Mathematica conducted evaluations of two activities and a related initiative under the Tanzania energy-sector project. The activities included laying a new submarine cable to provide a more reliable source of electricity to Unguja Island, extending lines into new areas, and offering low-cost electricity...
- International development
- Experimental and quasi-experimental designs
- Benefit-cost analysis
- Teacher and Principal Effectiveness
- Teacher and Principal Preparation and Support
- Democracy and Governance
Ali Protik is a senior researcher who specializes in the design and impact analysis of experimental and quasi-experimental evaluations. His work focuses on several areas of international development, including education, energy, and civic participation, and U.S. education policies.
Protik is currently the deputy project director of a study that is evaluating the impacts of a “girl-friendly” school construction program, known as BRIGHT, in rural Burkina Faso. He leads the midterm impact evaluation of the program using a regression discontinuity design, and is also conducting a preliminary benefit-cost analysis. In addition, he plays a leading role in analyzing the impacts of school dropout prevention programs in four Asian countries—Cambodia, India, Tajikistan, and Timor Leste—using a randomized controlled trial design. Protik has also led a short-term impact analysis of extending electricity lines into areas not previously connected to the power grid in Tanzania using a matched comparison group design. He has played a key role in evaluating several programs aimed at strengthening the rule of law, civil society, civic participation, media, and the inspectorate services of the national police in Rwanda using both experimental and quasi-experimental designs.
Protik is also active in education-related research in the United States. He played a key role in the Talent Transfer Initiative evaluation, an intervention that identified a district’s highest-performing teachers and offered them incentives for moving to and staying in its low-performing schools for at least two years. He was the deputy project director of this multisite random assignment study. Protik is currently part of a team that will evaluate another multisite random assignment study to evaluate the impacts of providing support to principals. He is also a certified reviewer for the What Works Clearinghouse and a lead reviewer for the Regional Educational Laboratories.
Protik joined Mathematica in 2007 and holds a Ph.D. in economics from Brown University.
Tanzania Energy-Sector Impact Evaluation
Burkina Faso: Impact Evaluation Design and Implementation for BRIGHT 1 and 2
The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) sponsored the “Burkinabé Response to Improve Girls’ Chances to Succeed,” or BRIGHT program, to improve the educational outcomes of children in Burkina Faso. Its primary focus was girls, and it was implemented in 132 villages.
Talent Transfer Initiative: Attracting and Retaining High-Performing Teachers in Low-Performing Schools
This study examined whether providing large financial incentives would encourage high-performing teachers to transfer to low-performing schools, whether those teachers would be successful at improving student achievement, and whether they would remain at the school after the payments ended.
Rwanda: Democracy and Governance Threshold Program Evaluation
Mathematica conducted a rigorous evaluation of the key activities of the Rwanda Threshold Program, which focuses on strengthening the rule of law, civil society, civic participation, media, and the inspectorate services of the national police.
The What Works Clearinghouse: Improving Practice, Research, and Policy
In 2002, the U.S. Department of Education's (ED) Institute of Education Sciences (IES) established the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) to collect, review, and report on studies of education interventions. The growing focus on evidence-based decision making increased demand for this type of information. Since...
Building the Knowledge Base on Teacher Preparation and Effectiveness
Mathematica designed and conducted three large-scale studies on the relationship between teacher preparation and effectiveness, using the most rigorous approach possible—random assignment of students to teachers from different kinds of programs—and compared student test scores to gauge teacher effectiveness.