 168-196

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:econom:v:167:y:2012:i:1:p:168-196
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jeconom

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Delgado, Miguel A & Mora, Juan, 1995. "Nonparametric and Semiparametric Estimation with Discrete Regressors," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(6), pages 1477-84, November.
  2. César Martinelli & Susan Wendy Parker, 2009. "Deception and Misreporting in a Social Program," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(4), pages 886-908, 06.
  3. Newey, Whitney K., 1994. "Kernel Estimation of Partial Means and a General Variance Estimator," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(02), pages 1-21, June.
  4. Rajeev Dehejia, 1999. "Program Evaluation as a Decision Problem," NBER Working Papers 6954, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Pagan,Adrian & Ullah,Aman, 1999. "Nonparametric Econometrics," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521355643, November.
  6. Claeskens,Gerda & Hjort,Nils Lid, 2008. "Model Selection and Model Averaging," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521852258, November.
  7. Michael Lechner & Jeffrey Smith, 2003. "What is the Value Added by Caseworkers?," University of Western Ontario, Centre for Human Capital and Productivity (CHCP) Working Papers 20031, University of Western Ontario, Centre for Human Capital and Productivity (CHCP).
  8. Bhattacharya, Debopam, 2007. "Inference on inequality from household survey data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 137(2), pages 674-707, April.
  9. Pascaline Dupas, 2014. "Short‐Run Subsidies and Long‐Run Adoption of New Health Products: Evidence From a Field Experiment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 82(1), pages 197-228, 01.
  10. Xiaohong Chen & Oliver Linton & Ingrid Van Keilegom, 2003. "Estimation of semiparametric models when the criterion function is not smooth," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 2167, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  11. Pascaline Dupas, 2009. "What Matters (and What Does Not) in Households' Decision to Invest in Malaria Prevention?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 224-30, May.
  12. Pakes, Ariel & Pollard, David, 1989. "Simulation and the Asymptotics of Optimization Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(5), pages 1027-57, September.
  13. Keisuke Hirano & Guido W. Imbens & Geert Ridder, 2003. "Efficient Estimation of Average Treatment Effects Using the Estimated Propensity Score," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(4), pages 1161-1189, 07.
  14. Esther Duflo & Rema Hanna, 2006. "Monitoring works: Getting teachers to come to school," Framed Field Experiments 00142, The Field Experiments Website.
  15. Duflo, Esther & Glennerster, Rachel & Kremer, Michael, 2007. "Using Randomization in Development Economics Research: A Toolkit," CEPR Discussion Papers 6059, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Joseph G. Altonji & Lewis M. Segal, 1994. "Small Sample Bias in GMM Estimation of Covariance Structures," NBER Technical Working Papers 0156, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Charles F. Manski, 2003. "Statistical treatment rules for heterogeneous populations," CeMMAP working papers CWP03/03, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  18. Tetenov, Aleksey, 2012. "Statistical treatment choice based on asymmetric minimax regret criteria," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 166(1), pages 157-165.
  19. Awash Teklehaimanot & Gordon C. McCord & Jeffrey D. Sachs, 2007. "Scaling Up Malaria Control in Africa: An Economic and Epidemiological Assessment," NBER Working Papers 13664, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Chunrong Ai & Xiaohong Chen, 2003. "Efficient Estimation of Models with Conditional Moment Restrictions Containing Unknown Functions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(6), pages 1795-1843, November.
  21. Hahn, Jinyong & Hirano, Keisuke & Karlan, Dean, 2009. "Adaptive Experimental Design Using the Propensity Score," Working Papers 59, Yale University, Department of Economics.
  22. Keisuke Hirano & Jack R. Porter, 2009. "Asymptotics for Statistical Treatment Rules," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(5), pages 1683-1701, 09.
  23. Horowitz, Joel L, 1992. "A Smoothed Maximum Score Estimator for the Binary Response Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(3), pages 505-31, May.
  24. Bryan S. Graham & Guido W. Imbens & Geert Ridder, 2014. "Complementarity and aggregate implications of assortative matching: A nonparametric analysis," Quantitative Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 5, pages 29-66, 03.
  25. Frolich, Markus, 2008. "Statistical Treatment Choice: An Application to Active Labor Market Programs," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 103, pages 547-558, June.
  26. Hansen, Bruce E., 2008. "Uniform Convergence Rates For Kernel Estimation With Dependent Data," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 24(03), pages 726-748, June.
  27. Donald W. K. Andrews, 1999. "Estimation When a Parameter Is on a Boundary," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(6), pages 1341-1384, November.
  28. Peter Hall & Rodney C. L. Wolff & Qiwei Yao, 1999. "Methods for estimating a conditional distribution function," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6631, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  29. Jessica Cohen & Pascaline Dupas, 2010. "Free Distribution or Cost-Sharing? Evidence from a Randomized Malaria Prevention Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(1), pages 1-45.
  30. Aprajit Mahajan & Alessandro Tarozzi & Joanne Yoong & Brian Blackburn, 2009. "Bednets, Information and Malaria in Orissa," Working Papers 10-78, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  31. Qi Li & Jeffrey Scott Racine, 2006. "Nonparametric Econometrics: Theory and Practice," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 8355, 01-2013.
  32. Stoye, Jörg, 2009. "Minimax regret treatment choice with finite samples," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 151(1), pages 70-81, July.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:econom:v:167:y:2012:i:1:p:168-196. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.