King Center on Global Development
Associate Professor of Political Economy
Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB)
Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research
Katherine Casey is an associate professor of political economy at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Her research explores the interactions between economic and political forces in developing countries, with particular interest in the role of information in enhancing political accountability and the influence of foreign aid on economic development. Her work has appeared in the American Economic Review, Journal of Political Economy and Quarterly Journal of Economics, among others. She teaches a course in the MBA program focused on firm strategy vis a vis government in emerging markets.
King Center Supported Research
2022 - 2023 Academic Year | Global Development Research Funding
Candidate Entry Into Local Government
This research project tackles the governance challenge of getting high human capital, high integrity, representative citizens to put themselves forward for consideration as political candidates. We plan to explore potential solutions to this challenge with our partners in government and civil society in connection with the 2023 Local Council Elections in Sierra Leone. To do so we propose an initiative that would: i) identify, screen, and encourage high quality potential candidates to enter politics; and ii) share information about these potential candidates with political parties and/or civil society organizations working to enhance the electoral process. We plan to randomize this initiative across 100 of 200 local government wards to assess impacts on the pool of aspirants, selected candidates, and elected officials.
Additionally, inside the set of treated wards, we propose a sub-experiment focused on increasing female representation in politics. This will explore barriers to female participation emanating from voters, party elites and potential candidates themselves. We have already secured funding to support: i) piloting variants of the proposed intervention; ii) collecting data on the current cohort of elected Local Councillors; and iii) hiring a research manager based in-country to oversee both activities. Thus, if our application is successful, we seek King Center support to implement the gender parity sub-experiment in 100 wards, which we expect to result in a standalone contribution. Later, we will seek funding elsewhere to support endline data collection for the overarching experiment.