[Excerpt] In 2010, ILAB sought proposals in three topic areas: sustainable livelihoods; strategies to support consumption smoothing; and impacts of trade preference programs on labor rights. In each case, the population of interest was workers and their families in developing countries. The competition resulted in award of four contracts:
- Mushfiq Mobarak, Yale University “Under-investment when Experimenting is Risky: Evidence from a Seasonal Migration Experiment in Bangladesh” [Responded to Topic 1: Sustainable Livelihoods; 2 papers]
- Erica Field, Rohini Pande and Y. Jeanette Park, Harvard University, “Designing Microfinance to Enable Consumption Smoothing: Evidence from India” [Responded to Topic 2: Consumption Smoothing]
- Emla Fitzsimons, Bansi Malde and Marcos Vera-Hernández, Institute for Fiscal Studies, “Do Participatory Community Interventions Improve Consumption Smoothing? Evidence from Malawi” [Responded to Topic 2: Consumption Smoothing]
- Bama Athreya, International Labor Rights Forum, “Comparative Case Analysis of the Impacts of Trade-Related Labor Provisions on Select U.S. Trade Preference Recipient Countries” [Responded to Topic 3: Impacts of Trade Preference Programs on Labor Rights]
These four contracts produced five research papers that are available from the ILAB Web site [http://www.dol.gov/ilab/programs/otla/elrcontracts.htm]. This overview paper assesses lessons from the four papers on livelihoods and consumption smoothing.