Choosing Among Alternative Nonexperimental Methods for Estimating the Impact of Social Programs: The Case of Manpower Training
The recent literature on evaluating manpower training programs demonstrates that alternative nonexperimental estimators of the same program produce a array of estimates of program impact. These findings have led to the call for experiments to be used to perform credible program evaluations. Missing in all of the recent pessimistic analyses of nonexperimental methods is any systematic discussion of how to choose among competing estimators. This paper explores the value of simple specification tests in selecting an appropriate nonexperimental estimator. A reanalysis of the National Supported Work Demonstration Data previously analyzed by proponents of social experiments reveals that a simple testing procedure eliminates the range of nonexperimental estimators that are at variance with the experimental estimates of program impact.
|Date of creation:||Feb 1989|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Heckman, James J. and V. Joseph Hotz. "Choosing Among Alternative Nonexperimental Methods For Estimating The Impact Of Social Programs: The Case Of Manpower Training: Rejoinder," Journal of the American Statistical Association, 1989, v84(408), 878-880.|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
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- LaLonde, Robert J, 1986. "Evaluating the Econometric Evaluations of Training Programs with Experimental Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 604-20, September.
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NBER Working Papers
1489, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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- James J. Heckman & V. Joseph Hotz & Marcelo Dabos, 1987. "Do We Need Experimental Data To Evaluate the Impact of Manpower Training On Earnings?," Evaluation Review, SAGE Publishing, vol. 11(4), pages 395-427, August.
- Robert J. LaLonde, 2003. "Employment and Training Programs," NBER Chapters, in: Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States, pages 517-586 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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