Premand, Patrick

Development Impact Evaluation Group, the World Bank
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Social protection, Safety nets, Employment, Skills, Early childhood development, Impact evaluation, Development economics
Development Impact Evaluation Group, the World Bank
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Last updated: January 4, 2024
Patrick Premand is a Senior Economist in the Development Impact Evaluation Group (DIME) in the research Vice-Presidency at the World Bank. He works on Social Protection and Safety Nets; Jobs, Economic Inclusion and Entrepreneurship; and Early Childhood Development. He conducts impact evaluations and policy experiments of social protection, jobs and human development programs. He often works on government-led interventions implemented at scale, in close collaboration with policymakers and researchers. He has led policy dialogue and technical assistance activities, as well as worked on the design, implementation and management of a range of World Bank operations. He previously held various positions at the World Bank, including in the Social Protection & Jobs group in Africa, the Human Development Economics Unit of the Africa region, the Office of the Chief Economist for Human Development, and the Poverty Unit of the Latin America and Caribbean region. He holds a DPhil in Economics from Oxford University.
Citations 134 Scopus

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 10 of 22
  • Publication
    Transfers, Diversification and Household Risk Strategies: Can productive safety nets help households manage climatic variability?
    (Oxford University Press, 2022-03-30) Macours, Karen; Premand, Patrick; Vakis, Renos
    Despite increasing climatic variability and frequent weather shocks in many developing countries, there is little evidence on effective policies that help poor agricultural households manage risk. This paper presents experimental evidence on a program in rural Nicaragua aimed at improving households’ risk-management through income diversification. The intervention targeted agricultural households exposed to weather shocks and combined a one-year conditional cash transfer with vocational training or a productive investment grant. We identify the relative impact of each complementary package based on randomized assignment and analyse how impacts vary by exposure to exogenous drought shocks. The results show that both complementary interventions provide protection against weather shocks two years after the programme ended. Households that received the productive investment grant also had higher average consumption levels. The complementary interventions facilitated income smoothing and diversification of economic activities, as such offering better protection from shocks compared to beneficiaries of the basic conditional cash transfer and control households. Relaxing capital constraints induced investments in non-agricultural businesses, while relaxing skills constraints increased wage work and migration in response to shocks. These results show that combining safety nets with productive interventions relaxing skill or capital constraints can help households become more resilient and manage climatic variability.
  • Publication
    Do Cash Transfers Foster Resilience? Evidence from Rural Niger
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-11) Stoeffler, Quentin; Premand, Patrick
    Policy makers are increasingly interested in strategies to promote resilience and mitigate the effects of future climatic shocks. Cash transfer programs have had widely documented positive welfare impacts. They often also aim to offer protection against shocks, but their role in fostering resilience has been less studied. This paper assesses whether the beneficiaries of a multiyear government cash transfer program in rural Niger are better able to mitigate the welfare effects of drought shocks. It analyzes mechanisms through which cash transfers contribute to resilience, such as savings facilitation, asset accumulation, or income smoothing in agriculture and off-farm activities. It combines household survey data collected as part of a randomized control trial with satellite data used to identify exogenous rainfall shocks. The results show that cash transfers increase household consumption by about 10 percent on average. Importantly, this increase is mostly concentrated among households affected by drought shocks, for whom welfare impacts are larger than transfer amounts. Cash transfers increase savings. They also help households protect earnings in agriculture and off-farm businesses when shocks occur. Few differences in household durables or livestock are observed. Overall, these findings suggest that cash transfer programs targeting poor households can foster resilience by facilitating savings and income smoothing.
  • Publication
    Efficiency, Legitimacy, and Impacts of Targeting Methods: Evidence from an Experiment in Niger
    (Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the World Bank, 2020-09-08) Premand, Patrick
    The methods to select safety net beneficiaries are the subject of frequent debates. Targeting assessments usually focus on efficiency by documenting the pre-program profile of selected beneficiaries. This study provides a more comprehensive analysis of targeting performance through an experiment embedded in a national cash transfer program in Niger. Eligible villages were randomly assigned to have beneficiary households selected by community-based targeting (CBT), proxy-means testing (PMT), or a formula to identify the food-insecure (FCS). The study considers targeting legitimacy and the impact of targeting choice on program effectiveness based on data collected after program roll-out. PMT is more efficient in identifying households with lower consumption per capita. Nonbeneficiaries find formula-based methods (PMT and FCS) more legitimate than CBT. Manipulation and information imperfections affect CBT, which can explain why it is not the most legitimate. Program impacts on some welfare dimensions are larger among households selected by PMT than CBT.
  • Publication
    Tackling psychosocial and capital constraints to alleviate poverty
    (Springer Nature, 2022-04-27) Bossuroy, Thomas; Goldstein, Markus; Karimou, Bassirou; Karlan, Dean; Kazianga, Harounan; Pariente, William; Premand, Patrick; Thomas, Catherine C.; Udry, Christopher; Vaillant, Julia; Wright, Kelsey A.
    Many policies attempt to help extremely poor households build sustainable sources of income. Although economic interventions have predominated historically 1,2, psychosocial support has attracted substantial interest 3,4,5, particularly for its potential cost-effectiveness. Recent evidence has shown that multi-faceted ‘graduation’ programs can succeed in generating sustained changes 6,7. Here we show that a multi-faceted intervention can open pathways out of extreme poverty by relaxing capital and psychosocial constraints. We conducted a four-arm randomized evaluation among extremely poor female beneficiaries already enrolled in a national cash transfer government program in Niger. The three treatment arms included group savings promotion, coaching and entrepreneurship training, and then added either a lump-sum cash grant, psychosocial interventions, or both the cash grant and psychosocial interventions. All three arms generated positive effects on economic outcomes and psychosocial well-being, but there were notable differences in the pathways and the timing of effects. Overall, the arms with psychosocial interventions were the most cost-effective, highlighting the value of including well-designed psychosocial components in government-led multi-faceted interventions for the extreme poor.
  • Publication
    Do Workfare Programs Live Up to Their Promises? Experimental Evidence from Côte d’Ivoire
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-04) Bertrand, Marianne; Crepon, Bruno; Marguerie, Alicia; Premand, Patrick
    Workfare programs are one of the most popular social protection and employment policy instruments in the developing world. They evoke the promise of efficient targeting, as well as immediate and lasting impacts on participants’ employment, earnings, skills and behaviors. This paper evaluates contemporaneous and post-program impacts of a public works intervention in Côte d’Ivoire. The program was randomized among urban youths who self-selected to participate and provided seven months of employment at the formal minimum wage. Randomized subsets of beneficiaries also received complementary training on basic entrepreneurship or job search skills. During the program, results show limited impacts on the likelihood of employment, but a shift toward wage jobs, higher earnings and savings, as well as changes in work habits and behaviors. Fifteen months after the program ended, savings stock remain higher, but there are no lasting impacts on employment or behaviors, and only limited impacts on earnings. Machine learning techniques are applied to assess whether program targeting can improve. Significant heterogeneity in impacts on earnings is found during the program but not post-program. Departing from self-targeting improves performance: a range of practical targeting mechanisms achieve impacts close to a machine learning benchmark by maximizing contemporaneous impacts without reducing post-program impacts. Impacts on earnings remain substantially below program costs even under improved targeting.
  • Publication
    Savings Facilitation or Capital Injection?: Impacts and Spillovers of Livelihood Interventions in Post-Conflict Côte d’Ivoire
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2023-09-12) Marguerie, Alicia; Premand, Patrick
    Policy makers grapple with the optimal design of multidimensional strategies to improve poor households’ livelihoods. To address financial constraints, are capital injections needed, or is savings mobilization sufficient This paper tests the direct effects and local spillovers of three instruments to relax financial constraints, each combined with micro-entrepreneurship training. “Cash grants” and “cash grants with repayment” directly inject capital, while “village savings and loan associations” (VSLAs) promote more efficient group saving. The randomized controlled trial took place in western regions of Côte d’Ivoire that were affected by a post-electoral crisis in 2011 and an earlier conflict. The interventions had differential effects on the dynamics of savings and productive asset accumulation. The cash grant modalities generated investments in startup capital, although nearly 30 percent of the grant was saved. In contrast, village savings and loan associations did not increase total savings but gradually induced investments, so that productive assets caught up with cash grant recipients after 15 months. Positive local spillovers on savings and independent activities were also observed. Yet, investments in independent activities were not sufficient to increase profits, possibly because they were limited due to high precautionary saving motives in the post-conflict study setting.
  • Publication
    The Medium-Term Impact of Entrepreneurship Education on Labor Market Outcomes: Experimental Evidence from University Graduates in Tunisia
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2019-01) Alaref, Jumana; Brodmann, Stefanie; Premand, Patrick
    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. The paper complements earlier evidence that documented small, short-term impacts on entry into self-employment and aspirations toward the future one year after graduation. The medium-term results show that the impacts of entrepreneurship education were short-lived. There are no sustained impacts on self-employment or employment outcomes four years after graduation. There are no lasting effects on latent entrepreneurship either, and the short-term increase in optimism also receded.
  • Publication
    Behavioral Change Promotion, Cash Transfers and Early Childhood Development: Experimental Evidence from a Government Program in a Low-Income Setting
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-08) Barry, Oumar; Premand, Patrick
    Signs of development delays and malnutrition are widespread among young children in low-income settings. Social protection programs such as cash transfers are increasingly combined with behavioral change promotion or parenting interventions to improve early childhood development. This paper disentangles the effects of behavioral change promotion from cash transfers to poor households through an experiment embedded in a government program in Niger. The study is also designed to identify within-community spillovers from the behavioral change intervention. The findings show that behavioral change promotion affects a range of practices related to nutrition, health, stimulation, and child protection. Local spillovers on parenting practices are also found. Moderate gains in children's socio-emotional development are observed, but there are no improvements in anthropometrics or cognitive development. Cash transfers alone do not alter parenting practices or improve early childhood development. Cash transfers improve welfare and food security at the household level, and the behavioral intervention induces intra-household reallocations toward children.
  • Publication
    Poor Households' Productive Investments of Cash Transfers: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from Niger
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-09) Stoeffler, Quentin; Mills, Bradford; Premand, Patrick
    Cash transfer programs have spread rapidly as an instrument to raise household consumption and reduce poverty. Questions remain about the sustainability of cash transfer impacts in low-income settings such as Sub-Saharan Africa and, in particular, on whether cash transfers can foster productive investments in addition to raising immediate consumption among the very poor. This paper presents evidence that a cash transfer project in rural Niger induced investments in assets and productive activities that were sustained among the very poor 18 months after project completion. Results show lasting increases in livestock assets and participation in saving groups (tontines). Cash transfers also contributed to improved agricultural productivity, but no effects in terms of diversification of other household enterprises are found. Productive asset gains are, notably, largest among the poorest of the poor, suggesting that small regular cash transfers combined with enhanced saving mechanisms can relax constraints to asset accumulation among the extreme poor.
  • Publication
    Texting Parents about Early Child Development: Behavioral Changes and Unintended Social Effects
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-12) Barrera, Oscar; Macours, Karen; Premand, Patrick; Vakis, Renos
    Parenting interventions have the potential to improve early childhood development. Text messages are considered a promising channel to deliver parenting information at large scale. This paper tests whether sending text messages about parenting practices impacts early childhood development. Households in rural Nicaragua were randomly assigned to receive messages about nutrition, health, stimulation, or the home environment. The intervention led to significant changes in self-reported parenting practices. However, it did not translate into improvements in children's cognitive development. When local opinion leaders were randomly exposed to the same text message intervention, parental investments declined and children's outcomes deteriorated. Since interactions between parents and leaders about child development also decreased, the negative effects may have resulted from a crowding-out of some local leaders.