Returns to soft skills training for youth

Last registered on August 18, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Returns to soft skills training for youth
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0005548
Initial registration date
March 11, 2020
Last updated
August 18, 2021, 3:05 AM EDT

Locations

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
World Bank

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
BRAC International
PI Affiliation
World Bank
PI Affiliation
BRAC International

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2021-05-01
End date
2022-08-31
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Abstract
There is growing recognition of the importance of soft skills in improving young people’s labor market outcomes. However, rigorous measurement of specific soft skills in the context of a large-scale field study is often challenging, and hence there is little evidence on the levels of some such skills among vulnerable youth populations, as well as potential gender gaps in such skills. Moreover, there is little causal evidence as to which skills or sets of skills are most malleable in late adolescence and early adulthood, and which may have the highest labor-market returns for such populations. This study will deploy novel measures of key soft skills with a sample of young male and female adults in urban and peri-urban Tanzania. Building on recent advances in psychology and behavioral economics, as well as BRAC’s Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescents (ELA) curriculum, we will create training modules focusing on two different sets of soft skills. We will use an individual-level randomized controlled trial to estimate the causal impacts of these trainings on young men and women's skills and on their labor market outcomes.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Cassidy, Rachel et al. 2021. "Returns to soft skills training for youth ." AEA RCT Registry. August 18. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.5548-1.1
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2021-09-01
Intervention End Date
2022-08-31

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Socio-emotional skills, employment, earnings
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
This study will consist of an individual-level randomized controlled trial among 4800 youth from 40 communities spread over three regions of Tanzania: Dodoma, Dar es Salam and Iringa. Our community sampling frame will consist of clusters which have: at least 120 eligible young men and 120 eligible young women within a one-mile radius; community leaders who confirm interest in the program; and an existing venue suitable for hosting a training. We will randomly select 40 communities from the list of communities meeting these criteria. Within selected communities, we will conduct a listing to create an individual sampling frame of all eligible young men and women, defined as being: primarily aged 18-24, with possible inclusion of 16-17-year-olds and 25-26-year-olds if needed to attain the desired sample size; not in full time education or attending boarding school, and not in full time formal salaried employment. From this sampling frame, we will use a computer to draw a random sample of 60 adolescent girls and 60 adolescent boys per community, and to randomly allocate them to one of three treatment arms – receiving training on the first set of skills, receiving training on the second set of skills, receiving training on both sets of skills – or the control arm (no training).
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomisation done in office by a computer
Randomization Unit
Individual
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
4800 individuals (2400 young women, 2400 young men)
Sample size: planned number of observations
4800 individuals (2400 young women, 2400 young men)
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
1200 individuals control (of which 600 male, 600 female); 1200 individuals T1 (of which 600 male, 600 female); 1200 individuals T2 (of which 600 male, 600 female); 1200 individuals T1+T2 (of which 600 male, 600 female)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Tanzania Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH)
IRB Approval Date
2019-07-01
IRB Approval Number
2019-381-NA-2019-270