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CEGA in the News

Ted at TEDxBerkeley

Mar 25, 2014 - CEGA Faculty Director, Ted Miguel, spoke to an enthralled theatre on climate, conflict, and African development at the annual TEDx Berkeley conference on Saturday, February 8th. More than 1,700 attendees packed into Zellerbach Hall for a full day of presentations by leaders and visionaries called upon to "rethink", "redefine", and "recreate". Ted's talk is highlighted an an "Editor's Pick" on the official TEDx website. View the video here!

Rise in violence 'linked to climate change'

Aug 2, 2013 - CEGA Faculty Director, Edward Miguel and co-authors Solomon Hsiang and Marshall Burke are featured with the BBC for their new study linking climate change to human violence. The researchers reviewed 60 studies from around the world with data spanning hundreds of years and found consistent and strong correlations between climate change and human conflict. Findings from the study suggest that a global temperature rise of 2 degrees Celsius could increase the rate of intergroup conflicts, such as civil wars, by over 50 percent in many parts of the world.

Will rising temperatures derail Africa's rise?

Apr 26, 2013 - World Bank poverty economist Tom Bundervoet discusses ongoing work by CEGA Faculty Director Ted Miguel on the impacts of climate change on human violence. Applying a common statistical framework to a large number of studies, Miguel and his co-authors Marshall Burke and Solomon Hsiang find a remarkably consistent and strong correlation between exceptionally high temperatures and manifestations of violence.

What's at Stake in the Kenyan Election?

Mar 6, 2013 - CEGA visiting scholar and EASST affiliate Amos Njuguna was featured on NPR's "Forum With Michael Krasny" discussing the Kenyan presidential election. Amos, an Assistant Professor of Finance at the United States International University in Kenya, provides his insights on what the election means for Kenya, as well as the challenges faced during the actual election process.

Ghana's John Dramani Mahama: Man of the People?

Dec 3, 2012 - CEGA Faculty Director Edward Miguel is quoted in this week's Newsweek article, which discusses Ghana's role in the economic and political development of Africa. According to the IMF, Africa is expected to become the world's fastest-growing region over the next five years. President John Dramani Mahama of Ghana believes that his country will be a leader in Africa's emergence on the global stage.

From Schooling to Learning

Sep 18, 2012 - A nationwide survey of primary schools in India by Karthik Muralidharan and colleagues finds that pupil-teacher ratios fell by 20 per cent from 2003 to 2012. Yet literacy and numeracy continue to lag, suggesting the need for new strategies. For example, Muralidharan has shown that providing teachers with modest bonuses can improve teacher performance and student learning outcomes.

Food for the Hungry Sees Incredible Success with De-Worming Children in Burundi

Sep 11, 2012 - Research led by Edward Miguel and Michael Kremer provides strong evidence that school-based deworming programs can impact school attendance and, in the long term, increase adult earnings. Burundi’s Ministry of Health now provides deworming to 3 million school-aged children each year, in partnership with NGO Food for the Hungry.

Better housing for poor to be tested in South America

Sep 10, 2012 - Poor and unsafe housing is a serious problem for millions of people living in slums across the world. Paul Gertler is working with researchers in Latin America and the UK to evaluate the impact of constructing inexpensive houses in informal settlements across Latin America. The researchers work with a youth-led organization called Un Techo Para Mi País (UTPMP) or TECHO, which is now rolling out more durable and environmentally-friendly houses in Brazil and Ecuador.

Joint Response to Cochrane Study on Education and Deworming

Jul 20, 2012 - A recent Cochrane Collaboration summary of the evidence on treating school-age children for soil-transmitted intestinal worms (or STH) is incomplete and misleading. Review a new statement by CEGA, Deworm the World, Innovations for Poverty Action, and the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab on the evidence justifying mass school-based deworming.

Despite Grim Headlines, Africa Is Booming

Jul 11, 2012 - CEGA Faculty Director Ted Miguel discusses Africa’s economic growth on NPR’s Talk of the Nation. Commonly overshadowed by headlines about violence and poverty, Africa is now home to six out of the ten fastest growing economies in the world. Professor Miguel examines how the rise of mobile technology, improved infrastructure development, and international business partnerships have contributed to better standards of living and a high potential for future generations of growth.

Would Paying Politicians More Attract Better Politicians?

Jun 21, 2012 - Do higher public sector wages improve the quality of politicians? CEGA Affiliates Fred Finan and Ernesto Dal Bo are working alongside other researchers to answer this question in Latin America. In Brazil, Fred Finan and Claudio Ferraz find evidence that higher wages increase political competition, while subsequently improving the quality of legislators.

Mobile Money and Direct Cash Transfers

May 8, 2012 - GiveDirectly, an NGO founded by a group of researchers including CEGA Affiliate Paul Niehaus, is pioneering a new way of delivering cash transfers by using mobile technology to send unconditional cash transfers directly to recipients in Kenya. By eliminating the middleman, this direct mobile transfer provides an efficient and effective way to transfer money and reduces the opportunity for corruption.

What Determines India's Right-to-Work Program Wages

Apr 25, 2012 - CEGA Affiliate Paul Niehaus and Sandip Sukhtankar have found unique ways to analyze the impact of India's landmark right-to-work program. In this evaluation, they uncover that worker wages are pocketed by local officials, but only up to a point; where workers have an outside income-generating option, local officials pay them just enough so that the workers (and their wages) do not “exit” out of the program for the alternative.

In India, A Small Pill with Positive Side Effects

Apr 8, 2012 - Worms affect 600 million school-age children worldwide, but a study co-authored by CEGA Faculty Director, Ted Miguel, has played a role in 'Deworming the World', one country at a time. This New York Times article describes how an evaluation of a 30,000-person deworming program in Kenya has been translated into national initiatives targeting millions of children globally.

African Elections: How to Save Votes

Mar 28, 2012 - Could smartphones help reduce electoral fraud in Africa and in other regions? Local researchers were deployed to polling stations armed with digital cameras and smartphones to take photographs of the publicly posted election tallies. The research found that this alone can cut electoral fraud by up to 60%.

The Economics of Corruption

Mar 2, 2012 - Is corruption a result of socio-cultural norms or legal enforcement? CEGA Faculty Director, Ted Miguel, with collaborator Raymond Fisman, finds that it is both. Their study of country corruption as measured by parking violations of UN diplomats is featured in this week's Hindu Business Line.

Making the case for rigorous, evidence-based policymaking

Feb 16, 2012 - Rachel Glennerster, executive director of the MIT Poverty Action Laboratory, explain how they used randomized control trials to discern what worked in poverty reduction and what didn't. Quite simply, things they thought would work did not, and things people assumed would not work proved surprisingly cost-effective. By building a rigorous evidence base, more effective policies could be designed, based on the ways people actually behave rather than guesses about how they might behave.

What Can Mexico Teach Us About School Choice?

Feb 8, 2012 - Paul Gertler's study on the Mexican education program, Apoyo a la Gestion Escolar (School Management Support), demonstrates that incentives to increase parental involvement in schools can lead to a decrease in failing grades and grade repetition for their children in primary school. "What Can Mexico Teach Us About School Choice?" discusses the highlights of study and offers a commentary on how such findings in Mexico can inform the debate on vouchers in the US.