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News & Events | 6 August 2012 | Education, Health, and Philanthropic Concepts in Action

August 6, 2012


Extended Learning Time: A New York Times article this week examines the tactic of extending learning time to improve student performance, an issue we also addressed in our blog earlier this summer.

Enhancing the Efficacy of Teacher Incentives Through Loss Aversion- A Field Experiment: The Wall Street Journal’s Week in Ideas “Education: Improve it or Lose It” reports findings of a “loss aversion” experiment by Roland G. Fryer Jr., Steven D. Levitt, John List, and Sally Sadoff, in the July 2012 issue of the National Bureau of Economic Research. Some teachers were paid a lump sum at the start of the year—some or all of which they had to give back if students didn’t improve—while others were given a traditional end of year bonus. The lump sum group improved relative standing on math testing (6.9 to 9.6 percentile), while the standard bonus group had little or no effect.


For Teenage Smokers, Removing the Allure of the Pack: The Fixes column by Tina Rosenberg focuses on strategies to prevent teen smoking.

What Can Mississippi Learn From Iran?: An article that highlights the potential impact of a holistic home health model being tried in Mississippi. It is one of an increasing number of community health programs in the United States that is based on successful approaches used in the developing world. U.S.-based programs such as Health Leads and Nurse Family Partnerships also address the social determinants of health that lead both to ill health and to barriers in accessing healthcare (e.g., poor housing, deficient education, harmful behaviors, and lack of social supports). The importance of addressing these critical factors and ways to expand the health workforce into the community was also discussed in a recent article in SSIR.

Philanthropic Concepts in Action

Understanding the Value of Backbone Organizations in Collective Impact: This Stanford Social Innovation Review article shines a light on “collective impact”—also a topic at this year’s Social Impact Exchange Conference—and will be a series of blogs over the next couple of months.

Goldman to Invest in City Jail Program, Profiting if Recidivism Falls Sharply: An early experiment in Social Impact Bonds/Pay for Success in New York with the example of reducing recidivism rates.

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