NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Shi Yan

Arizona State University

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Institutional Affiliation: Arizona State University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

March 2019Administrative Data Linking and Statistical Power Problems in Randomized Experiments
with Sarah Tahamont, Zubin Jelveh, Aaron Chalfin, Benjamin Hansen: w25657
The increasing availability of administrative data has led to a particularly exciting innovation in public policy research, that of the “low-cost” randomized trial in which administrative data are used to measure outcomes in lieu of costly primary data collection. Linking data from an experimental intervention to administrative records that track outcomes of interest typically requires matching datasets without a common unique identifier. In order to minimize mistaken linkages, researchers will often use “exact matching” (retaining an individual only if all their demographic variables match exactly in two or more datasets) in order to ensure that speculative matches do not lead to errors in an analytic dataset. We argue that when this approach is used to detect the presence of a binary out...
 
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