Working Papers

State Rights over Water and Agricultural Productivity: Evidence from the Krishna Basin  [Full Text (Revise and Resubmit, Economic Development and Cultural Change)

The Impact of Temporary Work Guarantee Programs on Children's Education: Evidence from the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act from India (with Abhilasha Singh) [Full Text] (Under Review)

                   Women’s Reservation and India’s National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (with Nayana Bose) [Full Text]
This paper examines the impact of political reservations for women on a large public works program in India. Since 1993, one third of the Panchayats in India have been randomly restricted to fielding only woman candidates. We use detailed information on employment and public works expenditure at the Panchayat level under the Indian National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) from 2010 to 2013 for  Uttar Pradesh and combine this with information on local level electoral information. Exploiting the randomized assignment of female candidate reservations, we find that demand for work and women's labor force participation significantly increase in Panchayats with women leaders. However, we find no significant effects on the type of work that is undertaken in these areas. Thus, although we find some evidence of a role-model effect, we find no evidence of better public works distribution under female leaders.

                   Women's Inheritance Rights, Household Allocation and Gender Bias(with Nayana Bose)

This paper examines the effects of empowering women with increased rights to property on human capital accumulation and intra-household allocation towards girls. The Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act of 2005 extended ancestral property rights to unmarried daughters, however, five southern states in India had already passed the same amendment by 1994. Employing a difference-in-difference strategy, we find that the policy significantly increased women's education, on average, by 0.72 years of schooling. The effect, however, is concentrated among the younger cohorts rather than the older cohorts. We further find that daughters of mothers who were less than 10 years of age at the time of the reform, significantly gain 0.44 years of education. Examining various consumption categories, we find no significant effect on household expenditure patterns as a result of the reforms.

           Works in Progress
                   Impact of NREGA on agriculture and farmer suicide

                   Improving access to water through water allocation and NREGA works

         Permanent Working Paper
        What is the Return to Attending a Non-Elite Private College? (with Scott Imberman) [Full Text]