Firms and Innovation Initiative

The Firms and Innovation Initiative is motivated by the view that one of the best anti-poverty programs is a steady job at a wage sufficient to support the basic needs of a household. Such jobs are more likely to be available when an economy’s industrial sector is thriving, when firms are growing and investing in their workforces. Innovation – understood broadly to mean all types of learning: how to produce new products, how to reduce costs, how to upgrade quality, how to manage an organization – is a key driver of industrial development. Why are some firms able to innovate and some not? Why are some industries and regions populated by dynamic, innovative firms and some not?  What role can public policy play in overcoming market failures and stimulating innovation and industrial development? These are core questions for the initiative.

The Firms and Innovation Initiative is led by CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen.

Current Projects

Barriers to Social Learning Among Smallholder Farms
Investigators: CDEP Affiliate Jack Willis and Raissa Fabregas

Land Rental Markets: Experimental Evidence from Kenya
Investigators: CDEP Affiliate Jack Willis, Michelle Acampora, and Lorenzo Casaburi

Evaluating Contract Farming
Investigators: CDEP Affiliate Jack Willis and Lorenzo Casaburi

How Do Managers' Beliefs About New Technologies Evolve?
Investigators: CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen, Ritam Chaurey, Siddharth Sharma, Gaurav Nayyar, and Yunfan Gu 

Can Enforcement Interventions by Multinationals Help Improve Labor Standards in Developing Countries
Investigator: CDEP Affiliate Laura Boudreau

Promoting High Impact Entrepreneurship in Mexico: A Randomized Evaluation
Investigator: CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen

COMPLETED PROJECTS

Firm-Level Upgrading in Developing Countries
Investigator: CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen


Spillovers from Special Economic Zones: Evidence from Myanmar
Investigators: Amit Khandelwal, Rocco Machiavello, and Matthieu Teachout


Exclusionary Hiring or Assortative Matching? The Impact of Hiring and Pay Policies on Racial Wage Differences in Brazil
Investigators: François Gerard, David Card, Lorenzo Lagos, and Edson Severnini


Market Based Emissions Policies
Investigators: CDEP Affiliate Douglas Almond and Shuang Zhang


Unraveling the Market Structure Behind International Migration
Investigators: CDEP Affiliate Suresh Naidu, Shing-Yi Wang, and Yaw Nyarko


Ethnic Divisions and Production in Firms
Investigator: Jonas Hjort


Barriers to Trade: Contracting Failures in Irrigation Markets
Investigators: CDEP Affiliate Supreet Kaur and Ryan Bubb .


The Real Effects of Elecronic Wage Payments: A Field Experiment with Salaried Factory Workers in Bangladesh
Investigators: Emily Breza, Martin Kanz, and Leora Klapper


Enlisting Workers in Improving Payroll-Tax Compliance: Evidence from Mexico
Investigators: Todd Kumler, CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen, and Judith Frías  

North-South Displacement Effects of Environmental Regulation: The Case of Battery Recycling
Investigators: Shinsuke Tanaka, Kensuke Teshima, and CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen


Time vs. State in Insurance: Experimental Evidence from Contract Farming in Kenya
Investigator: CDEP Affiliate Jack Willis


Tax Systems and Inter-Firm Trade: Evidence from the VAT in Brazil
Investigators: François Gerard, Joana Naritomi, and Arthur Seibold


The Arrival of Fast Internet and Skilled Job Creation in Africa
Investigators: Jonas Hjort and Jonas Poulsen


Electricity Cost and Firm Performance: Evidence from India
Investigator: Ama Baafra Abeberese


Self Control at Work
Investigators: Supreet Kaur, Michael Kremer, and Sendhil Mullainathan


Ethiopia: More Sweatshops for Africa?
Investigators: Chris Blattman and Stefan Dercon


Exports and Wage Premia: Evidence from Mexican Employer-Employee Data
Investigators: CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen, David Kaplan, Judith Frías, and David Alfaro-Serrano 


Organizational Barriers to Technology Adoption: Evidence from Soccer-Ball Producers in Pakistan
Investigators: Amit Khandelwal, CDEP Co-Director Eric Verhoogen, David Atkin, Azam Chaudhry, and Shamyla Chaudry