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Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL)

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Displaying 1 - 15 of 35 news clips related to this topic.

National Public Radio (NPR)

Profs. Esther Duflo and Abhijit Banerjee join NPR’s Planet Money for overrated or underrated, a game in which Banerjee and Duflo, winners of the 2019 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, “rate everything from bread to foreign aid to dating an economist.”


A new working paper by MIT researchers details how the use of a universal basic income (UBI) helped people in Kenya with difficult economic situations, writes Kelsey Piper for Vox. The researchers found that the UBI provided “income benefits in good times and then stability benefits during bad times,” says Prof. Tavneet Suri.

BBC News

BBC reporter Dave Edmonds speaks to Prof. Esther Duflo, co-founder of J-PAL, about her use of field studies and randomized control trials to test the effectiveness of programs in developing countries. Duflo explains that by examining data from randomized control trials, “out of the noise emerges some kind of melody of the logic of behavior.”

U.S. News & World Report

In an article published by U.S. News & World Report, Jill Barshay writes about a new study by J-PAL researchers that examines the effectiveness of specific educational technologies. Vincent Quan of J-PAL North American explains that, “we wanted to find all the studies and distill the main lessons so that decision makers can decide which programs to scale up and invest in.”


The Economist highlights a study by J-PAL researchers examining the effectiveness of certain educational technologies. The researchers found that, “in nearly all the 41 studies which compared pupils using adaptive software with peers who were taught by conventional means the software-assisted branch got higher scores.”


Writing for CNBC, Ali Montag highlights MIT’s MicroMasters programs and how they offer students around the world a new path to a graduate degree. Montag notes that passing students from the MicroMasters in data, economics and development policy, “are eligible to apply for a master's program on campus at MIT.”


Forbes reporter Kevin Murnane writes about how MIT researchers have used a computer vision system to examine how several American cities physically improved or deteriorated over time. Murnane writes that the study “provides important support for nuanced versions of traditional theories about why urban neighborhoods change over time.”

United Press International (UPI)

UPI reporter Amy Wallace writes that MIT researchers have applied a computer vision system to help quantify the physical improvement of American neighborhoods. The researchers found that “density of highly educated residents, proximity to central business districts and other attractive areas, and the initial safety score assigned by the computer system are strongly related to improvements.”


Prof. Esther Duflo speaks with WBUR’s Fred Thys about MIT’s MicroMasters in development economics. Thys explains that the new MicroMasters program allows students, “to take rigorous courses online for credit, and if they perform well on exams, to apply for a master's degree program on campus.”

Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Jeremy Fox writes about a new study by MIT researchers examining whether math games can be beneficial in helping children learn. The researchers found that, “children who played math games consistently showed a better grasp of the concepts…but that understanding did not appear to help in elementary school.”


Writing for STAT, Anna Spier, a senior policy associate for J-PAL, emphasizes the importance of relying on scientific evidence when policymakers determine which opioid addiction programs to fund. “As governments and philanthropists collaborate to learn what’s working to fight opioid addiction, establishing an infrastructure to share knowledge across local, state, and federal agencies will accelerate their collective work.”


In a Guardian article about how technology can be used to help refugees, Tazeen Dhunna Ahmad highlights MIT’s Refugee ACTion Hub (ReACT). ReACT is aimed at finding, “digital learning opportunities for a lost generation of children who, as a result of forced displacement, are losing their education.”

Hechinger Report

Quentin Palfrey, executive director of J-PAL North America, writes for The Hechinger Report about the need to simplify college financial aid applications. Palfrey notes that easing the “financial aid application process can make the difference between whether students go to college or end their formal education — and make an important step toward closing the stark inequalities in higher education in our country.”

Open Magazine

Prof. Abhijit Banerjee and Prof. Vipin Narang were highlighted as part of Open Magazine’s list featuring some of the leading thinkers on India. Banerjee was spotlighted for his research on alleviating poverty in India, and Narang for his work examining India’s nuclear doctrine.


In an article for Governing, Quentin Palfrey, executive director of J-PAL North America, outlines five strategies for creating evidence-based policymaking. “Replacing hunches with facts has dramatic consequences for the efficacy of government programs, particularly those that deliver services to assist the poorest in our society,” Palfrey advises.