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Poverty targeting in public programs: A comparison of alternative nonparametric methods

Listed author(s):
  • Isha Dewan

    ()

    (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi)

  • Rohini Somanathan

    ()

    (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi)

Very poor households may be excluded from public programs intended for their benefit for a variety of reasons as lack information, a permanent residence or membershiip in social networks. We are interested in methods of testing for such exclusion based on independently drawn samples of program participants and non-participants. We discuss three alternative nonparametric procedures; sign tests, tests for stochastic dominance and a test for distribution crossing. In the cases where there is a poverty threshold below which program participation is difficult, our simulation results suggests that the last of these test procedures is the most powrful. we apply this test to data from a microfinance program in India and find evidence that the poorest households in the area were largely outside the program.

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File URL: http://www.isid.ac.in/~pu/dispapers/dp04-16.pdf
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Paper provided by Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi, India in its series Indian Statistical Institute, Planning Unit, New Delhi Discussion Papers with number 04-16.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2004
Handle: RePEc:ind:isipdp:04-16
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  1. Davidson, Russell & Duclos, Jean-Yves, 1998. "Statistical Inference for Stochastic Dominance and for the Measurement of Poverty and Inequality," Cahiers de recherche 9805, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
  2. Xavier Gine & Pamela Jakiela & Dean Karlan & Jonathan Morduch, 2006. "Microfinance Games," Working Papers 2102, The Field Experiments Website.
  3. Anderson, Gordon, 1996. "Nonparametric Tests of Stochastic Dominance in Income Distributions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1183-1193, September.
  4. Schmid, Friedrich & Trede, Mark, 1998. "A Kolmogorov-type test for second-order stochastic dominance," Statistics & Probability Letters, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 183-193, February.
  5. Heckman, James J & Smith, Jeffrey A., 2003. "The determinants of participation in a social program: Evidence from a prototypical job training program," Working Paper Series 2003:10, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  6. Kaur, Amarjot & Prakasa Rao, B.L.S. & Singh, Harshinder, 1994. "Testing for Second-Order Stochastic Dominance of Two Distributions," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(05), pages 849-866, December.
  7. Charles M. Beach & Russell Davidson, 1983. "Distribution-Free Statistical Inference with Lorenz Curves and Income Shares," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 723-735.
  8. Foster, James E & Shorrocks, Anthony F, 1988. "Poverty Orderings," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 173-177, January.
  9. repec:pri:rpdevs:morduch_microfinance_poor is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Christina Paxson & Norbert R. Schady, 2002. "The Allocation and Impact of Social Funds: Spending on School Infrastructure in Peru," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 16(2), pages 297-319, August.
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