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Designing Experiments to Measure Spillover Effects

Author

Listed:
  • Sarah Baird

    (Department of Economics/Institute for International Economic Policy, George Washington University)

  • Aislinn Bohren

    (University of Pennsylvania)

  • Berk Ozler

    (World Bank and University of Otago)

  • Craig McIntosh

    (University of California, San Diego)

Abstract

This paper formalizes the design of experiments intended specifically to study spillover effects. By first randomizing the intensity of treatment within clusters and then randomly assigning individual treatment conditional on this cluster-level intensity, a novel set of treatment effects can be identified. We develop a formal framework for consistent estimation of these effects, and provide explicit expressions for power calculations. We show that the power to detect average treatment effects declines precisely with the quantity that identifies the novel treatment effects. A demonstration of the technique is provivded using a cash transfer program in Malawi.

Suggested Citation

  • Sarah Baird & Aislinn Bohren & Berk Ozler & Craig McIntosh, 2014. "Designing Experiments to Measure Spillover Effects," Working Papers 2014-11, The George Washington University, Institute for International Economic Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:gwi:wpaper:2014-11
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Experimental Design; Networks; Cash Transfers;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • O22 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Project Analysis
    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development

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