NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Rukmini Banerji

Pratham Education Foundation
B- 4/58, Safdarjung Enclave
2nd Floor, New Delhi-110 029
India

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

December 2016From Proof of Concept to Scalable Policies: Challenges and Solutions, with an Application
with Abhijit Banerjee, James Berry, Esther Duflo, Harini Kannan, Shobhini Mukherji, Marc Shotland, Michael Walton: w22931
The promise of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) is that evidence gathered through the evaluation of a specific program helps us—possibly after several rounds of fine-tuning and multiple replications in different contexts—to inform policy. However, critics have pointed out that a potential constraint in this agenda is that results from small, NGO-run “proof-of-concept” studies may not apply to policies that can be implemented by governments on a large scale. After discussing the potential issues, this paper describes the journey from the original concept to the design and evaluation of scalable policy. We do so by evaluating a series of strategies that aim to integrate the NGO Pratham’s “Teaching at the Right Level” methodology into elementary schools in India. The methodology consists o...
October 2016Mainstreaming an Effective Intervention: Evidence from Randomized Evaluations of “Teaching at the Right Level” in India
with Abhijit Banerjee, James Berry, Esther Duflo, Harini Kannan, Shobhini Mukherji, Marc Shotland, Michael Walton: w22746
Previous randomized studies have shown that addressing children’s current learning gaps, rather than following an over-ambitious uniform curriculum, can lead to significant learning gains. In this study, we evaluate a series of efforts to scale up the NGO Pratham’s approach to teaching children according to their actual learning level, in four Indian States. While this approach was previously shown to be extremely effective when implemented with community volunteers outside of school, the objective of these new scale-up evaluations was to develop a model that could be implemented within the government school system. In the first two instances (Bihar and Uttarakhand), the methodology was not adopted by government schoolteachers, despite well-received training sessions and Pratham support. M...
September 2008Pitfalls of Participatory Programs: Evidence From a Randomized Evaluation in Education in India
with Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo, Rachel Glennerster, Stuti Khemani: w14311
Participation of beneficiaries in the monitoring of public services is increasingly seen as a key to improving their efficiency. In India, the current government flagship program on universal primary education organizes both locally elected leaders and parents of children enrolled in public schools into committees and gives these groups powers over resource allocation, and monitoring and management of school performance. However, in a baseline survey we found that people were not aware of the existence of these committees and their potential for improving education. This paper evaluates three different interventions to encourage beneficiaries' participation through these committees: providing information, training community members in a new testing tool, and training and organizing volunte...

Published: Abhijit V. Banerjee & Rukmini Banerji & Esther Duflo & Rachel Glennerster & Stuti Khemani, 2010. "Pitfalls of Participatory Programs: Evidence from a Randomized Evaluation in Education in India," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 1-30, February. citation courtesy of

 
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