Do Donors Get What They Paid for? Micro Evidence on the Fungibility of Development Project Aid
42 Pages Posted: 1 Apr 2005
Date Written: March 2005
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. This paper uses local-level survey data collected for this purpose to test for fungibility of World Bank financing of a rural road rehabilitation project targeted to specific geographic areas of Vietnam. A simple double difference estimator suggests that the project's net contribution to rehabilitated road increments is close to zero, implying complete displacement of funding. However, with better controls for the endogeneity of project placement we find much less evidence of fungibility, with displacement accounting for around one-third of the aid. The results point to the importance of dealing with selection bias in assessing project aid fungibility.
Keywords: Impact evaluation, fungibility of aid, rural roads, Vietnam
JEL Classification: O19, O12, F35
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation