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PublicationConditional Cash Transfers and Female Schooling : The Impact of the Female School Stipend Programme on Public School Enrolments in Punjab, Pakistan(2010) Chaudhury, Nazmul; Parajuli, DilipInstead of mean-tested Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programmes, some countries have implemented gender-targeted CCTs to explicitly address intra-household disparities in human capital investments. This study focuses on addressing the direct impact of a female school stipend programme in Punjab, Pakistan--Did the intervention increase female enrolment in public schools? To address this question, we draw upon data from the provincial school censuses 2003 and 2005. We estimate the net growth in female enrolments in grade 6-8 in stipend eligible schools. Impact evaluation analysis, including difference-and-difference (DD), triple differencing (DDD) and regression-discontinuity design (RDD), indicate a modest but statistically significant impact of the intervention. The preferred estimator derived from a combination of DDD and RDD empirical strategies suggests that the average programme impact between 2003 and 2005 was an increase of six female students per school in terms of absolute change and an increase of 9% in female enrolment in terms of relative change. A triangulation effort is also undertaken using two rounds of a nationally representative household survey before and after the intervention. Even though the surveys are not representative at the sub-provincial level, the results corroborate evidence of the impact using school census data. PublicationReligious Schools, Social Values, and Economic Attitudes: Evidence from Bangladesh(2010) Asadullah, Mohammad Niaz; Chaudhury, NazmulThis paper uses new data on female graduates of registered secondary secular schools and madrasas from rural Bangladesh and tests whether there exist attitudinal gaps by school type and what teacher-specific factors explain these gaps. Even after controlling for a rich set of individual, family, and school traits, we find that madrasa graduates differ on attitudes associated with issues such as working mothers, desired fertility, and higher education for girls, when compared to their secular schooled peers. On the other hand, madrasa education is associated with attitudes that are still conducive to democracy. We also find that exposure to female and younger teacher is associated with more favorable attitudes among graduates. PublicationReverse Gender Gap in Schooling in Bangladesh: Insights from Urban and Rural Households(2009) Asadullah, Mohammad Niaz; Chaudhury, NazmulThis paper documents a reverse gender gap in secondary schooling outcomes in Bangladesh drawing upon several rounds of nationally representative household survey data. In terms of enrolment status and years of schooling completed, boys are found to lag behind girls in the rural as well as in the urban area. Within the urban sample, the gender gap is widest in the non-metropolitan area. These findings are robust to extensive control for demand and supply-side determinants of schooling and remain unchanged even when we use a within household estimator. We consider one hypothesis, namely gender-differentiated response to a conditional cash transfer program to reconcile the findings of this reverse gender gap. PublicationHoly Alliances : Public Subsidies, Islamic High Schools, and Female Schooling in Bangladesh(2009) Asadullah, Mohammad Niaz; Chaudhury, NazmulThis paper documents the experience of incentive-based reforms in the secondary Islamic/madrasa education sector in Bangladesh within the context of the broader debate over modernization of religious school systems in South Asia. Key features of the reform are changes of the curriculum and policy regarding admission of female students. In return to formal registration and curriculum modernization, madrasas receive financial aid from the government towards teacher salary. Using a cross-sectional census data-set (containing current and retrospective information) on formal secondary schools and madrasas, we first point out that a significant fraction of the existing post-primary registered madrasas today comprises of 'converts'; that is, formerly all-male, unregistered religious schools that previously offered traditional, religious education. Furthermore, these madrasas have embraced female students in recent years following the introduction of yet another incentive scheme, namely a conditional cash transfer scheme for secondary girls. Drawing upon school enrolment data aggregated at the region level, we show that regions that had more (modernized) madrasas were more likely to achieve gender parity in secondary enrolment during 1999-2003, holding the number of secular secondary schools constant. This finding highlights the previously undocumented role played by religious schools in removing gender disparity in rural Bangladesh.