Hello, my organisation is looking for case studies of ineffective interventions (similar to PlayPumps). I have found tracking down these case studies a little tricky so far but I am sure that there are many similar programs that I am yet to stumble across. This is for an intro to EA text that we are writing for a Christian audience.
Do you have any suggestions that are ideally
- Implemented by charities
- Working in global health/poverty alleviation
- Ended up being harmful (or at least negligible impact) Bonus points for
- Well known/easily googleable
- Clearly well-intentioned and programme implemented successfully (lack of impact was not due to corruption or similar)
Examples so far that we have thought about
- Microcredit (not harmful, just less impact than expected by the global health community, but still a pretty good example)
- Tom's shoes (this is the most similar to what we are looking for, thanks to Jack Lewars for suggesting this)
- Guide dogs vs cataract surgery (not really a failure of a programme just a difference in priorities)
- Scared straight (not in global health/poverty alleviation)
If there is already a post like that please do link it below, I did have a quick look and expect that a list like that has been written somewhere already.
Thanks for your help!
I remember a program specifically for young women (possibly in Bangladesh, possibly linked from slatestarcodex) that specifically listed "ambition" as one of the things it wanted to foster. But participants went in wanting to be doctors and left wanting to be administrative assistants. They did not show improvement on any measured axis. Can't seem to find the link