The Impact of Financial Education for Youth in Ghana

James Berry, Dean Karlan, Menno Pradhan

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Governments and non-governmental organizations promote school-based financial literacy programs as means to instill financial behaviors that can persist through adulthood. We conduct a randomized trial of two financial literacy education programs in government-run Ghanaian primary and junior high schools. The first integrated both financial and social education, while the second included only financial education. Our study finds that after nine months, both programs had positive impacts on self-reported savings at school relative to the control group, but there were no statistically significant increases in aggregate savings nor in hypothesized mechanisms such as attitudes, preferences, or knowledge. The financial education-only treatment led to a weakly statistically significant increase in child labor relative to the control group, although the difference in impact between the two treatment groups was not statistically significant. The lack of short-term effects of these programs on financial behaviors and attitudes indicate that alternative program designs should be evaluated to understand whether and how these outcomes can be influenced among students in this age group.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-89
Number of pages19
JournalWorld Development
Volume102
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2018

Fingerprint

Ghana
education
literacy
savings
school
child labor
Group
nongovernmental organization
adulthood
age group
student
youth
programme
lack
Financial behavior
Education
Savings
Government
Financial literacy

Keywords

  • financial literacy
  • savings
  • youth finance

Cite this

Berry, James ; Karlan, Dean ; Pradhan, Menno. / The Impact of Financial Education for Youth in Ghana. In: World Development. 2018 ; Vol. 102. pp. 71-89.
@article{ea626294e1c24b9784d0f811316ff28a,
title = "The Impact of Financial Education for Youth in Ghana",
abstract = "Governments and non-governmental organizations promote school-based financial literacy programs as means to instill financial behaviors that can persist through adulthood. We conduct a randomized trial of two financial literacy education programs in government-run Ghanaian primary and junior high schools. The first integrated both financial and social education, while the second included only financial education. Our study finds that after nine months, both programs had positive impacts on self-reported savings at school relative to the control group, but there were no statistically significant increases in aggregate savings nor in hypothesized mechanisms such as attitudes, preferences, or knowledge. The financial education-only treatment led to a weakly statistically significant increase in child labor relative to the control group, although the difference in impact between the two treatment groups was not statistically significant. The lack of short-term effects of these programs on financial behaviors and attitudes indicate that alternative program designs should be evaluated to understand whether and how these outcomes can be influenced among students in this age group.",
keywords = "financial literacy, savings, youth finance",
author = "James Berry and Dean Karlan and Menno Pradhan",
year = "2018",
month = "2",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.worlddev.2017.09.011",
language = "English",
volume = "102",
pages = "71--89",
journal = "World Development",
issn = "0305-750X",
publisher = "Elsevier BV",

}

The Impact of Financial Education for Youth in Ghana. / Berry, James; Karlan, Dean; Pradhan, Menno.

In: World Development, Vol. 102, 01.02.2018, p. 71-89.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - The Impact of Financial Education for Youth in Ghana

AU - Berry, James

AU - Karlan, Dean

AU - Pradhan, Menno

PY - 2018/2/1

Y1 - 2018/2/1

N2 - Governments and non-governmental organizations promote school-based financial literacy programs as means to instill financial behaviors that can persist through adulthood. We conduct a randomized trial of two financial literacy education programs in government-run Ghanaian primary and junior high schools. The first integrated both financial and social education, while the second included only financial education. Our study finds that after nine months, both programs had positive impacts on self-reported savings at school relative to the control group, but there were no statistically significant increases in aggregate savings nor in hypothesized mechanisms such as attitudes, preferences, or knowledge. The financial education-only treatment led to a weakly statistically significant increase in child labor relative to the control group, although the difference in impact between the two treatment groups was not statistically significant. The lack of short-term effects of these programs on financial behaviors and attitudes indicate that alternative program designs should be evaluated to understand whether and how these outcomes can be influenced among students in this age group.

AB - Governments and non-governmental organizations promote school-based financial literacy programs as means to instill financial behaviors that can persist through adulthood. We conduct a randomized trial of two financial literacy education programs in government-run Ghanaian primary and junior high schools. The first integrated both financial and social education, while the second included only financial education. Our study finds that after nine months, both programs had positive impacts on self-reported savings at school relative to the control group, but there were no statistically significant increases in aggregate savings nor in hypothesized mechanisms such as attitudes, preferences, or knowledge. The financial education-only treatment led to a weakly statistically significant increase in child labor relative to the control group, although the difference in impact between the two treatment groups was not statistically significant. The lack of short-term effects of these programs on financial behaviors and attitudes indicate that alternative program designs should be evaluated to understand whether and how these outcomes can be influenced among students in this age group.

KW - financial literacy

KW - savings

KW - youth finance

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85033571823&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85033571823&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.worlddev.2017.09.011

DO - 10.1016/j.worlddev.2017.09.011

M3 - Article

VL - 102

SP - 71

EP - 89

JO - World Development

JF - World Development

SN - 0305-750X

ER -