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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. John A. List & David Lucking-Reiley, 2000. "The Effects of Seed Money and Refunds on Charitable Giving: Experimental Evidence from a University Capital Campaign," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0008, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  2. Lisa Sanbonmatsu & Jeffrey R. Kling & Greg J. Duncan & Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, 2006. "Neighborhoods and Academic Achievement: Results from the Moving to Opportunity Experiment," NBER Working Papers 11909, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Esther Duflo & Emmanuel Saez, 2002. "The Role of Information and Social Interactions in Retirement Plan Decisions: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," NBER Working Papers 8885, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ludwig, Jens & Kling, Jeffrey R., 2006. "Is Crime Contagious?," IZA Discussion Papers 2213, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  8. 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.
  9. Catherine Eckel, 2005. "Subsidizing Charitable Contributions: A Field Test Comparing Matching and Rebate Subsidies," Working Papers 2098, The Field Experiments Website.
  10. Karlan, Dean & List, John, 2006. "Does Price Matter in Charitable Giving? Evidence from a Large-Scale Natural Field Experiment," Working Papers 13, Yale University, Department of Economics.
  11. James J. Heckman & Jeffrey A. Smith, 1995. "Assessing the Case for Social Experiments," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 85-110, Spring.
  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. 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.
  14. Jeremy Lise & Shannon Seitz & Jeffrey Smith, 2003. "Equilibrium Policy Experiments and the Evaluation of Social Programs," University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity Working Papers 20032, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity.
  15. David Greenberg & Mark Shroder & Matthew Onstott, 1999. "The Social Experiment Market," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(3), pages 157-172, Summer.
  16. Jeremy Lise & Shannon Seitz & Jeffrey Smith, 2006. "Evaluating Search and Matching Models Using Experimental Data," Working Papers 1074, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  17. Jeffrey R. Kling & Jeffrey B. Liebman & Lawrence F. Katz, 2005. "Experimental Analysis of Neighborhood Effects," NBER Working Papers 11577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. 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.
  19. Emmanuel Saez & Esther Duflo, 2003. "The role of information and social interactions in retirement plan decisions: Evidence from a randomized experiment," Framed Field Experiments 00141, The Field Experiments Website.
  20. 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.
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