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Examining Barriers to Access of Social Pensions in India

Last registered on June 22, 2015


Trial Information

General Information

Examining Barriers to Access of Social Pensions in India
Initial registration date
June 22, 2015

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
June 22, 2015, 12:47 PM EDT

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



Primary Investigator

Harvard University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

Additional Trial Information

In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Ensuring the well-being of particularly vulnerable groups in society remains an important priority and challenge for all governments, especially in developing countries. Oftentimes, even when welfare schemes are available, they are not taken up by those who could benefit from them most. In India, widows and abandoned women living in poverty are a particularly disadvantaged group. While there are national and state-level non-contributory pension schemes to assist these women, evidence suggests that the majority of eligible women do not obtain their pension entitlements. This Delhi-based research project aims to understand barriers citizens face in selecting into this entitlement program by testing the effectiveness of providing information and/or various forms of assistance with the application process.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Gupta, Sarika. 2015. "Examining Barriers to Access of Social Pensions in India." AEA RCT Registry. June 22.
Former Citation
Gupta, Sarika. 2015. "Examining Barriers to Access of Social Pensions in India." AEA RCT Registry. June 22.
Experimental Details


Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Our key outcomes of interest are whether or not the individual applies for enrollment into the pension scheme and whether or not her application is successful. We will look for heterogeneous affects along baseline characteristics, such as literacy, family size, empowerment, and employment. In addition, our end-line survey will capture how our subjects were treated by government officers while applying, whether the system was easy or difficult to navigate, and any issues of corruption or discrimination that arise. This will help us understand the entire process of selection into such welfare programs more clearly.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Women who are eligible for the pension scheme and are currently not enrolled will be identified via a baseline survey in several slum areas throughout Delhi. These women will then be randomly assigned to treatment and control groups.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization will be done on the computer (in Stata).
Randomization Unit
Randomization will occur at the individual level.
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
Approximately 2000 women
Sample size: planned number of observations
Approximately 2000 women
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Approximately 400 women in control and 400 in each of 4 treatment groups.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Harvard University-Area Committee on the Use of Human Subjects
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number


Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Is the intervention completed?
Intervention Completion Date
November 30, 2015, 12:00 +00:00
Data Collection Complete
Data Collection Completion Date
July 31, 2017, 12:00 +00:00
Final Sample Size: Number of Clusters (Unit of Randomization)
Was attrition correlated with treatment status?
Final Sample Size: Total Number of Observations
Final Sample Size (or Number of Clusters) by Treatment Arms
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials