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Carolina Kansikas

Research interests
    • Development

    • Behavioural

    • Political economy

    Working papers

    Customized cash transfers: financial lives and cash-flow preferences in rural Kenya (with Anandi Mani and Paul Niehaus) - NBER working paperLink opens in a new window

    We examine the preferences of low-income households in Kenya over the structure of unconditional cash transfers. We find, first, that most prefer lumpier transfers, and many prefer delayed receipt - unlike the structures typical of safety-net programs, but consistent with evidence on the financial challenges of poverty. Second, poverty itself affects preferences: a little more financial slack when deciding increases desired delay. Finally, financial slack pays back: some delay - aligning transfers better with the seasonal cycle - increases deliberation, income, and goal progress 1.5 years later. Adapting cash transfer design to recipients’ decision-making environment could improve their financial choices and outcomes.