Education - Working Papers

Personnel Management and School Productivity

Renata Lemos, Karthik Mularidharan, Daniela Scur, 2021
NBER Working Paper 28336

  • This paper uses new data to study school management and productivity in India. We report four main results. First, management quality in public schools is low, and ~2σ below high-income countries with comparable data. Second, private schools have higher management quality, driven by much stronger people management. Third, people management quality is correlated with both independent measures of teaching practice, as well as school productivity measured by student value added. Fourth, private school teacher pay is positively correlated with teacher effectiveness, and better-managed private schools are more likely to retain more effective teachers. Neither pattern is seen in public schools.

Developing management: an expanded evaluation tool for developing countries

Daniela Scur, Renata Lemos, 2017
RISE Working Paper 16/007

  • In recent years new striking evidence has emerged showing a large tail of badly managed schools and hospitals in developing countries across a number of management areas such as operations management, performance monitoring, target setting and people management. But where exactly along the process of setting their management structures are these organizations failing? This paper describes the development of a survey tool based on an existing instrument to measure management quality – the World Management Survey (WMS) – but tailored to research in the public sector of developing countries: the Development WMS. We collected detailed data from pilots in India, Mexico, and Colombia using face-to-face interviews in settings where weak management practices prevail and observe more variation in the left tail of the distribution. Using this data, we present a brief discussion of the type of data that can be collected and explored with the expanded tool, including the three activities used to systematically measure the strength of each management area in the WMS: (1) implementation, (2) usage, (3) monitoring.