IGL Trials Database

IGL curates a database with randomised controlled trials in the field of innovation, entrepreneurship and growth. Browse our list of topics, see it as a map, or use the search function below.

2021
Anderson S., Mckenzie D.

This study asks why more small firms in developing countries do not use the market for professional business services like accounting, marketing, and human resource specialists and asks how this could be altered.

2020
Van den Berg, G.J., Dauth, C., Homrighausen, P., Stephan, G.

Using survey and register data, this experiment estimates the effects of the information treatment brochure on awareness of WeGebAU, on take-up of WeGebAU and other training, and on subsequent employment.

2020
Hjort, J., Iyer, V., de Rochambeau, G.

This paper hypothesizes that many productive firms in poor countries stagnate due to informational barriers to winning wholesale contracts.

2020
Gallus, J., Jung, O.S., Lakhani, K.

This paper explores what might motivate employees to participate in internal crowdsourcing, a peer-based approach to innovation.

2020
Bettinger, E., Chirikov, I., Kizilcec, R.F., Maloshonok, N., Semenova, T.

This trial proposes to evaluate a model for scaling up affordable access to effective STEM education through national online education platforms.

2020

This paper discusses implementing a lab-in-the-field experiment with 334 Turkish loan officers to test for the presence, and learn about the mechanisms, of gender discrimination in small business lending.

2020
Sandvik, J., Saouma, R., Seegert, N., Stanton, C.

This field experiment was conducted in a sales firm to test whether improving knowledge flows between coworkers affects productivity.

2020
Gray, G., Guinan, E., Lakhani, K., Lane, J., Menietti, M., Ranu, H., Teplitskiy, M.

This paper investigates the role of information sharing among experts as the driver of evaluation decisions.

2020
Cai, J., Wang, S.Y.

In this paper, a randomised experiment measures the effects of workers at an automobile manufacturing firm evaluating their managers on worker and firm outcomes.

2020
Aker, J., Blumenstock, J., Dillon, B.

A randomized control trial in central Tanzania, centered on the production and distribution of a ”Yellow Pages” phone directory with contact information for local enterprises.

2020
Coville, A., Osman, A., Piza, C.

The study is an impact evaluation of a training program that induced SMEs to adopt broadband connections, establish presence on online retail and potentially export their goods or services.

2020
Boudreau, K., Kaushik, N.

This paper reports on a large platform-based field experiment in which 97,696 U.S. university-educated individuals were given the opportunity to join a tech-related product development activity.

2020
Kim, H.

This paper asks to what extent firms are aware of readily available information on key competitor decisions, and how this information impacts firms’ strategic choices.

2020
Hasan, S., Koning, R.

This paper evaluates the effect of joint tasks on the creation of network ties with data from a novel field experiment with 112 aspiring entrepreneurs.

2020
Acimovic, J., Balasubramanian, K., Drake, D., Parker, C.

This trial investigates the best way to help agents perform better, as firms providing products and services to low income Base of the Pyramid (BOP) customers are increasingly utilizing independent contractor agents rather than employees in their distribution models.

2020
Gertler, P., Higgins, S., Malmendier, U., Ojeda, W.

This paper tests the role of three behavioral biases: present bias, limited memory, and overconfidence about memory.

2020
Jin, Y., Sun, Z.

Expansion of e-commerce presents new opportunities for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to enter broader market at lower costs, but the SMEs face barriers to growth after entry. To facilitate new entrants to overcome these barriers, this paper explores implementing a training program as a randomized controlled experiment with over two million new sellers on a large e-commerce platform.

2020
Graff Zivin, J., Lyons, E.

This paper compares how two common incentive schemes affect innovative performance in a field experiment run in partnership with a large life sciences company.

2020
Dimitriadis, S., Koning, R.

What is preventing entrepreneurs and managers from forming peer connections themselves? This paper argues that entrepreneurs may be under-networked because they lack the necessary social skills that allow them to match efficiently with knowledgeable peers.

2020
Carson, R., Graff Zivin, J.S., Louviere, J., Sadoff, S., Shrader Jr, J.G.

This experiment tries to understand how managers respond to uncertainty when making research and development decisions. Three experiments were conducted with master’s degree students in a program focused on the intersection of business and technology.

2019
Gornall, W., and I. A. Strebulaev

We study gender and race in high-impact entrepreneurship within a tightly controlled random field experiment. We sent out 80,000 pitch emails introducing promising but fictitious start-ups to 28,000 venture capitalists and business angels. Each email was sent by a fictitious entrepreneur with a randomly selected gender (male or female) and race (Asian or White). Female entrepreneurs received an 8% higher rate of interested replies than male entrepreneurs pitching identical projects. Asian entrepreneurs received a 6% higher rate than White entrepreneurs.

2019
Minni, V., Bandiera, O., Ashraf, N.

Differences in productivity may be driven by heterogeneity in skills but also the extent to which individuals are motivated to do their job over and above financial compensation. The proposed research will unpack the sources of intrinsic motivation and test whether these can be leveraged to increase productivity. To do so we will run a cross-country field experiment in collaboration with a multinational company that offers one-day workshops that guide employees on how to connect their individual purpose with their work.

2019
Burnette, J. L., Pollack, J. M., Forsyth, R. B.

Despite mounting interest in growth mindset interventions, this approach has yet to be applied to the domain of entrepreneurship. In the present research, we developed and tested if a growth mindset intervention could be leveraged to promote students’ entrepreneurial self-efficacy and if this, in turn, predicted career development (i.e., academic interest, career interest, task persistence, and academic performance). We report on our findings, from an Open Science Framework (OSF) preregistered study, that is a randomized controlled trial implementing a growth mindset intervention.

2019
Tobro, T., Ulltveit-Moe, K., H., Moxnes, A.

This study is a randomized controlled trial (RCT) on the effects of mentoring on SMEs in Norway. We aim to get a better understanding of firm development and dynamics in the presence of public interventions. Does mentoring affect firm performance and firm-survival? Does it matter what type of state aid a firm is granted; mentoring versus the financial equivalent of the service? 

2019
Shane, S., Clingingsmith D., Drover W., and Cerf M.

We explore how variation in entrepreneurs' displayed passion affects informal investor interest in start-up ventures by examining neural responses to entrepreneurs' pitches using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). We find that founders displaying high passion increase investor neural engagement by 39% and investor interest in the venture by 26% over those displaying low passion. A one standard deviation increase in neural engagement is associated with an 8% percent increase in investors' interest in investing in a start-up company relative to the mean.

2019
Bapna, S., Ganco, M., and Qiu, L.

User entrepreneurs are responsible for the most important innovations in many industries, but little research has explored the performance of firms founded by user entrepreneurs. While user entrepreneurs have a deep knowledge of customer needs that facilitates the identification of innovative solutions, they tend to lack the relevant business knowledge (e.g., market, production, operational and organizational) to successfully exploit opportunities and grow their ventures.

2019
Muehlfeld, K., Rigtering, C., Weitzel, U.

Individual-level opportunity recognition processes are vital to corporate entrepreneurship. However, little is known regarding how managerial communication impacts the effectiveness of idea suggestion systems in stimulating individuals' participation in intrapreneurial ideation. Integrating self-determination theory, creativity, and framing research, we theorize how different ways of inviting employees to submit proposals (opt-out/opt-in registration; provision of examples) affect the number and quality of submitted ideas.

2019
Meager, R.

In this paper, meager jointly estimates the average effect and the heterogeneity in effects across seven studies using Bayesian hierarchical models.

2019
Bouguen, A., Frölich, M., Hörner, D., Wollni, M.

In this study we assess the effects of a decentralized extension program and an additional video intervention on the adoption of integrated soil fertility management (ISFM) among 2,382 farmers in Ethiopia using a randomized controlled trial. ISFM should enhance soil fertility and productivity by combining organic and inorganic soil amendments. We find that both extension-only and extension combined with video increase ISFM adoption and knowledge.

2019
Gambardella, A., Camuffo, A., Cordova, A.

A classical approach to collecting and elaborating information to make entrepreneurial decisions combines search heuristics such as trial and error, effectuation, and confirmatory search. This paper develops a framework for exploring the implications of a more scientific approach to entrepreneurial decision making. The panel sample of our randomized control trial includes 116 Italian startups and 16 data points over a period of about one year.

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