Professor Jose Galdo has co-authored two studies accepted for publication in the World Bank Economic Review, a leading peer-reviewed journal in the field of development economics.
“Demand-Driven Youth Training Programs: Experimental Evidence from Mongolia”
This study uses a randomized controlled trial to analyze the effectiveness of a demand-driven vocational-training program for disadvantaged youth in Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia. Mongolia, a transitional country whose economic structure shifted from a Communist, centrally planned economy to a free-market economy over a relatively short period, offers a new setting in which to test the effectiveness of market-based active-labor-market policies. We find short-term positive impacts on self-employment and skills match, while positive but uncertain effects emerge for employment and earnings. Substantial heterogeneity emerges as relatively older, richer, and better-educated individuals drive these positive effects. A second intervention, in which participants were randomly assigned to receive newsletters with information on market returns to vocational training, shows statistically meaningful effects on the length of exposure to the program (i.e., number of training days attended). These positive impacts, however, do not lead to higher employment or greater earnings.
“Gender Bias in Agricultural Child Labor: Evidence from Survey Design Experiments”
Agricultural labor accounts for the largest share of child labor worldwide. Yet, measurement of farm labor statistics is challenging due to its inherent seasonality, variable and irregular work schedules, and the varying saliences of individuals’ work activities. The problem is further complicated by the presence of widespread gender stratification of work and social lives. This study reports the findings of three randomized survey design interventions conducted over the agricultural coffee calendar in rural Ethiopia to address whether response by proxy rather than self-report has effects on the measurement of child labor statistics within and across seasons. While the estimates do not report differences for boys across all seasons, the analysis shows sizable self/proxy discrepancies in child labor statistics for girls. The main findings have important implications for policymakers about data collection in rural areas in developing countries.