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.

2022
Bruhn, M., Piza, C.

This paper tests whether providing more information on business practices can lead firms to seek out advice and improve their practices. The authors collaborated with a business advice provider in Brazil to implement a randomized experiment with 866 small firms. The treatment groups received different versions of an information sheet that benchmarked business practices to other firms and listed five practices to improve.

2022
De Oliveira, P.

The study investigates the role of information constraints and behavioral biases in the under-adoption of key business practices by micro-enterprises in Brazil. We combine a randomized control trial with online surveys to study these questions.

2022
Casaburi, L., Reed, T.

Interference across competing firms in RCTs can be informative about market structure. An experiment that subsidizes a random subset of traders who buy cocoa from farmers in Sierra Leone illustrates this idea. Interpreting treatment-control differences in prices and quantities purchased from farmers through a model of Cournot competition reveals differentiation between traders is low. Combining this result with quasi-experimental variation in world prices shows that the number of traders competing is 50 percent higher than the number operating in a village.

2022
Catalini, C., Oettl, A., Roche, M.P.

We examine the influence of physical proximity on between-startup knowledge spillovers at one of the largest technology co-working hubs in the United States. Relying on the random assignment of office space to the hub's 251 startups, we find that proximity positively influences knowledge spillovers as proxied by the likelihood of adopting an upstream web technology already used by a peer startup.

2022
Anderson, S., Kankanhalli, S., Iacovone, L., Narayanan, S.

Across developing economies, cash is the conduit for retail transactions. Policymakers, multinational product manufacturers and marketers of electronic payment systems are interested in understanding how to stimulate the growth of electronic payments in emerging markets. In this paper, we investigate what hinders the adoption of e-payment technology by traditional retailers, in particular, whether barriers to adoption are technological, informational or financial in nature.

2022
Anderson, S. J., McKenzie, D.

. A randomized experiment is conducted a in Nigeria to test the relative effectiveness of these different approaches in improving business practices.

2022
Iacovone, L., Maloney, W., McKenzie, D.

Differences in management quality are an important contributor to productivity differences across countries. A key question is then how to best improve poor management in developing countries. We test two different approaches to improving management in Colombian auto parts firms. The first uses intensive and expensive one-on-one consulting, while the second draws on agricultural extension approaches to provide consulting to small groups of firms at approximately one-third of the cost of the individual approach.

2022
Bernstein, S., Mehta, K., Townsend, R.R., & Xu T.

This study analyses a field experiment conducted on AngelList Talent, a large online search platform for startup jobs.

2022
Catalini, C., Oettl, A., Roche, M.P.

We examine the influence of physical proximity on between-startup knowledge spillovers at one of the largest technology co-working hubs in the United States. Relying on the random assignment of office space to the hub's 251 startups, we find that proximity positively influences knowledge spillovers as proxied by the likelihood of adopting an upstream web technology already used by a peer startup.

2022
Bartos, B., Castro, S., Czura, K., Opitz, T.

We seek to understand what is limiting women's access to finance, in particular for highly skilled start-up entrepreneurs. To investigate supply side constraints, we run a lab-in-the-field experiment in which loan officers in Uganda evaluate several business ideas based on real pitch decks from start-ups. We separate biases in idea evaluation from other constraints (such as gender specific differences in the ability to implement a project, or in external constraints that start-up entrepreneurs are facing).

2022
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.

2022
Ubfal, D., Arraiz, I., Beuermann, D., Frese, M., Maffioli, A., Verch, D.

A randomized control trial with 945 entrepreneurs in Jamaica shows positive shortterm impacts of soft-skills training on business outcomes. The effects are concentrated among men, and disappear twelve months after the training.

2022
Martínez Alvear, C.

This impact evaluation aims to measure the effect of a program that combines business training, mentoring, and a large cash transfer on high-potential small and medium businesses in Chile. 250 out of the top 500 firms participating in a business plan competition will be randomly selected to receive all three components of the program, while the remaining firms will receive none of them.

2022
Colonnelli, E., Li, B., Liu, E.

We study the demand for government participation in China’s venture capital and private equity market. We conduct a large-scale, non-deceptive field experiment in collaboration with the leading industry service provider, through which we survey both sides of the market: the capital investors and the private firms managing the invested capital by deploying it to high-growth entrepreneurs. Our respondents together account for nearly $1 trillion in assets under management.

2021
Cusolito, A.P., McKenzie, D.

This experiment tests the impact of a program with the main goal of helping firms to attract new customers, expand markets, adapt their business model, and bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic by boosting demand for their products.

2021
Calder-Wang, S., Gompers, P., Huang, K.

This paper studies the role of diversity and performance in the entrepreneurial teams.

2021
Novelli , E., Spina, C.

Prior research suggests that firms in entrepreneurial settings benefit from a scientific approach to decision making that combines cognitive and evidence-based components. But to what extent and under what conditions is the scientific approach to decision-making associated with superior performance?

2021
Janes, L., Koelle, M., Quinn, S.

Do capital grants improve microenterprise productivity? We use the lens of a production function to re-examine two previous randomised controlled trials that allocated capital to microenterprises. We find that productivity is higher for treated firms, and accounts for about 20-30 percent of the revenue effects of capital grants. Although long-run estimates are noisy, point estimates indicate that these productivity effects are sustained six years after the grants.

2021
Alan, S., Corekcioglu, G., Sutter, M.

This project evaluated the impact of a program aiming to improve the workplace climate in corporations.

2021
Camuffo, A., Gambardella, A., Messinese, D., Novelli, E., Paolucci, E., Spina, C.

The model shows that managers and entrepreneurs make better decisions under uncertainty if they adopt a scientific approach in which they formulate and test theories.

2021
Chioda, L., Contreras-Loya, D., Gertler, P., Carney, D.

This paper studies the medium-term impacts of the Skills for Effective Entrepreneurship Development (SEED) program, an innovative in-residence 3-week mini-MBA program for high school students modeled after western business school curricula and adapted to the Ugandan context.

2021
Chaurey, R., Gu, Y., Nayyar, G., Sharma, S., Verhoogen, E.

This project aims to understand the determinants of adoption of a new technology by firms in Bangladesh's leather goods and footwear industry.

2021
Blimpo, M. P., Pugatch, T.

This study assesses, via a field experiment, how a comprehensive teacher training program affects the delivery of a major entrepreneurship curriculum reform in Rwanda. The reform introduced interactive pedagogy and a focus on business skills in the country’s required upper secondary entrepreneurship course. Both groups received the government’s standard training. In addition, the treatment group was assigned intensive training organized by an NGO for two years.

2021
Moberg, S. K.

A randomised controlled trial has been performed in which 580 randomly selected pupils (aged 14-15) have been randomly assigned to participate in online programmes that focus either on entrepreneurship or on environmental issues. . The short-term results show that the programme focusing on entrepreneurship had a significantly positive influence on the participants’ entrepreneurial intentions, venture creation self-efficacy, entrepreneurial attitudes and perceived knowledge about entrepreneurship

2021
Anderson-Macdonald, S., Kankanhalli, S., Iacovone, L., Narayanan, S.

This paper studies the impact of business modernization on the sales performance of traditional retailers. We define modernization as adopting tangible structures and business practices of organized retail chains (for example, exterior signage with store name and logo, or a database to record product-level information). To address our research question, we implement a randomized field experiment in Mexico City with 1148 traditional retail firms.

2021
Bryan, G., Karlan, D., Osman A.

We experimentally study the impact of substantially larger enterprise loans, in collaboration with an Egyptian lender. Larger loans generate small average impacts, but machine learning using psychometric data reveals dramatic heterogeneity. Top-performers (i.e., those with the highest predicted treatment effects) substantially increase profits, whereas profits for poor-performers drop. The magnitude of this difference implies that an individual lender’s credit allocation choices matter for aggregate income.

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.

2021
Barsoum, G., Crépon, B., Gardiner, D., Michel, B., Parienté, W.

This trial measures the impact of an edutainment program specifically designed to promote entrepreneurship among young adult viewers in Egypt.

2021
McKenzie, D., Mohpal, A., Yang D.

This randomised experiment tested the impact of exogenously inducing higher financial aspirations among poor entrepreneurs.

2020
Alaref, J., Brodmanna, S., Premanda, P.

Despite the widespread popularity of entrepreneurship education, there is thin evidence on its effectiveness in improving employment outcomes over the medium to long-term. A potential time lag between entrepreneurial intentions and actions is sometimes presented as a reason why employment impacts are rarely observed. Based on a randomized control trial among university students in Tunisia, this paper studies the medium-term impacts of entrepreneurship education four years after students’ graduation.

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