Conditional Cash Transfers in Education: Design Features, Peer and Sibling Effects Evidence from a Randomized Experiment in Colombia

57 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Felipe Barrera-Osorio

Felipe Barrera-Osorio

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education

Marianne Bertrand

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Leigh L. Linden

The University of Texas at Austin; National Bureau of Economic Research; Jameel Poverty Action Lab; Innovations for Poverty Action; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development (BREAD)

Francisco Perez Calle

Ministry of Education (Columbia)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: March 1, 2008

Abstract

This paper presents an evaluation of multiple variants of a commonly used intervention to boost education in developing countries - the conditional cash transfer - with a student level randomization that allows the authors to generate intra-family and peer-network variation. The analysis tests three treatments: a basic conditional cash transfer treatment based on school attendance, a savings treatment that postpones a bulk of the cash transfer due to good attendance to just before children have to re-enroll, and a tertiary treatment where some of the transfers are conditional on students' graduation and tertiary enrollment rather than attendance. On average, the combined incentives increase attendance, pass rates, enrollment, graduation rates, and matriculation to tertiary institutions. Changing the timing of the payments does not change attendance rates relative to the basic treatment but does significantly increase enrollment rates at both the secondary and tertiary levels. Incentives for graduation and matriculation are particularly effective, increasing attendance and enrollment at secondary and tertiary levels more than the basic treatment. There is some evidence that the subsidies can cause a reallocation of responsibilities within the household. Siblings (particularly sisters) of treated students work more and attend school less than students in families that received no treatment. In addition, indirect peer influences are relatively strong in attendance decisions with the average magnitude similar to that of the direct effect.

Keywords: Tertiary Education, Access to Finance, Primary Education, Secondary Education, Economics of Education

Suggested Citation

Barrera-Osorio, Felipe and Bertrand, Marianne and Linden, Leigh L. and Perez Calle, Francisco, Conditional Cash Transfers in Education: Design Features, Peer and Sibling Effects Evidence from a Randomized Experiment in Colombia (March 1, 2008). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper Series, Vol. , pp. -, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1149083

Felipe Barrera-Osorio

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education ( email )

456 Gutman Library
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United States

Marianne Bertrand

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-834-5943 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://gsbwww.uchicago.edu/fac/marianne.bertrand/vita/cv_0604.pdf

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-588-0341 (Phone)
617-876-2742 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Leigh L. Linden (Contact Author)

The University of Texas at Austin ( email )

Austin, TX 78712
United States
+1 (512) 475-8556 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.leighlinden.com

National Bureau of Economic Research ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.leighlinden.com

Jameel Poverty Action Lab ( email )

30 Wadsworth Street, E53-320
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02142
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.leighlinden.com

Innovations for Poverty Action ( email )

1731 Connecticut Ave, 4th floor
New Haven, CT 20009
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.leighlinden.com

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development (BREAD) ( email )

Duke University
Durham, NC 90097
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.leighlinden.com

Francisco Perez Calle

Ministry of Education (Columbia) ( email )

Bogota
Colombia

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