Some policy interventions aim to improve development outcomes, such as improved school test scores, indirectly. Instead of building a hospital or providing school books, communities are educated to monitor public services in order to improve them. Some projects encourage communities to demand better services from local or state authorities. The challenge in evaluating these initiatives lies in accounting for this intermediate step. For the TWAWEZA evaluation, AIID has developed a listening device method with high frequency monitoring that is designed to pick up evidence of the effectiveness of this indirect approach. Another project is the KIAT Guru evaluation in Indonesia. Alternatively, communities can be made responsible for the allocation of development funds, e.g. through participatory budgeting. This type of intervention is known as community-based or community-drive development. AIID collaborates with other researchers to evaluate such a programme in the Philippines.

Research staff

Chris Elbers, Jan Willem Gunning, Menno Pradhan, Kimberley Wallaart

Projects

External evaluation of the TWAWEZA initiative, Tanzania
Teacher performance and accountability (KIAT Guru), Indonesia
Impact evaluation of the Kalahi community-driven development programme, Philippines

Publications

M.P. Pradhan, D. Suryadama, A. Beatty, M. Wong, A. Gaduh, A. Alishjabana, R.P. Artha, (2014), ‘Improving educational quality through enhancing community participation: results from a randomized field experiment in Indonesia’, American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, 6, 2, 105 – 126
C.T.M. Elbers, J.W. Gunning, (2014), ‘Evaluation of Development Programs: Randomized Controlled Trials or Regressions?’, World Bank Economic Review, 28, 3, 432 – 445
C.T.M. Elbers, J.W. Gunning, (2014), ‘What Do Development NGOs Achieve?, In: The Oxford Handbook of Africa and Economics: Policies and Practices (forthcoming). Oxford Handbooks Online.

The empowerment of women is a prerequisite for inclusive development and intimately linked to the Sustainable Development Goals. We understand women’s empowerment as the process by which women who have been denied the ability to make strategic life choices acquire such an ability (Kabeer, 1999). AIID research on women’s empowerment has traditionally covered a variety of areas, such as the socio-economic empowerment of disadvantaged and low-caste women in India, sexual empowerment of urban women in Mozambique, and intra-household cooperation and bargaining power in Nigeria. In addition, a gender analysis is commonly included in most of our research projects to enable gender-sensitive evidence-based policy-making. Our study methods range from standard large-scale household surveys, to the collection of weekly financial and sexual diaries, or qualitative methods such as focus group discussions and in-depth interviews.

Research staff

Marije Groot Bruinderink, Wendy Janssens, Menno Pradhan

Projects

Current projects

Family planning and women’s sexual and economic empowerment – RCT of a family planning training programme in the outskirts of an urban agglomeration in Maputo Mozambique
Cooperation in polygamous households
Intra-household resource allocation for health in Nigeria
Previous projects:

Social capital and cooperation: An impact evaluation of a women’s empowerment programme in rural India

Publications

Janssens, W. (2011), “Externalities in program evaluation: the impact of a women’s empowerment program on immunization”, Journal of the European Economic Association, Vol.9(6), pp. 1082-1113. doi: 10.1111/j.1542-4774.2011.01041.x
Janssens, W. (2010), “Women’s empowerment and the creation of social capital in Indian villages”, World Development, Vol. 38(7), pp. 974-988, doi: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2009.12.004.
Janssens, W. (2007), “Social capital and cooperation: An impact evaluation of a women’s empowerment programme in rural India”, Tinbergen Institute doctoral dissertation, Amsterdam: Thela Thesis.