Research in development economics has been transformed by the increase and feasibility of field and lab experiments in economics. The 2019 Nobel Prize in Economics was awarded to Banerjee, Duflo, and Kremer because “in just two decades, their new experiment-based approach has transformed development economics.”
Experiments are now one of the main tools to understand and address several sources of inequality, such as differences in access to health and education, gender roles and bargaining within the household, inclusion in financial systems, and taxation.
This course will introduce students to state-of-the-art experimental methods in development economics. Students will get the basics of randomized controlled trials and lab-in-the-field experiments and study applications of these methods on some of the main topics in development economics.
This course is targeted at students interested in the experimental method in economics and/or learning about the main topics in development economics. The main goal is to familiarize students with experimental methods through applications to the main issues in development.
Specifically, students will:
- Think critically about the causes and solutions to issues in the developing world
- Learn the basics of the design and analysis of experiments
- Formulate their own experiment addressing one issue in development economics
Course leader bio
Catalina Franco is a researcher at the FAIR Insight Team at the Centre of Excellence FAIR (Centre for Experimental Research on Fairness, Inequality and Rationality). She is also a postdoctoral researcher at the Economics Department at the Norwegian School of Economics (NHH). Before joining FAIR, Catalina obtained her Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Michigan, USA.
Catalina’s main research interests are in the fields of development, behavioral and labor economics. Her main current projects focus on improving gender equality in education decisions, academic beliefs and performance, and access to leadership positions in community initiatives in developing countries.