Over the last quarter we have published a total of 21 new working papers, policy briefs, research insights, and other publications, spanning the full range of EDI’s activities. Below takes a look at just a selection of these, from whether ordinary citizens or political party leaders are better positioned to select political candidates, to the origins of female genital cutting. We also celebrate the launch of The Handbook of Economic Development and Institutions book, Thicker Diagnostics: Expanding development diagnostics panel discussion, and share our complete video series.

We share new milestones from our research projects, including the successful launch of our Benin Institutional Diagnostic in January, and the strong progress being made on the Bangladesh institutional diagnostic, which will be published in Spring, as well as our fourth country study on Mozambique.

Year in Review 2019 – 20

The Economic Development and Institutions (EDI) programme combines academic excellence with practical impact, delivering strong progress in 2019 and early 2020. Read our new yearly review summarising the core progress made by the EDI programme over the last year.

Working paper: An Experiment in Candidate Selection

Are ordinary citizens or political party leaders better positioned to select political candidates? The answer is unclear: while officials are often better informed about candidate qualifications, they may value traits – such as party loyalty or willingness to pay for the nomination – at odds with identifying the best performer. We partnered with both major political parties in Sierra Leone to experiment on varying how much say voters have in selecting parliamentary candidates.

Women’s Promotions and Intra-Household Bargaining: Evidence from Bangladesh

Hannah Uckat investigates how women’s promotions in the workplace affect bargaining in the household, examining the design of a promotion programme for women in 27 Bangladeshi garment factories to show that women’s bargaining power increases as a result of the promotion.

The Handbook of Economic Development and Institutions

A definitive reference work essential for academics, researchers, and professionals

We are pleased to announce that twenty of our pathfinding papers have been published by Princeton University Press as The Handbook of Economic Development and Institutions. Edited by EDI researchers Jean-Marie Baland, François Bourguignon, Jean-Philippe Platteau, and Thierry Verdier, the book provides an in-depth examination of the relationship between institutions and growth, educational systems, the role of the media, and the intersection between traditional systems of patronage and political institutions. Each chapter covering the frontier research in its area and pointing to new areas of research is the product of extensive workshopping on the part of the contributors.

The path finding papers featured in the book, alongside an additional three papers, are available to read on the EDI website.

Institutional Diagnostics 

  • We held a major dissemination workshop in January for the recently published Benin Institutional Diagnostic study in Cotonou, Benin, to discuss findings from the study with policymakers and stakeholders, and its regional implications. Read the technical report from the workshop and find out more about the Benin Institutional Diagnostic.
  • Milestones are also approaching for the Bangladesh Institutional Diagnostic study, which is nearing completion and will be published in April, and the Bangladesh diagnostic study, which will hold an internal workshop in March.
  • In November, Oxford Policy Management held a development diagnostics panel to discuss ‘Thicker Diagnostics: Expanding development diagnostics’, featuring EDI’s François Bourguignon and Stefan Dercon. Watch the post-event video here.

All other EDI research projects are advancing well – find out more on our website.

The full series of videos featuring EDI researchers and briefly examining the work we’re doing across our research areas, has been released on YouTube. To view all ten videos, from land rights and judicial independence, to reducing the influence of organised crime click here.

A selection of our recent working papers:

We examine how religion impacts formal justice, and detail three key policy implications based on our research in Pakistan.

We test the hypothesis that the slave trade was one of the contributing factors to the spread of female genital cutting.

Women’s increased control of resources such as land and wealth, has been shown to improve their bargaining power in the household, intergenerational transfers, child development, and other indicators of women’s autonomy.

We look at the effect of a policy from Delhi which mandates different frequencies of VAT filing based on self-reported turnover, and examine how frequent reporting is not, in this case, associated with greater VAT collection.

This thematic insight discusses three of our randomised control trials, answering key questions to help better understand the relationship between the functioning of judicial systems and economic growth

Would you like to know more?

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