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Cost-effectiveness analysis of education and health interventions in developing countries


  • Patrick J. McEwan


High-quality impact evaluations, including randomised experiments, are increasingly popular, but cannot always inform resource allocation decisions unless the costs of interventions are considered alongside their effects. Cost-effectiveness analysis is a straightforward but under-utilised tool for determining which of two or more interventions provides a (non-pecuniary) unit of effect at least cost. This paper reviews the framework and methods of cost-effectiveness analysis, emphasising education and health interventions, and discusses how the methods are currently applied in the literature.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick J. McEwan, 2012. "Cost-effectiveness analysis of education and health interventions in developing countries," Journal of Development Effectiveness, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(2), pages 189-213, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevef:v:4:y:2012:i:2:p:189-213 DOI: 10.1080/19439342.2011.649044

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Mogues, Tewodaj & Mueller, Valerie & Kondylis, Florence, 2017. "Cost-effectiveness of community-based gendered advisory services to farmers: Analysis in Mozambique and Tanzania," IFPRI discussion papers 1613, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    2. Evans, David K. & Popova, Anna, 2016. "Cost-Effectiveness Analysis in Development: Accounting for Local Costs and Noisy Impacts," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 262-276.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H43 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Project Evaluation; Social Discount Rate
    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development


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