The Economic and Social Returns to Cash Transfers: Evidence from a Ugandan Aid Program

by Christopher Blattman, Nathan Fiala, Sebastian Martinez
Columbia University, Departments of Political Science and International & Public Affairs, 2013

53 pp. 2.7 MB:
http://cega.berkeley.edu/assets/cega_events/53/WGAPE_Sp2013_Blattman.pdf

The authors randomized a large cash transfer program in northern Uganda. They followed thousands of largely unemployed youth two and four years after receiving grants worth twice their annual income. Most invest the transfers in vocations and earnings rise by at least 40%, especially among the more credit-constrained, patient, and risk-averse. Both male and female returns are high, yet while male controls catch up over time, female controls do not, suggesting the credit constraints facing Ugandan women are more severe.

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