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Network Structure and Education Outcomes: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Bangladesh

Author

Listed:
  • Hahn, Youjin

    (Monash University)

  • Islam, Asadul

    (Monash University)

  • Patacchini, Eleonora

    (Cornell University)

  • Zenou, Yves

    (Monash University)

Abstract

We study the causal impact of network centrality on educational outcomes using field experiments in primary schools in Bangladesh. After obtaining information on friendship networks, we randomly allocate students into groups and give them individual and group assignments. We find that groups that perform best are those whose members have high Katz-Bonacich and key-player centralities. Leaders are mostly responsible for this effect, while bad apples have little influence. Own Katz-Bonacich centrality is associated with better individual performance only if it is above the average centrality of the group. Further experiments reveal that leadership, as measured by network centrality, mainly captures non-cognitive skills, especially patience and competitiveness.

Suggested Citation

  • Hahn, Youjin & Islam, Asadul & Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2015. "Network Structure and Education Outcomes: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Bangladesh," IZA Discussion Papers 8872, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8872
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    Cited by:

    1. Díaz, Carlos & Patacchini, Eleonora & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2021. "Leaders in juvenile crime," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 192(C), pages 638-667.
    2. Matias Berthelon & Eric Bettinger & Diana I. Kruger & Alejandro Montecinos-Pearce, 2019. "The Structure of Peers: The Impact of Peer Networks on Academic Achievement," Research in Higher Education, Springer;Association for Institutional Research, vol. 60(7), pages 931-959, November.
    3. Zenou, Yves, 2014. "Key Players," CEPR Discussion Papers 10277, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    social networks; centrality measures; leaders; soft skills;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • D01 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Behavior: Underlying Principles
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General

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