Ideas to Action:

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CGD Policy Blogs


Scatter plot showing expected years of school vs. harmonized test scores.

Does Education Need a QALY and Is LAYS It?

The ‘Learning Adjusted Year of Schooling’ (LAYS) concept, introduced last year by the World Bank, seeks to combine access and learning outcomes into a single measure, allowing funders to compare directly across different kinds of interventions. We like the idea and applaud innovation in measurement, but think LAYS still has some way to go before it’s really ready to be used as a robust measure by funders.

A figure showing the decision tree of determinants of inadequate financial inclusion using digital means

Branch to Root: A New ‘Decision Tree’ Tool to Improve Financial Inclusion

Despite a broad recognition that increased access to financial services can bring significant benefits to the poor, catalyzing economic development, financial inclusion in emerging markets and developing economies continues to lag far behind expectations. While a large number of countries have implemented policy changes to advance digital financial inclusion, results have been mixed. To that end, we are developing a first-ever DFS decision-making tool, A Decision Tree for Improving Financial Inclusion - an analytical framework that allows a systematic identification of the most problematic constraints for financial inclusion in country-specific settings.

A word cloud of the most commonly used words in the titles of Esther Duflu's research papers and other publications.

A Quick Guide to 100+ Publications by Economics Nobel Winner Esther Duflo

Two weeks ago, Esther Duflo won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences<, together with Abhijit Banerjee and Michael Kremer, “for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty.” In the blog post below, you’ll find a quick introduction to more than a hundred of her research publications, including research articles, policy articles summarizing research, book chapters, book reviews, comments on others’ research, and books.

Adobe Stock image of a pile of coins with a rising bar graph overlaid

HIPC with Chinese Characteristics: Why Yesterday’s Debt Relief Is the Wrong Point of Reference for Today’s Crises

Concerns about rising debt risks in developing economies were front and center at the annual meetings. HIPC is a useful reference point as we talk about a new round of debt crises. But thanks to the rise of China as a lender, the creditor community today looks much different from the HIPC creditor community—with implications for any resolution to a debt crisis.