A Methodology for Laboratory Experiments in Developing Countries: Examples from the Busara Center

36 Pages Posted: 1 Oct 2012 Last revised: 18 Nov 2014

See all articles by Johannes Haushofer

Johannes Haushofer

Princeton University - Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

Marie Collins

Innovations for Poverty Action

Giovanna de Giusti

Maseno University

Joseph Njoroge

Innovations for Poverty Action

Amos Odero

Innovations for Poverty Action

Cynthia Onyango

Innovations for Poverty Action

James Vancel

Innovations for Poverty Action

Chaning Jang

Princeton University - Department of Psychology

Maneesh Kuruvilla

University of St. Andrews

Conor Hughes

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: February 24, 2014

Abstract

While Randomized Controlled Trials and lab-in-the-field experiments have become more common in development economics in recent years, the rigor and control of laboratory-based experiments has so far been difficult to access in developing countries. Here we describe the use of various cognitive tests in developing countries, illustrated using data from the Busara Center for Behavioral Economics, a state-of-the-art laboratory for behavioral and experimental economics in Nairobi, Kenya. In addition to we provide information on the development of the lab itself, including data on physical and technical setup and infrastructure, protocols for study administration, respondent and data flow, and subject recruitment, payment, and subject pool composition, and outline how researchers can use the lab.

Keywords: development, laboratory experiments, experimental economics, behavioral economics, psychology

JEL Classification: C93, D03, D87, O12

Suggested Citation

Haushofer, Johannes and Collins, Marie and de Giusti, Giovanna and Njoroge, Joseph and Odero, Amos and Onyango, Cynthia and Vancel, James and Jang, Chaning and Kuruvilla, Maneesh and Hughes, Conor, A Methodology for Laboratory Experiments in Developing Countries: Examples from the Busara Center (February 24, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2155217 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2155217

Johannes Haushofer (Contact Author)

Princeton University - Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs ( email )

Princeton University
Princeton, NJ 08544-1021
United States

Marie Collins

Innovations for Poverty Action ( email )

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

Giovanna De Giusti

Maseno University ( email )

Maseno, 40105
Kenya

Joseph Njoroge

Innovations for Poverty Action ( email )

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

Amos Odero

Innovations for Poverty Action ( email )

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

Cynthia Onyango

Innovations for Poverty Action ( email )

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

James Vancel

Innovations for Poverty Action ( email )

1731 Connecticut Ave, 4th floor
Washington, DC 20009
United States

Chaning Jang

Princeton University - Department of Psychology ( email )

Green Hall
Princeton, NJ 08540
United States

Maneesh Kuruvilla

University of St. Andrews ( email )

North St
Saint Andrews, Fife KY16 9AJ
United Kingdom

Conor Hughes

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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