Ultra Poor Graduation Pilot in Ethiopia

Last registered on September 16, 2013


Trial Information

General Information

Ultra Poor Graduation Pilot in Ethiopia
Initial registration date
Not yet registered
Last updated
September 16, 2013, 10:23 AM EDT


Primary Investigator

Northwestern University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Innovations for Poverty Action

Additional Trial Information

Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
The Ultra Poor Graduation Pilot in Ethiopia is a part of the CGAP/Ford Foundation global initiative, currently being implemented in eight countries, that combines safety net programs with entrepreneurial activities to develop a graduation model for the poorest households. In 2010, we conducted a baseline survey on 1000 ultra-poor households in 10 villages in Tigray, Ethiopia. The households were identified by a community level Food Security Task Force. Public lotteries were held in each village in order to randomly select 500 households (50 per village) to receive the intervention. The treatment households received an intensive support package including: livelihood trainings, productive asset transfer, consumption support, savings plans, and healthcare. By investing in this multifaceted approach, the program strives to eliminate the need for long-term safety net services. Two follow-up surveys were conducted in July 2012 and 2013.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

, and Dean Karlan. 2013. "Ultra Poor Graduation Pilot in Ethiopia." AEA RCT Registry. September 16. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.46-1.0
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details


The Ultra Poor Graduation Pilot in Ethiopia provides 500 treatment households with a comprehensive support package. The households receive consumption support for 6 months per year, which is transferred through the government run Productive Safety Net Program. Once households’ food consumption stabilizes, they receive individual savings accounts at DECSI, a microfinance institution operating in the region, as well as business training. Later on, participants receive a livelihood asset chosen from a preselected list of options: raising small ruminants, cattle fattening, petty trade or beekeeping, to help jump start a new economic activity. Participants are monitored throughout the process – they receive home visits to help boost confidence and build expertise, and are provided with access to social and health services.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Consumption, income, extreme poverty ($1.25PPP), assets, time use, financial behavior (savings, borrowing), school attendance of children, health, food security, happiness
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
The sample for the Ultra Poor Graduation Pilot in Ethiopia consisted of 1000 households (100 per village) who were selected by the community level Food Security Task Force as the poorest households. Households within each village were randomly assigned to a treatment or control group through a public lottery process.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Public lottery- separate lottery for each village
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
1000 households
Sample size: planned number of observations
1000 households
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
500 treatment households and 500 control households
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Yale University Institutional Review Board
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
IRB Name
Innovations for Poverty Action IRB
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number


Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Is the intervention completed?
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials