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Intergroup contact and prejudice: Evidence from Indian slums
Last registered on October 20, 2020


Trial Information
General Information
Intergroup contact and prejudice: Evidence from Indian slums
Initial registration date
October 18, 2020
Last updated
October 20, 2020 3:36 PM EDT
Primary Investigator
Department of Economic Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
Department of Economic Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur
PI Affiliation
Monash University
Additional Trial Information
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
In this project, we study social contact through group activity as a possible channel to reduce discriminatory attitudes among people from different religion and caste groups. Using random group assignment, we allocate people from different social groups into different teams of about 5 women each where they perform several group activities and participate in the training. The experiment has been conducted in 30 slums in Kanpur with 155 groups of women, where an introductory level beautician course was delivered full-time to groups of five women over five days. Each day the training commenced at 8am and finished at 5pm with a one-hour break. Baseline and end line surveys (both post-training and a follow up six months after the training concluded) which captured perceptions about the other religion and castes reveal changes in attitude towards the hostile group as they interact and intermingle with each other during the training.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Pakrashi, Debayan, Sarani Saha and Russell Smyth. 2020. "Intergroup contact and prejudice: Evidence from Indian slums." AEA RCT Registry. October 20. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.6608-1.0.
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Experimental Details
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Attitude towards the outgroup (during both post-training and a follow-up survey six months after the training) and willingness to participate in the labour force and similar training programmes in the future.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Learning outcomes based on MCQ test and a practical exam.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
In total, 775 women aged 15-50 from 30 different slums were invited to participate in the vocational training program. We offered to train them for a beautician course extended over a week (8 hour full time training for 5 days). We randomly assign women to groups of 5 women. Randomization is done at three levels: i) we randomly select 30 slums from all the slums in the city; ii) from each slum we randomly select women aged 15-50 to train for the course from a list of women and iii) finally, we randomly assign to groups of 5 from all selected women from each slum. We randomly assigned women to groups irrespective of caste, religion or other socio-economic characteristics, whom we deliver the training over a week. The group members help each other learn, share knowledge and understand the modules during the course of the training and also engage in several group activities. At the end of the training program, we conducted a practical exam and a multiple-choice question test to examine the learning outcomes.

We invited 775 women for the training but only 764 attended on the first day. We therefore had a total of 144 groups with five women each and 11 groups of four women each (due to the 11 women who did not turn up for the training despite being invited).
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization was done in office on a computer using STATA.
Randomization Unit
As discussed earlier, randomization was done at three levels.
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
155 groups were formed from 764 women selected from 30 slums.
Sample size: planned number of observations
764 women aged 15-50.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
We had a total of 144 groups with five women each with 11 groups of four women each (due to the 11 women who did not turn up for the training despite being invited). So, about 25 women were selected from about 30 slums.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB Name
Institutional Ethics Committee, IIT Kanpur
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
IEC Communication No: IITK/IEC/20I6-17/14.
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Is the intervention completed?
Intervention Completion Date
October 31, 2016, 12:00 AM +00:00
Is data collection complete?
Data Collection Completion Date
April 30, 2017, 12:00 AM +00:00
Final Sample Size: Number of Clusters (Unit of Randomization)
The final sample consisted of 764 women aged between 15 and 50 years from 30 slums spread across Kanpur Nagar.
Was attrition correlated with treatment status?
Final Sample Size: Total Number of Observations
764 women from 30 slums
Final Sample Size (or Number of Clusters) by Treatment Arms
On an average about 25 women from each slum
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
Program Files
Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)
We study the potential for pleasant and cooperative contact to reduce preconceived prejudice between religious groups in the context of India. We randomly assign Hindus and Muslims into groups, in which they interact over the course of a week-long vocational training program. We find that intergroup contact reduces the prejudice of both Hindu and Muslim participants toward members of the other religion one week after the training program finished. While we find that most of the positive effect of intergroup contact on reducing prejudice dissipates after six months, the baseline results for Hindu attitudes toward Muslims are persistent.
Maiti, Surya Nath & Pakrashi, Debayan & Saha, Sarani & Smyth, Russell, 2020. "Don’t judge a book by its cover: The role of intergroup contact in reducing prejudice in conflict settings," GLO Discussion Paper Series 549, Global Labor Organization (GLO).