Boosting Youth Entrepreneurship with Grants, Human Capital Support, and Behavioral Insights: Experimental Evidence from a Country-Wide Program in Kenya

Last registered on July 02, 2020


Trial Information

General Information

Boosting Youth Entrepreneurship with Grants, Human Capital Support, and Behavioral Insights: Experimental Evidence from a Country-Wide Program in Kenya
Initial registration date
June 30, 2020

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
July 02, 2020, 1:46 PM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.



Primary Investigator

The World Bank

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
World Bank
PI Affiliation
World Bank
PI Affiliation
University of Exeter

Additional Trial Information

On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
This study aims to examine constraints to entrepreneurship and different means to alleviate these constraints for female and male youth in Kenya. The large-scale randomized control trial studies the combined and isolated impacts of providing business grants, business development services (BDS) of different forms (classroom, one-on-one counselling, and digital), behavioral interventions (future-self goal setting), and peer support through moderated whatsapp groups. The study further tests the effectiveness of an Entrepreneurship Aptitude Test that scores applicants on their entrepreneurial ability prior to program launch.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Domenella, Yanina et al. 2020. "Boosting Youth Entrepreneurship with Grants, Human Capital Support, and Behavioral Insights: Experimental Evidence from a Country-Wide Program in Kenya." AEA RCT Registry. July 02.
Experimental Details


The study aims to identify different constraints to entrepreneurship – capital, knowledge, mindset, and/or behavioral – and whether active labor market programs and nudges can alleviate these constraints.

To examine these questions, this study focuses on the impact evaluation of support for self-employment, including testing of gender-integrated interventions. The interventions include: (a) business grants; (b) business development services (BDS) (classroom, individual counseling, and digital); (c) digital peer networks for youth to share challenges and solutions; and (d) future-self exercises with goal setting.

The study also includes an Entrepreneurship Aptitude Test (EAT) that will be administered to all participants at program intake. The EAT is by itself an important contribution of this study, and will allow us to assess whether such a test can serve as a useful screening tool for entrepreneurial ability, aptitude, and success.

Please see attached study chart for full description of treatments and their interactions
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Outcomes can be broadly categorized as take up, intermediary channels (including business practices, socio-emotional skills), and business performance. We are also interested in studying heterogeneity of impact based on gender, EAT scores, prior entrepreneurial status/experience, and location.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
The study design is multi-layered. The first layer consists of a 8-arm randomized controlled trial (RCT) with 9,380 entrepreneurs, randomized at the individual level (stratified by gender, prior participation in training, and location):
ARM 1: A business start-up Grant
ARM 2: Classroom + Individual Counselling + Digital BDS (i.e. Full BDS)
ARM 3: Individual Counselling + Digital BDS
ARM 4: Digital BDS
ARM 5: Grant + Full BDS
ARM 6: Grant + Individual Counselling + Digital BDS
ARM 7: Grant + Digital BDS
ARM 8: Control Group

In the second layer, participants in ARMs 1, 2, and 5 will be further randomly assigned into two orthogonal Sub-Arms:
Sub-Arm 1: Peer-Networking through moderated Whatsapp groups
Sub-Arm 2: Future Self Exercise through age-progressed rendering and goal setting
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer
Randomization Unit
Individual entrepreneur
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
Sample size: planned number of observations
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Please see attached impact evaluation chart for exact sample sizes within treatment arms
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
Supporting Documents and Materials


Document Name
Impact Evaluation Design and Sample Sizes
Document Type
Document Description
This chart outlines the various treatment arms of this study
Impact Evaluation Design and Sample Sizes

MD5: e992256631deed8f3f5b8af81ddee750

SHA1: 555251aeeac0b61048fe4fdffc7b4e3651ab6ca1

Uploaded At: June 29, 2020


Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Maseno University Ethics Review Committee
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