NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

The Returns to Microenterprise Support Among the Ultra-Poor: A Field Experiment in Post-War Uganda

Christopher Blattman, Eric P. Green, Julian C. Jamison, M. Christian Lehmann, Jeannie Annan

NBER Working Paper No. 21310
Issued in June 2015
NBER Program(s):Development Economics, Labor Studies

We show that extremely poor, war-affected women in northern Uganda have high returns to a package of $150 cash, five days of business skills training, and ongoing supervision. 16 months after grants, participants doubled their microenterprise ownership and incomes, mainly from petty trading. We also show these ultrapoor have too little social capital, but that group bonds, informal insurance, and cooperative activities could be induced and had positive returns. When the control group received cash and training 20 months later, we varied supervision, which represented half of the program costs. A year later, supervision increased business survival but not consumption.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w21310

Published: Christopher Blattman & Eric P. Green & Julian Jamison & M. Christian Lehmann & Jeannie Annan, 2016. "The Returns to Microenterprise Support among the Ultrapoor: A Field Experiment in Postwar Uganda," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(2), pages 35-64, April. citation courtesy of

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