Photo by Giacomo Mason

Evaluation of the Child Development Grant Programme

Photo by Giacomo Mason

Evaluation of the Child Development Grant Programme

There’s many reasons why children born to poor households might fail to thrive. One (obvious) one is poverty: lack of resources means there might just not be enough food to eat. But this is not the whole story. Inadequate nutrition practices when children are very young can be detrimental to their development.

The Child Development Grant Programme (CDGP) tackles both of these issues. Taking place in Northern Nigeria, the CDGP:

  • provides pregnant women with a large monthly cash grant until their child turns two

  • organises media campaigns and counselling for new mothers around how to feed and breastfeed their child

CDGP is funded by the Department for International Development and implemented by Save the Children and Action Against Hunger. It is evaluated by a consortium led by Oxford Policy Management, and comprising Itad and the Institute for Fiscal Studies, where I work.

During the course of this project, I’ve had the luck to:

  • learn how a large panel household survey

    • is designed – from sampling respondents to deciding the best way to elicit truthful and useful answers based on your research question
    • and is managed – by tracking households across time (and space!), and accounting for every one of them
  • be confronted with a huge amount of data, refining my cleaning and wrangling skills

  • apply econometric and statistical tools to evaluate a large-scale social experiment, appreciating the nuance needed to translate data to insights

  • discover and visit a fascinating country like Nigeria with its compelling history, amazing people, and exciting perspective 🇳🇬

Giacomo Mason
Data Scientist