A list of essential evaluation literature, and some contacts courtesy of Ben Ramalingam, Harry Jones, and Enrique Mendizabal. The list focuses on evaluation but I’ve added some that include reflections on the evaluation of the contribution of research on policy (although, be warned, their approaches do attempt to measure impact and will disappoint anyone who thinks that robust and meaningful ‘evaluations’ of the impact of research on policy are possible).
This new reading list surveys the various approaches to understanding informality and documents its causes and consequences. How and why do firms become ‘formal’? What, if anything, can or should policymakers do to encourage them? The best estimates we have suggest that over 30% of output and 70% of workers in developing countries are, to some degree, outside the scope of government regulation. This list also explores the relationship between formal and informal firms in developing countries and provides a framework for thinking about how government might persuade enterprises to formalize voluntarily. http://rru.worldbank.org/PapersLinks/Reducing-Informality/
Countries need appropriate institutions to sustain and consolidate the move to market-led growth. But which specific institutions will contribute to economic growth? What are the channels through which these institutions positively influence economic development?The empirical literature on economic growth has developed substantially over the past two decades, drawing on larger and richer databases and utilizing better econometric tools to explain how institutions relate to cross-country differences in growth performance. This reading list highlights some of this research and focuses on the concepts of New Institutional Economics, the link between pro-market institutions and growth, the effects of governance on economic development, and the relationship between democracy and growth.http://rru.worldbank.org/PapersLinks/Institutions-and-Growth/