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Cash or Condition? Evidence from a Cash Transfer Experiment

ACHIEVEMENT TESTS ADOLESCENT FERTILITY ADOLESCENT GIRLS ADOLESCENTS AGE OF MARRIAGE ATTENDANCE RATE ATTENDANCE RATES ATTENDANCE RECORDS ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENT AVERAGE SCHOOLING BABY BEHAVIOR CHANGE CAREER CHILD HEALTH CHILD LABOR CHILDBEARING COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT COGNITIVE OUTCOMES COGNITIVE SKILLS COGNITIVE TEST CULTURAL CHANGE CURRICULA DEVELOPING COUNTRIES DISABILITY DISSEMINATION DIVORCE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE EARLY CHILDHOOD EARLY MARRIAGE ECONOMIC GROWTH EDUCATION OF CHILDREN EDUCATIONAL TESTS ENROLLMENT DATA ENROLLMENT INCREASES ENROLLMENT INDICATORS ENROLLMENT RATE ENROLLMENT RATES FAMILY LIFE FAMILY PREFERENCES FEMALE LABOR FORCE FEMALE SCHOOLING FERTILITY FERTILITY RATE FERTILITY RATES FIRST MARRIAGE GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT HEALTH CARE HIV HIV INFECTION HOUSEHOLD ASSETS HOUSEHOLD INCOME HOUSEHOLD SIZE HOUSEHOLD SURVEYS HUMAN CAPITAL HUMAN CAPITAL FORMATION HUMAN RESOURCES HUMAN SCIENCES INTERVENTIONS KNOWLEDGE BASE LABOR MARKET LABOR SUPPLY LACK OF INFORMATION LEARNING LEARNING ACHIEVEMENT LITERATURE LOW BIRTH WEIGHT LOWER FERTILITY MALARIA MARITAL STATUS MARRIAGE AGE MOTHER NATIONAL LEVEL NUMBER OF GIRLS NUTRITION OLD AGE OLD-AGE ORAL CONTRACEPTIVES PAPERS PENSIONS PHYSICAL HEALTH POLICY IMPLICATIONS POLICY RESEARCH POLICY RESEARCH WORKING PAPER PREGNANT WOMEN PRIMARY SCHOOL PRIMARY SCHOOLING PRIMARY SCHOOLS PRINTING PROGRESS PUBLIC SECONDARY SCHOOLS READERS READING READING COMPREHENSION RECORDING ATTENDANCE REGULAR ATTENDANCE REGULAR SCHOOL ATTENDANCE REPETITION RESPECT RURAL AREAS RURAL EDUCATION SAFETY NETS SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM SCHOLASTIC PERFORMANCE SCHOOL ATTENDANCE SCHOOL CHILDREN SCHOOL DAYS SCHOOL DROPOUT SCHOOL ENROLLMENT SCHOOL FEE SCHOOL FEES SCHOOL GIRLS SCHOOL PARTICIPATION SCHOOL SURVEY SCHOOL SURVEYS SCHOOL YEAR SCHOOL YEARS SCHOOL-AGE SCHOOL-AGE GIRLS SCHOOLING SCHOOLS SCIENCE STUDY SECONDARY SCHOOL SEX SEXUAL ACTIVITY SEXUAL BEHAVIOR SEXUALLY ACTIVE SOCIAL MARKETING SPILLOVER STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT SUBSISTENCE FARMING TEACHER TEACHERS TEEN TEEN PREGNANCY TEENAGE GIRLS TEENAGE PREGNANCIES TEENAGE PREGNANCY TEENAGERS TEST SCORES TESTS OF MATHEMATICS URBAN AREAS VULNERABLE CHILDREN YOUNG CHILDREN YOUNG MEN YOUNG WOMEN YOUTH Microdata Set
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Africa | Southern Africa | Malawi
2012-03-19T18:43:25Z | 2012-03-19T18:43:25Z | 2010-03-01

Conditional Cash Transfer programs are "...the world's favorite new anti-poverty device," (The Economist, July 29 2010) yet little is known about the specific role of the conditions in driving their success. In this paper, we evaluate a unique cash transfer experiment targeted at adolescent girls in Malawi that featured both a conditional (CCT) and an unconditional (UCT) treatment arm. We find that while there was a modest improvement in school enrollment in the UCT arm in comparison to the control group, this increase is only 43 percent as large as the CCT arm. The CCT arm also outperformed the UCT arm in tests of English reading comprehension. The schooling condition, however, proved costly for important non-schooling outcomes: teenage pregnancy and marriage rates were substantially higher in the CCT than the UCT arm. Our findings suggest that a CCT program for early adolescents that transitions into a UCT for older teenagers would minimize this trade-off by improving schooling outcomes while avoiding the adverse impacts of conditionality on teenage pregnancy and marriage.

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