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.

2015
Karlan, D., Knight, R., Udry, C.

A randomized trial was conducted in urban Ghana in which tailoring microenterprises received advice from an international consulting firm, cash, both, or neither.

2015
Oswald, A. J., Proto, E., Sgroi, D.

Some firms say they care about the well-being and “happiness” of their employees. But are such claims hype or scientific good sense? We provide evidence, for a classic piece rate setting, that happiness makes people more productive. In three different styles of experiment, randomly selected individuals are made happier. The treated individuals have approximately 12% greater productivity. A fourth experiment studies major real-world shocks ðbereavement and family illnessÞ. Lower happiness is systematically associated with lower productivity.

2015
Schoar, A.

This experiment in Colombia will test the impact of a business training programme. Results forthcoming.

2015

Will increased exposure to the principles of effectuation accelerate novice entrepreneurs’ development of entrepreneurial expertise? What kind of pedagogical tools and methods can provide that exposure and opportunities for deliberate practice? The principles of effectuation [www.effectuation.org], a set of heuristics underlying how expert entrepreneurs make decisions during new venture creation, are increasingly being used by entrepreneurship educators, consultants and practitioners.

2015
Regele, M., Canales, R.

Why does growth stall in high-growth potential, second-stage companies, and can we intervene to overcome this? This research seeks to address why growth rates so often peter out in adolescent firms, and why so few make it to “grownup” status. The experimental trial will also seek to identify and test specific policy interventions to reinvigorate growth in these situations. The project will have three phases.

2015
Nathan, M., Overman, H., Olmo, S.

Working with one of the largest tech incubators in the UK, this trial will deploy a multi-site RCT in two different cities. After pre-selection, entry into the incubator will be randomised for 100 firms per site. The experiment will then explore post-treatment outcomes including survival, recombination, and changes in post-treatment revenue, employment and level of external finance raised.
Using interviews and surveys we will also explore whether different parts of the treatment vary in their effectiveness (e.g. mentoring versus peer to peer interactions). 

2015
Rosendahl Huber, L.

This study reports on a randomized field experiment conducted in the Netherlands to estimate the (long-term) effect of a short personalized tax training program on the performance and tax compliance of first-time entrepreneurs. The tax training was expected to have an impact on business performance and different aspects of tax compliance through better financial decision making and more relevant tax knowledge.

2015
Fairlie, R.W., Karlan, D., Zinman, J.

Is the GATE Programme/Entrepreneurship training a valid response to various forms of market failure (allocative inefficiency in credit, labour, insurance and human capital markets)? Can such a programme have an effect on business sales, earnings or employees?

2015
Higuchi, Y., Namb, V. H., Sonobec, T.

A randomized controlled trial of short-term management training for small manufacturers was conducted in two study sites in Vietnam and collected follow-up data repeatedly for
two years to assess longer-term impacts than the existing studies of management training.

2015
Lee, D., Fehder, D., Hochberg, Y., Floyd, E. J.

Many resources, such as business acumen are thought to feed into entrepreneurial success. However, an open question is whether the tools and frameworks available to nascent startups are causally related to their successes in the areas of financing, employment and revenue growth, valuations, etc. In this study, we use a large-scale RCT to assess the impact of entrepreneurship skills training on startup decisions and outcomes across the U.S. In the study, startups associated co-working spaces are offered payment to complete a series of surveys tracking their outcomes over two years.

2015
Llamas, S.

The Good Exporting Practices program in Argentina aims to increase the success in the foreign markets of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) through supporting better practices in 7 core areas: i) strategy, ii) identification and segmentation of markets, iii) design and adaptation of the product, iv) production, v) communication, vi) distribution, and vii) administration. The Good Exporting Practices program targets firms that produce differentiated food products in various geographical regions in Argentina.

2015
Valdivia, M.

With millions of women around the developing world thrown into self-employment but with low productivity, increasing the profitability of their businesses is highly relevant for poverty reduction and gender equity.

2015
Castro, L., Hallak, J.

Evaluation comparing the impact of a managerial consulting program with training on export business models in Córdoba, Argentina. Results forthcoming.

2014
Cho, Y., Honorati, M.

Entrepreneurship programmes have a strong positive effect on youths, particularly on labour-market activities and business-practice outcomes, and improve business knowledge and practice, particularly for existing entrepreneurs. However, there is no evidence that this translates into improved business performance and increased income.

2014
Georgiadis, A., Pitelis, C.

We investigate the relationship between employees' and managers' training and firm performance using a policy intervention that randomly assigned training support to small‐ and medium‐sized enterprises in the UK accommodation and food service sector. Because the number of firms self‐selected into training exceeded available places, training was randomly assigned to some firms, resulting in a randomized natural experimental design that allowed us to identify the average effect of training on treated firms.

2014
Haines, H.

This paper explores the effectiveness of goal setting and accountability within group-based entrepreneurship initiatives in creating human capital. The study uses a randomized cluster trial to compare the experimental and control groups of entrepreneurs. The results suggest that frequent goal setting and accountability in group settings provides a greater number of learning experiences and human capital development opportunities available to entrepreneurs than those that did not engage in the same level of goal setting.

2014
Glaub, M., Frese, M., Fischer, S., Hoppe, M.

This particular management training was successful at improving knowledge and intangible skills that translated into successful organisational medium- to long-run outcomes for small businesses.

2013
Bruhn, M., Zia, B.

A business and financial literacy programme in Bosnia and Herzegovina showed no effect on business survival but appeared to have some limited effects on improving participant's business practices.

2012
Schoar, A.

Evaluation of two different entrepreneurship training programmes and access to certain types of capital in Colombia. Preliminary results available. Main results forthcoming.

2012
McKenzie, D., Woodruff, C.

While research is advancing quickly in the area of business training and entrepreneurship evaluations in the developing world, many of the effects are still unknown and are highly dependent on the context.

2011
Karlan, D., Valdivia, M.

Most academic and development policy discussions about microentrepreneurs focus on credit constraints and assume that subject to those constraints, the entrepreneurs manage their business optimally. Yet the self-employed poor rarely have any formal training in business skills. A growing number of microfinance organizations are attempting to build the human capital of microentrepreneurs in order to improve the livelihood of their clients and help further their mission of poverty alleviation.

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