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Growing Markets through Business Training for Female Entrepreneurs: A Market-Level Randomized Experiment in Kenya

Author

Listed:
  • McKenzie, David

    () (World Bank)

  • Puerto, Olga Susana

    () (Youth Employment Network (UN, ILO, World Bank))

Abstract

A common concern with efforts to directly help some small businesses to grow is that their growth comes at the expense of their unassisted competitors. We test this possibility using a two-stage randomized experiment in Kenya which randomizes business training at the market level, and then within markets to selected businesses. Three years after training, the treated businesses are selling more, earn higher profits, and their owners have higher well-being. There is no evidence of negative spillovers on the competing businesses, and the markets as a whole appear to have grown in terms of number of customers and sales volumes. This market growth appears to come from enhanced customer service and new product introduction, generating more customers and more sales from existing customers. As a result, business growth in underdeveloped markets is possible without taking sales away from non-treated businesses.

Suggested Citation

  • McKenzie, David & Puerto, Olga Susana, 2017. "Growing Markets through Business Training for Female Entrepreneurs: A Market-Level Randomized Experiment in Kenya," IZA Discussion Papers 10615, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10615
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Miriam Bruhn & David McKenzie, 2009. "In Pursuit of Balance: Randomization in Practice in Development Field Experiments," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(4), pages 200-232, October.
    2. de Mel, Suresh & McKenzie, David & Woodruff, Christopher, 2014. "Business training and female enterprise start-up, growth, and dynamics: Experimental evidence from Sri Lanka," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 199-210.
    3. Gabriela Calderón & Jesse M. Cunha & Giacomo De Giorgi, 2013. "Business Literacy and Development: Evidence From a Randomized Controlled Trial in Rural Mexico," Working Papers 742, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    4. Mckenzie,David J. & Woodruff,Christopher M., 2015. "Business practices in small firms in developing countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7405, The World Bank.
    5. Abhijit V. Banerjee & Esther Duflo, 2008. "What Is Middle Class about the Middle Classes around the World?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(2), pages 3-28, Spring.
    6. David McKenzie & Christopher Woodruff, 2014. "What Are We Learning from Business Training and Entrepreneurship Evaluations around the Developing World?," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 29(1), pages 48-82.
    7. McKenzie, David, 2012. "Beyond baseline and follow-up: The case for more T in experiments," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 210-221.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    business training; spillovers; microenterprise; market development;

    JEL classification:

    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship

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