NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Can Variation in Subgroups' Average Treatment Effects Explain Treatment Effect Heterogeneity? Evidence from a Social Experiment

Marianne P. Bitler, Jonah B. Gelbach, Hilary W. Hoynes

NBER Working Paper No. 20142
Issued in May 2014
NBER Program(s):   CH   LS   PE

In this paper, we assess whether welfare reform affects earnings only through mean impacts that are constant within but vary across subgroups. This is important because researchers interested in treatment effect heterogeneity typically restrict their attention to estimating mean impacts that are only allowed to vary across subgroups. Using a novel approach to simulating treatment group earnings under the constant mean-impacts within subgroup model, we find that this model does a poor job of capturing the treatment effect heterogeneity for Connecticut’s Jobs First welfare reform experiment using quantile treatment effects. Notably, ignoring within-group heterogeneity would lead one to miss evidence that the Jobs First experiment’s effects are consistent with central predictions of basic labor supply theory.

You may purchase this paper on-line in .pdf format from SSRN.com ($5) for electronic delivery.

Information about Free Papers

You should expect a free download if you are a subscriber, a corporate associate of the NBER, a journalist, an employee of the U.S. federal government with a ".GOV" domain name, or a resident of nearly any developing country or transition economy.

If you usually get free papers at work/university but do not at home, you can either connect to your work VPN or proxy (if any) or elect to have a link to the paper emailed to your work email address below. The email address must be connected to a subscribing college, university, or other subscribing institution. Gmail and other free email addresses will not have access.

E-mail:

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w20142

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Bastos, Silva, and Verhoogen w20143 Export Destinations and Input Prices
Bitler and Hoynes w19449 The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same? The Safety Net and Poverty in the Great Recession
Banerjee, Meng, Porzio, and Qian w20050 Aggregate Fertility and Household Savings: A General Equilibrium Analysis using Micro Data
List and Samek w20132 The Behavioralist as Nutritionist: Leveraging Behavioral Economics To Improve Child Food Choice and Consumption
Mincer Labor Force Participation of Married Women: A Study of Labor Supply
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us