Attrition in Randomized Control Trials: Using tracking information to correct bias
Karen Macours and
Teresa Molina Millan ()
No 11962, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers
This paper starts from a review of RCT studies in development economics, and documents many studies largely ignore attrition once attrition rates are found balanced between treatment arms. The paper analyzes the implications of attrition for the internal and external validity of the results of a randomized experiment with balanced attrition rates, and proposes a new method to correct for attrition bias. We rely on a 10-years longitudinal data set with a final attrition rate of 10 percent, obtained after intensive tracking of migrants, and document the sensitivity of ITT estimates for schooling gains and labour market outcomes for a social program in Nicaragua. We find that not including those found during the intensive tracking leads to an overestimate of the ITT effects for the target population by more than 35 percent, and that selection into attrition is driven by observable baseline characteristics. We propose to correct for attrition using inverse probability weighting with estimates of weights that exploit the similarities between missing individuals and those found during an intensive tracking phase. We compare these estimates with alternative strategies using regression adjustment, standard weights, bounds or proxy information.
Keywords: attrition; long-term evaluation; randomized control trials (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C31 C81 C93 O12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dev, nep-ecm, nep-exp and nep-lab
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (2) Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Working Paper: Attrition in Randomized Control Trials: Using Tracking Information to Correct Bias (2017)
Working Paper: Attrition in randomized control trials: Using tracking information to correct bias (2017)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:11962
Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.cepr.org/ ... rs/dp.php?dpno=11962
Access Statistics for this paper
More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().