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Can Transparency and Accountability Programs Improve Health? Experimental Evidence from Indonesia and Tanzania

Jean Arkedis, Jessica Creighton, Akshay Dixit, Archon Fung, Stephen Kosack, Dan Levy, and Courtney Tolmie

Publisher: Center for International Development at Harvard University

May 2019

In this paper, the authors assess the impact of a transparency and accountability program designed to improve maternal and newborn health (MNH) outcomes in Indonesia and Tanzania. Co-designed with local partner organizations to be community-led and non-prescriptive, the program sought to encourage community participation to address local barriers in access to high quality care for pregnant women and infants.

The randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluation found that on average, this program did not have a statistically significant impact on the use or content of maternal and newborn health services, nor the sense of civic efficacy or civic participation among recent mothers in the communities who were offered it.

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