Getting Girls into School: Evidence from a Scholarship Program in Cambodia
Increasing the schooling attainment of girls is a challenge in much of the developing world. In this study we evaluate the impact of a program that gives scholarships to girls making the transition between the last year of primary school and the first year of secondary school in Cambodia. We show that the scholarship program increased the enrollment and attendance of recipients at program schools by about 30 percentage points. Larger impacts are found among girls with the lowest socioeconomic status at baseline. The results are robust to a variety of controls for observable differences between scholarship recipients and nonrecipients, to unobserved heterogeneity across girls, and to selective transfers between program schools and other schools. We conclude that there is substantial potential for demand-side interventions in lower-income countries like Cambodia.
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