Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Crowdsourcing Government Accountability: Experimental Evidence from Pakistan

Tuesday, February 16, 2016 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

This event is cancelled.



Arman Rezaee
University of California San Diego


Michael Clemens
Center for Global Development

We develop and implement a novel, mobile phone-based information clearinghouse, and experimentally evaluate its ability to overcome information asymmetries and improve public service delivery to farmers in Punjab, Pakistan. Like many crowdsourcing websites, our clearinghouse collects and disseminates ratings—here, on the success of government veterinarians in inseminating livestock. We find that, compared to control, farmers receiving ratings enjoy 27 percent higher insemination success. This effect is entirely due to increased veterinarian effort, rather than farmers switching veterinarians. Treatment farmers are also 33 percent more likely to return to a government veterinarian rather than seeking a private provider. These results suggest large welfare benefits from a low-cost information intervention, which holds out hope for improved government accountability for the poor using basic mobile technology.

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Director of Migration, Displacement, and Humanitarian Policy and Senior Fellow

Tuesday, February 16
12:00 -1:00 p.m.

Please bring your lunch; beverages will be provided.