Monday, Nov 3
Melvin Stephens, Estimating Program Benefits
Fitzenberger, B., M. Lechner, and Jeffrey A. Smith. 2013. "Estimation of treatment effects: recent developments and applications." Empirical Economics, 44(1): 1-11.
The literature on the estimation of treatment effects has matured in economics. The potential outcomes framework guides the estimation of the causal effect of economic choices or policy interventions. The application of methods from the treatment effects literature has spread from the analysis of the effects of labor market programs and the wage return to education to other areas in economics. This special issue involves methodological developments and state-of-the art applications of methods to estimate treatment effects in various areas of economics. The contributions illustrate the emphasis within the treatment effects literature on the separate but related issues of heterogeneous treatment effects and identification. The careful, high-quality substantive applications collected here show just how much applied work on policy-relevant topics has benefitted from the methodological developments in the treatment effects literature. At the same time, many of the substantive papers make important methodological contributions as well.