Date of Graduation

Spring 5-23-2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in International and Development Economics (MSIDEC)


College of Arts and Sciences



First Advisor

Bruce Wydick


Abstract: This study uses randomized field experiments conducted in Indonesia, Colombia and Ethiopia to evaluate the efficacy of the combination of goal-setting, self-help groups, and incentives as a poverty alleviation strategy. The experiment in each country had subjects randomly assigned to one of the five groups: 1) goal setting “goal”, 2) goal setting and group “group”, 3) goal setting and incentives “incentives”, 4) goal setting, group and incentives “FII” and 5) control group. Results show that the “goal” treatment has a positive and significant effect on income in Indonesia, the “incentives” treatment resulted in a positive and significant effect on income improvement in Ethiopia and Indonesia, the “FII” treatment is the only treatment that achieves economic outcome improvement in all the countries considered for this study. On the other hand, I detect no significant impact of the “group” treatment on the economic outcome variable in Ethiopia, Indonesia and Colombia. The overall analysis of the study revealed strong evidence in the findings to suggest that the FII treatment could be a powerful tool for poverty alleviation in the developing countries.