Evidence from a Randomized Evaluation of the Household Welfare Impacts of Conditional and Unconditional Cash Transfers Given to Mothers or Fathers

49 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2016  

Richard Akresh

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Damien de Walque

World Bank; World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

Harounan Kazianga

Oklahoma State University - Stillwater

Date Written: June 27, 2016

Abstract

This study conducted a randomized control trial in rural Burkina Faso to estimate the impact of alternative cash transfer delivery mechanisms on education, health, and household welfare outcomes. The two-year pilot program randomly distributed cash transfers that were either conditional or unconditional and were given to either mothers or fathers. Conditionality was linked to older children enrolling in school and attending regularly and younger children receiving preventive health check-ups. Compared with the control group, cash transfers improve children's education and health and household socioeconomic conditions. For school enrollment and most child health outcomes, conditional cash transfers outperform unconditional cash transfers. Giving cash to mothers does not lead to significantly better child health or education outcomes, and there is evidence that money given to fathers improves young children's health, particularly during years of poor rainfall. Cash transfers to fathers also yield relatively more household investment in livestock, cash crops, and improved housing.

Keywords: Services & Transfers to Poor, Access of Poor to Social Services, Disability, Economic Assistance, Educational Sciences

Suggested Citation

Akresh, Richard and de Walque, Damien and Kazianga, Harounan, Evidence from a Randomized Evaluation of the Household Welfare Impacts of Conditional and Unconditional Cash Transfers Given to Mothers or Fathers (June 27, 2016). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7730. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2811378

Richard Akresh (Contact Author)

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ( email )

601 E John St
Champaign, IL 61820
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Damien De Walque

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/ddewalque

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

1818 H. Street, N.W.
MSN3-311
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Harounan Kazianga

Oklahoma State University - Stillwater ( email )

Stillwater, OK 74078-0555
United States

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