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En la última década, más de 6 millones de venezolanos han abandonado su país. Alrededor de 1.85 millones se encuentran actualmente en Colombia (GIFMM, 2021). Los desafíos para integrar socioeconómicamente a esta población en el país son innumerables. El 08 de febrero de 2021, el gobierno colombiano tomó la decisión de regularizar su estatus migratorio en Colombia y caracterizarlos a través del Estatuto Temporal de Protección para Venezolanos (ETPV). De acuerdo con datos de Migración Colombia, en menos de un año, más de 1.74 millones de migrantes venezolanos en Colombia finalizaron el proceso de pre-registro (RUMV) y más de un millón finalizaron el registro biométrico, pasos fundamentales para el proceso de regularización. La escala y velocidad de este proceso de regularización es única en el mundo, en particular considerando que ciertos grupos sociales, como los migrantes en condición irregular, son difíciles de encontrar y caracterizar. Por ejemplo, un estudio realizado por investigad...
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Brief
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April 07, 2022
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We use a randomized experiment to compare a workforce training program to cash transfers in Rwanda. Conducted in a sample of poor and underemployed youth, this study measures the impact of the training program not only relative to a control group but relative to the counterfactual of simply disbursing the cost of the program directly to beneficiaries. While the training program was successful in improving a number of core outcomes (productive hours, assets, savings, and subjective well-being), cost-equivalent cash transfers move all these outcomes as well as consumption, income, and wealth. In the head-to-head costing comparison cash proves superior across a number of economic outcomes, while training outperforms cash only in the production of business knowledge. We find little evidence of complementarity between human and physical capital interventions, and no signs of heterogeneity or spillover effects.
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Working Paper
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March 29, 2022
Los barrios marginales y pobres de todo el mundo están ocupados por poderosos grupos criminales que cada vez reclutan más niños y adolescentes. ¿Qué factores llevan a las personas a unirse a estos grupos y cómo pueden los gobiernos evitar el reclutamiento? En Medellín, Colombia, una ciudad caracterizada por una alta presencia de grupos criminales denominados combos, unos investigadores están realizando un estudio para comprender el proceso de reclutamiento, identificar a los niños y los adolescentes en riesgo de ser reclutados y probar diferentes intervenciones para evitar el reclutamiento.
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Brief
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March 29, 2022
Toolkit
The toolkit is aimed at addressing the opportunities and challenges of using digital credit transaction data for consumer protection market monitoring. Digital credit adoption has increased in lower- and middle-income countries over the past decade. These products have differentiated themselves from traditional lending in three primary ways; they are “instant, automated, and remote.” These differences may drive financial inclusion and benefits to borrowers including access to formal credit, reduced transaction costs, and resilience to risk. However, these same attributes may also place consumers at higher risk. In particular, because digital credit is easier to obtain, consumers may find themselves taking on loans they cannot afford or with fees they do not understand. The increase of digital credit also presents researchers, regulators, and financial service providers with an opportunity to more easily monitor consumer protection outcomes. With the automation of these services, provid...
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Research Resource
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March 26, 2022
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We study the impact of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for individuals selected from the general population of poor households in rural Ghana. Results from 2-3 months after a randomized intervention show strong impacts on mental and physical health, cognitive and socioemotional skills, and downstream economic outcomes. We find no evidence of heterogeneity by baseline mental distress; we argue that this is because CBT can improve human capital for a general population of poor individuals through two pathways. First, CBT reduces vulnerability to deteriorating mental health; and second, CBT directly improves bandwidth, increasing cognitive and socioemotional skills and hence economic outcomes.
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Working Paper
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March 21, 2022
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The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated many low- and middle-income countries, causing widespread food insecurity and a sharp decline in living standards. In response to this crisis, governments and humanitarian organizations worldwide have distributed social assistance to more than 1.5 billion people. Targeting is a central challenge in administering these programmes: it remains a difficult task to rapidly identify those with the greatest need given available data. Here we show that data from mobile phone networks can improve the targeting of humanitarian assistance. Our approach uses traditional survey data to train machine-learning algorithms to recognize patterns of poverty in mobile phone data; the trained algorithms can then prioritize aid to the poorest mobile subscribers. We evaluate this approach by studying a flagship emergency cash transfer program in Togo, which used these algorithms to disburse millions of US dollars worth of COVID-19 relief aid. Our analysis compares outcome...
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Published Paper
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March 21, 2022
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Almost half of all deaths of children under five years of age are attributable to malnutrition, and despite the decline in numbers, progress continues to be very slow. Malnutrition and under-nutrition, in particular, affect mainly households living in poverty. Recent research has shown that holistic livelihood programs can have a wide range of benefits for these poor families, from increasing household consumption and income to improving food security and mental health. This evaluation measured the impact of a multifaceted program on nutritional status, productive assets, and income. The program adapts the graduation approach, which combines a comprehensive set of interventions to enable ultra-poor households to develop sustainable livelihoods and resilience. It features a cash unconditional transfer, a productive investment (livestock or seeds), and a nutrition component (distribution of fortified flour), and nutrition education. 
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March 21, 2022
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Digital government -to -person (G2P) payments have emerged as an efficient and safe way to disburse social assistance at scale as countries expand cash transfers to provide economic relief to households affected by COVID -19. The Philippine Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), after experiencing delays and inefficiency during the first tranche of its COVID -19 Social Amelioration Program (SAP) with paper forms, manual processes, and physical cash delivery, moved quickly to digital cash transfers for the second tranche of SAP (SAP 2). It partnered with six financial service providers (FSPs) and provided cash transfers digitally to a significant share of 14 million SAP 2 beneficiaries. This study, carried out by the Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) and the World Bank, in collaboration with DSWD, aims to understand beneficiaries’ experience in receiving digital G2P payments and identify key areas for further strengthening. The study is based on a survey conducted among...
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Report
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March 17, 2022
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A multi-faceted program comprising a grant of productive assets, training, unconditional cash transfers, coaching, and savings has been found to build sustainable income for those in extreme poverty. We focus on two important questions: whether a mere grant of productive assets would generate similar impacts (it does not), and whether access to a savings account with a deposit collection service would generate similar impacts (it does, but they are short-lived).
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Published Paper
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March 17, 2022
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Worldwide, 43 percent of children under the age of 5 are at risk of not reaching their developmental potential. The situation is especially challenging in contexts of forced displacement. This evidence synthesis provides actionable insights into policy and practice to improve outcomes for forcibly displaced children aged 0-3 and their caregivers. We review the literature on parenting programs, interventions that aim to improve early childhood development outcomes by building parenting skills and knowledge and improving parent-child interactions. We also use dual generation theory to explore how such programs could be enhanced by considering other outcomes for caregivers beyond parenting and the unique situation of adolescent caregivers.
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Report
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March 14, 2022
Spanish
ConsultIPA es una consultoría pro-bono de IPA Colombia cuyo objetivo es ayudar a pequeñas organizaciones sin ánimo de lucro a comenzar a implementar un sistema de monitoreo y evaluación. Este documento describe los requisitos y el proceso para aplicar.  Aplicación ConsultIPA (español)
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Research Resource
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March 14, 2022
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This document provides application instructions for the Peace & Recovery (P&R) Program’s call for proposals. Applicants are asked to use the following templates when submitting their applications: Template for Pilot and Full Study Proposals Template for Exploratory Grant Proposals Budget Template (to be used for both Pilot/Full Study and Exploratory Grant Proposals) For more information about the request for proposals and P&R Program, read the Guiding Principles and Funding Priorities, and visit the P&R Competitive Fund page.
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Report
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March 04, 2022
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In mid-2020, IPA partnered with researchers from Yale University, Stanford University, and other organizations like Green Voice in Bangladesh to research different strategies to increase mask-wearing and measure its impact on COVID-19. They found that the now called NORM model, consisting of No-cost free masks distribution, offering information on mask-wearing, Reinforcement in-person and in public, and Modeling and endorsement by trusted leaders tripled mask-wearing, increased physical distancing and reduced COVID-19. IPA partnered with Shakti Foundation to tweak this rural model into an urban context for Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) and replicate the NORM program for an urban population. Overall, the intervention seemed to increase mask-wearing among middle-aged (30 to 50 years old) and men more. It has also been learning to understand the implementation impacts and challenges of the NORM module in urban areas, which has been designed in the rural setting.
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Brief
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February 28, 2022
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While digital financial services have evolved rapidly in Nigeria over the last decade, this growth is largely driven by the already banked population. A joint study by Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) and Inclusion for All investigated three key barriers preventing many from joining the formal financial system: the reliability of financial services, the cost of using these services, and the limited transparency of cost information. The study found that: financial transactions conducted by phone fail often, service providers make it difficult and costly to find accurate pricing information (only 1 in 5 providers offer a toll-free customer care line), and the prices consumers pay can exceed caps set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The findings suggest providers can build trust and usage of these services by strengthening their infrastructure, improving access to accurate pricing information, and increasing compliance with existing price caps.
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Report
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February 16, 2022
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Over the past decade, predatory and fraudulent practices in digital finance and financial technology have increased globally. The use of mobile applications for such purposes is a concern given the increased ubiquity of mobile devices, ongoing concerns about low financial and digital literacy in many population groups, and anecdotal evidence on a proliferation of methods and tools some finance app providers use to exploit vulnerable households and businesses. In addition to the direct harm caused to consumers, this can lead to mistrust of digital finance, which can delay financial inclusion efforts and undermine the benefits of financial technologies. The objective of this project is to explore whether high-frequency app data and applied machine learning techniques can be leveraged to create a system for flagging and reporting highly suspect apps. As a “proof of concept,” the researchers draw on historical app meta and review data for 63 countries covering from January 2020 to April 20...
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Report
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February 10, 2022
Las pequeñas y medianas empresas (PYME) representan una importante fuente de empleo en muchos países de ingresos bajos y medios. Por lo tanto, encontrar las medidas más efectivas para ayudar a las pymes a responder y recuperarse cuando se enfrentan a crisis económicas, como las provocadas por el COVID-19, es de gran relevancia en materia de políticas. En Colombia, los investigadores están evaluando el impacto económico de otorgar préstamos de estímulo a las pymes, distribuidos a través del programa de ayuda COVID-19 del gobierno ("Unidos por Colombia"), en la supervivencia, las ganancias y el empleo.
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Brief
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February 09, 2022
Mejorar la productividad y la competitividad de las exportaciones de las pequeñas y medianas empresas (PYME) es un camino común que toman los gobiernos para promover el desarrollo económico. En Colombia, los investigadores están realizando una evaluación aleatoria para comprobar si la mejora en las prácticas de gestión llevan a las empresas aumentar sus exportaciones, diversificar lo que exportan y hacia dónde exportan, y aumentar la productividad de las exportaciones en el contexto del programa “Colombia Productiva”.
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Brief
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February 09, 2022
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While digital financial services have evolved rapidly in Nigeria over the last decade, this growth is largely driven by the already banked population. A joint study by Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) and Inclusion for All investigated three key barriers preventing many from joining the formal financial system: the reliability of financial services, the cost of using these services, and the limited transparency of cost information. The study found that: financial transactions conducted by phone fail often, service providers make it difficult and costly to find accurate pricing information (only 1 in 5 providers offer a toll-free customer care line), and the prices consumers pay can exceed caps set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The findings suggest providers can build trust and usage of these services by strengthening their infrastructure, improving access to accurate pricing information, and increasing compliance with existing price caps.
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February 08, 2022
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Los retrasos en el crecimiento en la infancia pueden tener efectos en el largo plazo para el desarrollo cognitivo, el rendimiento escolar, la productividad económica en la edad adulta, entre otros. Abordar esto en los primeros años de vida ha demostrado ser la mejor manera de combatir la desnutrición, sin embargo, las familias a menudo carecen de información adecuada sobre las buenas prácticas de alimentación en los primeros años de vida. En Ecuador, nuestro equipo de investigadores están evaluando si enviar información a los cuidadores a través de mensajes de texto aumenta el conocimiento en las familias sobre el desarrollo de la primera infancia, la nutrición y los comportamientos saludables.
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February 08, 2022
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Las irregularidades electorales —actividades ilegales que buscan influir en las elecciones— a menudo amenazan las instituciones democráticas en los países de ingresos bajos y medios. En Colombia, los investigadores llevaron a cabo una evaluación aleatoria para medir el impacto de una intervención que alentaba a los ciudadanos a denunciar irregularidades a una ONG local y que variaba si los candidatos estaban informados sobre la campaña de denuncia. La campaña, realizada a través de Facebook, aumentó la cantidad de denuncias reportadas por los ciudadanos y redujo la cantidad de irregularidades observadas en las elecciones. Esta sencilla intervención fue más costo-efectiva que otros esfuerzos de monitoreo usados tradicionalmente.
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Brief
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February 08, 2022

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