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The Impacts of Infrastructure in Development: A Selective Survey

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  • Sawada, Yasuyuki

    (Asian Development Bank Institute)

Abstract

Development economists have considered physical infrastructure to be a precondition for industrialization and economic development. Yet, two issues remain to be addressed in the literature. First, while proper identification of the causal effectiveness of infrastructure in reducing poverty is important, experimental evaluation, such as randomized control trials (RCT)-based evaluation, is difficult in the context of large-scale infrastructure. Second, while micro studies so far have focused on the nexus between infrastructure and certain types of poverty outcomes such as income, poverty, health, education, and other individual socio-economic outcomes, to better interpret a wide variety of micro-level infrastructure evaluation results using either experimental or non-experimental methods, the role of infrastructure should be placed in a broader context. To bridge these gaps, we augment the existing review articles on the same topic, such as Estache (2010), Hansen, Andersen, and White, (2012), and World Bank (2012) by addressing these two remaining issues. First, while forming a counterfactual is often difficult for impact evaluation of infrastructure, engineering constraints beyond human manipulation can allow people to adopt quasi-experimental methods of impact evaluation. Second, evaluators can adopt, for example, a hybrid method of natural and artefactual field experiments to elicit the role of infrastructure in facilitating the complementarity of the market, state, and community mechanisms.

Suggested Citation

  • Sawada, Yasuyuki, 2015. "The Impacts of Infrastructure in Development: A Selective Survey," ADBI Working Papers 511, Asian Development Bank Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:ris:adbiwp:0511
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Cuong Viet Nguyen & Tung Duc Phung & Van Khanh Ta & Dat Tho Tran, 2017. "The impact of rural roads and irrigation on household welfare: evidence from Vietnam," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(6), pages 734-753, November.
    4. Yoshino, Naoyuki & Pontines, Victor, 2015. "The “Highway Effect” on Public Finance: Case of the STAR Highway in the Philippines," ADBI Working Papers 549, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    5. Mukaramah Harun, 2020. "Infrastructure Disparities in Northern Malaysia," Papers 2001.02510, arXiv.org.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    physical infrastructure; economic infrastructure; social infrastructure; poverty reduction;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • H54 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Infrastructures
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure

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