Anja Sautmann

Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab
E19-269 MIT
400 Main Street
Cambridge, MA 02142

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Institutional Affiliation: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

NBER Working Papers and Publications

April 2020In Praise of Moderation: Suggestions for the Scope and Use of Pre-Analysis Plans for RCTs in Economics
with Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo, Amy Finkelstein, Lawrence F. Katz, Benjamin A. Olken: w26993
Pre-Analysis Plans (PAPs) for randomized evaluations are becoming increasingly common in Economics, but their definition remains unclear and their practical applications therefore vary widely. Based on our collective experiences as researchers and editors, we articulate a set of principles for the ex-ante scope and ex-post use of PAPs. We argue that the key benefits of a PAP can usually be realized by completing the registration fields in the AEA RCT Registry. Specific cases where more detail may be warranted include when subgroup analysis is expected to be particularly important, or a party to the study has a vested interest. However, a strong norm for more detailed pre-specification can be detrimental to knowledge creation when implementing field experiments in the real world. An ex-post...
November 2018The Contribution of Patients and Providers to the Overuse of Prescription Drugs
with Carolina Lopez, Simone Schaner: w25284
Overuse of medical care is often attributed to an informed expert problem, whereby doctors induce patients to purchase unnecessary treatments. Alternatively, patients may drive overuse of medications by exerting pressure on doctors to overprescribe, undermining the doctor's gatekeeping function for prescription medications. We develop a theoretical framework and designed a randomized trial to identify the importance of patients in driving overuse of antimalarials in community health clinics in Mali. Holding doctors' financial incentives constant, we vary patients' information about the availability of a discount for standard malaria treatment. We find evidence of patient-driven demand: directly informing patients about the price reduction, instead of allowing doctors to choose whether to s...
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