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The Impact and Targeting of Social Infrastructure Investments: Lessons from the Nicaraguan Social Fund

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  • Menno Pradhan
  • Laura B. Rawlings

Abstract

The benefit incidence and impact of projects financed by the Nicaraguan Emergency Social Investment Fund are investigated using a sample of beneficiaries, a national household survey, and two distinct comparison groups. The first group is constructed on the basis of geographic proximity between similar facilities and their corresponding communities; the second is drawn from the national Living Standards Measurement Study survey sample using propensity score matching techniques. The analysis finds that the social fund investments in latrines, schools, and health posts are targeted to poor communities and households, whereas those in sewerage are targeted to the better-off. Investments in water systems are poverty-neutral. Education investments have a positive, significant impact on school outcomes regardless of the comparison group used. The results of health investments are less clear. Using one comparison group, the analysis finds that use of health clinics increased as a result of the investments; using both, it finds higher use of clinics for children under age six with diarrhea. With neither comparison group does it find improvements in health outcomes. Social fund investments in water and sanitation improve access to services but have no effect on health outcomes. Copyright 2002, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Menno Pradhan & Laura B. Rawlings, 2002. "The Impact and Targeting of Social Infrastructure Investments: Lessons from the Nicaraguan Social Fund," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 16(2), pages 275-295, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:wbecrv:v:16:y:2002:i:2:p:275-295
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    Cited by:

    1. Wagstaff, Adam & Pradhan, Menno, 2005. "Health insurance impacts on health and nonmedical consumption in a developing country," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3563, The World Bank.
    2. Fedderke, J.W. & Perkins, P. & Luiz, J.M., 2006. "Infrastructural investment in long-run economic growth: South Africa 1875-2001," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(6), pages 1037-1059, June.
    3. Shapiro, Joseph & Trevino, Jorge Moreno, 2004. "Compensatory education for disadvantaged Mexican students : an impact evaluation using propensity score matching," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3334, The World Bank.
    4. Park, Albert & Wang, Sangui, 2010. "Community-based development and poverty alleviation: An evaluation of China's poor village investment program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(9-10), pages 790-799, October.
    5. Alberto Abadie & Guido W. Imbens, 2008. "On the Failure of the Bootstrap for Matching Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(6), pages 1537-1557, November.
    6. Ghazala Mansuri, 2004. "Community-Based and -Driven Development: A Critical Review," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 19(1), pages 1-39.
    7. Harounan Kazianga & Leigh Linden & Ali Protik & Matt Sloan, 2016. "The Medium-Term Impacts of Girl-Friendly Schools: Seven-Year Evidence from School Construction in Burkina Faso," Development Working Papers 406, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano, revised 11 Nov 2016.
    8. Araujo, M. Caridad & Ferreira, Francisco H.G. & Lanjouw, Peter & Özler, Berk, 2008. "Local inequality and project choice: Theory and evidence from Ecuador," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(5-6), pages 1022-1046, June.
    9. Mogues, Tewodaj & Petracco, Carly & Randriamamonjy, Josee, 2011. "The wealth and gender distribution of rural services in Ethiopia: A public expenditure benefit incidence analysis," IFPRI discussion papers 1057, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    10. Eric W. Djimeu, 2014. "Does social action fund promote schooling in conflict affected countries? Mixed evidence from Angola," HiCN Working Papers 189, Households in Conflict Network.
    11. World Bank, 2008. "Community-Driven Approaches in Lao PDR : Moving Beyond Service Delivery - Summary Overview," World Bank Other Operational Studies 6163, The World Bank.
    12. Luis Marcano, 2005. "Atacando Pobreza: Evaluación del Programa Fondo de Inversión Social de Panamá," OVE Working Papers 0205, Inter-American Development Bank, Office of Evaluation and Oversight (OVE).
    13. Sudhanshu Handa & John A. Maluccio, 2010. "Matching the Gold Standard: Comparing Experimental and Nonexperimental Evaluation Techniques for a Geographically Targeted Program," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(3), pages 415-447, April.
    14. Virgilio Galdo & Bertha Briceño, 2005. "Evaluating the Impact on Child Mortality of a Water Supply and Sewerage Expansion in Quito: Is Water Enough?," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 2833, Inter-American Development Bank.
    15. Vijayendra Rao & Ana Maria Ibanez, 2005. "The Social Impact of Social Funds in Jamaica: A 'Participatory Econometric' Analysis of Targeting, Collective Action, and Participation in Community-Driven Development," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(5), pages 788-838.
    16. Mary Arends-Kuenning & Suzanne Duryea, 2006. "The Effect of Parental Presence, Parents’ Education, and Household Headship on Adolescents’ Schooling and Work in Latin America," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 263-286, June.
    17. Gauri Khanna, 2008. "The Impact on Child Health from Access to Water and Sanitation and Other Socioeconomic Factors," IHEID Working Papers 02-2008, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies, revised Jan 2008.
    18. Grogan, Louise & Sadanand, Asha, 2013. "Rural Electrification and Employment in Poor Countries: Evidence from Nicaragua," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 252-265.
    19. David Coady, 2015. "Designing and Evaluating Social Safety Nets: Theory, Evidence, and Policy Conclusions," Working Papers id:7496, eSocialSciences.
    20. Virgilio Galdo & Bertha Briceño, 2005. "Evaluating the Impact on Child Mortality of a Water Supply and Sewerage Expansion in Quiro:Is Water Enough?," OVE Working Papers 0105, Inter-American Development Bank, Office of Evaluation and Oversight (OVE).
    21. Subhrendu K Pattanayak, 2009. "Rough Guide to Impact Evaluation of Environmental and Development Programs," Working Papers id:2187, eSocialSciences.
    22. Coady, David P., 2004. "Designing and evaluating social safety nets," FCND discussion papers 172, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    23. World Bank, 2008. "Community-Driven Approaches in Lao PDR : Moving Beyond Service Delivery, Volume 2. Main Report," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7973, The World Bank.

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