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Methodological Frontiers of Public Finance Field Experiments

  • Jeffrey R. Kling

The purpose of this article is to demonstrate how a rich array of methods can be applied to increase the relevance of field experiments in public economics. Two cross-cutting themes are important in multiple phases of the research. First, greater statistical sophistication can draw more value from a field experiment without obscuring the simple and compelling information from the differences in average outcomes of intervention and control groups. Second, the methodological frontier is interdisciplinary, drawing on knowledge and techniques developed in psychology, anthropology, and sociology that can be adapted in order to make public finance field experiments more useful.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w12931.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12931.

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Date of creation: Feb 2007
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Publication status: published as Revised and published in the National Tax Journal, 60:1 (March 2007), 109-127.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12931
Note: CH ED LS PE
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  1. Peter Z. Schochet & Sheena McConnell & John Burghardt, 2003. "National Job Corps Study: Findings Using Administrative Earnings Records Data," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 9da2c5a07ad046419448e94e1, Mathematica Policy Research.
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  11. Rivlin, Alice M, 1974. "How Can Experiments Be More Useful?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(2), pages 346-54, May.
  12. Bruno S. Frey & Stephan Meier, 2004. "Social Comparisons and Pro-social Behavior: Testing "Conditional Cooperation" in a Field Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1717-1722, December.
  13. Catherine C. Eckel & Philip J. Grossman, 2006. "Subsidizing Charitable Contributions in the Field: Evidence from a Non-Secular Charity," Monash Economics Working Papers archive-44, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  14. Jeffrey R. Kling & Jens Ludwig & Lawrence F. Katz, 2005. "Neighborhood Effects on Crime for Female and Male Youth: Evidence from a Randomized Housing Voucher Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 120(1), pages 87-130, January.
  15. Jeanne Brooks-Gunn & J. Greg Duncan & Jeffrey R. Kling & Lisa Sanbonmatsu, 2004. "Neighborhoods and Academic Achievement: Results From The Moving to Opportunity Experiment," Working Papers 871, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  16. Robert Moffitt, 2002. "The role of randomized field trials in social science research: a perspective from evaluations of reforms of social welfare programs," CeMMAP working papers CWP23/02, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  17. Catherine Eckel, 2005. "Subsidizing Charitable Contributions: A Field Test Comparing Matching and Rebate Subsidies," Working Papers 2098, The Field Experiments Website.
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