Welcome to my website. I am an Assistant Professor at the Institute for International Economic Studies at Stockholm University. My research focuses on education, human capital, and development.
You can view my CV here.
Forthcoming at the Review of Economic Studies
To explore whether schools’ causal impacts on test scores measure their overall impact on students, we exploit plausibly exogenous school assignments and data from Trinidad and Tobago to estimate the causal impacts of individual schools on several outcomes. Schools’ impacts on high-stakes tests are weakly related to impacts on important outcomes such as arrests, dropout, teen motherhood, and formal labour market participation. To examine if parents’ school preferences are related to these causal impacts, we link them to parents’ ranked lists of schools and employ discrete-choice models to infer preferences for schools. Parents choose schools that improve high-stakes tests even conditional on peer quality and average outcomes. Parents also choose schools that reduce criminality and teen motherhood and increase labour market participation. School choices among parents of low-achieving students are relatively more strongly related to schools’ impacts on non-test-score outcomes, while the opposite is true for parents of high-achieving students. These results suggest that evaluations based solely on test scores may be misleading about the benefits of school choice (particularly for low-achieving students), and education interventions more broadly.
Secondary Schools with Televised Lessons: The Labor Market Returns of the Mexican Telesecundaria (Job Market Paper)
Draft being revised
Updated: December 2021, HCEO working paper 2021-053
In areas with an insufficient supply of qualified teachers, delivering instruction through technology may be a solution to provide education. This paper analyzes the educational and labor market impacts of an expansion of junior secondary education in Mexico through schools using televised lessons, the telesecundarias. Exploiting their staggered rollout from 1968 to 2000, I show that for every additional telesecundaria per 50 children, ten students enroll in junior secondary education. I find that an additional year of education increases long-run income by 12.5–13.9%, driven partly by increased labor force participation and a shift away from agriculture and the informal sector.
We conduct a randomized controlled trial with households of secondary school students in Bangladesh to investigate how parents adjust their investments in response to three educational interventions: an informational campaign about an educational phone application, an internet data subsidy, and one-on-one phone learning support. We find that offering an educational service in a context where other barriers to take-up exist can still trigger parental educational investments by acting as a signal or nudge. These behavioral changes result in lasting learning gains concentrated among richer households, reflecting that the relevant behavior change--increased tutoring investment--is easier for them to implement. In contrast, when interventions do increase take-up, they have the potential to narrow the socioeconomic achievement gap. We observe that increased usage of the targeted educational service limits parental behavioral responses. This implies that learning gains in these cases are directly caused by the potential effectiveness of the services adopted. In our setting, remote one-to-one teacher support improves learning among students from poorer households, whereas receiving the free data package jointly with the app information has no impact on learning.
SELECTED WORK IN PROGRESS
Behavioral-based Socioemotional Skills Development for At-Risk Youth in Spain
Funding secured. Baseline data collection in preparation.