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Do donors get what they paid for? micro evidence on the fungibility of development project aid

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  • van de Walle, Dominique
  • Cratty, Dorothyjean

Abstract

Recipient government responses to development project aid have typically been studied at high levels of aggregation, using cross-country comparisons and/or aggregate time series data. Yet increasingly the relevant decisions are being made at the local level, in response to specific community-level projects. The authors use local-level data to test for fungibility of World Bank financing of rural road rehabilitation targeted to specific geographic areas of Vietnam. A simple double difference estimate suggests that the project's net contribution to rehabilitated road increments is close to zero, suggesting complete displacement of funding. However, with better controls for the endogeneity of project placement the authors find much less evidence of fungibility, with displacement accounting for around one-third of the aid. The results point to the importance ofdealing with selection bias in assessing project aid fungibility.

Suggested Citation

  • van de Walle, Dominique & Cratty, Dorothyjean, 2005. "Do donors get what they paid for? micro evidence on the fungibility of development project aid," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3542, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3542
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pack, Howard & Pack, Janet Rothenberg, 1990. "Is Foreign Aid Fungible? The Case of Indonesia," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(399), pages 188-194, March.
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    4. Pack, Howard & Pack, Janet Rothenberg, 1993. "Foreign Aid and the Question of Fungibility," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(2), pages 258-265, May.
    5. Rajeev H. Dehejia & Sadek Wahba, 2002. "Propensity Score-Matching Methods For Nonexperimental Causal Studies," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(1), pages 151-161, February.
    6. Jalan, Jyotsna & Ravallion, Martin, 2003. "Estimating the Benefit Incidence of an Antipoverty Program by Propensity-Score Matching," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 21(1), pages 19-30, January.
    7. Khilji, Nasir M. & Zampelli, Ernest M., 1994. "The fungibility of U.S. military and non-military assistance and the impacts on expenditures of major aid recipients," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 345-362, April.
    8. Jalan, Jyotsna & Ravallion, Martin, 1998. "Are there dynamic gains from a poor-area development program?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 65-85, January.
    9. Zampelli, Ernest M, 1986. "Resource Fungibility, the Flypaper Effect, and the Expenditure Impact of Grants-in-Aid," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(1), pages 33-40, February.
    10. James Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Jeffrey Smith & Petra Todd, 1998. "Characterizing Selection Bias Using Experimental Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(5), pages 1017-1098, September.
    11. Feyzioglu, Tarhan & Swaroop, Vinaya & Zhu, Min, 1998. "A Panel Data Analysis of the Fungibility of Foreign Aid," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 12(1), pages 29-58, January.
    12. Grossman, Jean Baldwin, 1994. "Evaluating Social Policies: Principles and U.S. Experience," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 9(2), pages 159-180, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Charles Kenny, 2008. "What is effective aid? How would donors allocate it?," The European Journal of Development Research, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 20(2), pages 330-346.
    2. Liutang Gong & Yuzhe Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 2008. "Foreign Aid, Public Spending, Optimal Fiscal and Monetary Policies, and Long-Run Growth," CEMA Working Papers 309, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Housing&Human Habitats; Roads&Highways; ICT Policy and Strategies; Health Economics&Finance; Poverty Monitoring&Analysis;

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