NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Matthew Chingos

Program on Education Policy and Governance
Harvard University
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NBER Working Papers and Publications

December 2013Endogenous Stratification in Randomized Experiments
with Alberto Abadie, Martin R. West: w19742
Researchers and policy makers are often interested in estimating how treatments or policy interventions affect the outcomes of those most in need of help. This concern has motivated the increasingly common practice of disaggregating experimental data by groups constructed on the basis of an index of baseline characteristics that predicts the values that individual outcomes would take on in the absence of the treatment. This article shows that substantial biases may arise in practice if the index is estimated, as is often the case, by regressing the outcome variable on baseline characteristics for the full sample of experimental controls. We analyze the behavior of leave-one-out and repeated split sample estimators and show they behave well in realistic scenarios, correcting the large bias ...
 
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