Chris Blattman

IPA’s weekly links

Guest post by Jeff Mosenkis of Innovations for Poverty Action

  • IPA’s Peace and Recovery initiative, led on the academic side by Chris, has an open call for funding. We define peace and recovery pretty broadly:
    • Reducing violence and promoting peace
    • Reducing “fragility” (i.e. fostering state capability and institutions of decision-making)
    • Preventing, coping with, and recovering from crises (focusing on conflict, but also including non-conflict humanitarian crises),
  • It also funds a variety of types of work, including pilots and exploratory work, specifically earmarked for junior researchers (PhD student through untenured professors). See page 1 of this doc explaining the purpose of the fund. More details here, examples of currently funded studies here. Deadline for expressions of interest is March 15th.
  • And if you’re in Chicago, on Monday see Dr. Rebecca Wolfe from Mercy Corps talk at UChicago about one funded project, from Nigeria, on whether playing communities audio recordings of former Boko Haram members apologizing for what they’ve done, can help with reintegration.
  • The New York Times Magazine‘s recent issue on work was just great all around – Emily Bazelon interviewed Katherine Phillips of Columbia and Shelley Correll of Stanford about women’s barriers to advancement in the workplace, and Princeton Sociologist Matthew Desmond wrote brilliantly about the public health benefits of a higher wage. (The articles about why successful Harvard MBAs can be unhappy when they get the jobs they thought they wanted, and on a workplace designed for people with autism were interesting reads also.)
  • The World Bank’s Pandemic Emergency Financing Facility (PEF) has paid out its second payment, $20 million, for Ebola response in the DRC. As I understand this is a relatively recent funding mechanism (from 2017), developed after the slow response to the 2014 Ebola outbreak. Instead of waiting for a disease to spread, then gathering funders together to cobble together funding commitments, this is funded more like insurance. The money is funded in advance by a bond, and then pays out immediately when particular criteria are met.
  • A nice podcast conversation between Diane Rehm and journalist Francisco Toro explaining the situation, history, and politics of the crisis in Venezuela.
  • Jonathan Morduch explains positive early results from Grameen America’s RCT on a microcredit program in New Jersey (summary: the 6-month results look promising on satisfaction, some financial indicators, and business creation but it’s early). Full report link here or in his last tweet.

Happy International Women’s Day:

  • Here’s Justin’s one tweet summary of Eble and Hu’s research on gender attitudes and bias in Chinese schools:
  • I just learned about Lise Meitner, the Jewish refugee who overcame many barriers to women in academia, barely escaped Germany in WWII, and went on to co-discover nuclear fission. Her colleague published the paper without her name, and was awarded the Nobel Prize alone. Read about her fascinating life from Brain Pickings.
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