WORK IN PROGRESS
Inside the Production Function: The Effect of Financial Contracts on Growing Firms' Technology Use
with Selim Gulesci Andreas Madestam and Francesco Loiacono, Mimeo, Stockholm University.
Randomized control trial (Uganda). Fieldwork ongoing. AEA registry number: AEARCTR-0003062.
We examine how key aspects of the most common form of financing-debt-may inhibit young firms' expansion. Starting a business entails learning and risk taking, implying that project returns to investment can start low but increase over time (in other words, be "backloaded") or be uncertain. Also, indivisible start-up costs often require large investments. Meanwhile, standard debt contracts available for micro-entrepreneurs from the formal or semi-formal financial sectors of many developing countries (such as microfinance) stipulate a constant repayment stream and caps on the initial loan size. The interaction of such features of the loan contract and the firm's production technology, may distort investment toward inputs that involve less learning, less uncertainty, and smaller projects; hampering firm growth. To shed light on the extent to which these theoretical mechanisms limit the effectiveness of micro-loans, we designed a randomized controlled trial where randomly chosen Ugandan firm owners, accepted for a loan, were offered amended contracts designed to alleviate one of these constraints. Treated firms, as well as a control group, are followed over a period of 5 years. The project will provide unique evidence on the constraints caused by the interaction of financial structure and technology use.
Performance based incentive payment for loan officers in Microfinance, with Erika Deserranno and Lame Ungwang. Randomized Field Experiment in Uganda, implementation and data collection initiated in fall 2018. Fieldwork completed. AEA registry number: AEARCTR-0004529.
Rotation policies for loan officers in Microfinance, with Erika Deserranno and Lame Ungwang.
Randomized Field experiment in Uganda, implementation and data collection initiated in fall 2018. Fieldwork completed. AEA registry number: AEARCTR-0004891
Using behavioral interventions to improve graduation rates in vocational education, with Naomi Gershoni. Randomized Field Experiment in vocational schools in Israel aimed at increasing graduation rates. Initiated in 2019. Fieldwork ongoing.
The anatomy of Deliberative Decision making, with Vesall Nourani and Maya Duru.
The project uses data from lab in the field experiments in farmer groups in Malawi collected in 2013-16.