Ernesto Schargrodsky

Ernesto Schargrodsky
Universidad Torcuato di Tella · Escuela de Negocios

About

56
Publications
10,856
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
3,268
Citations

Publications

Publications (56)
Article
Full-text available
Research Summary This paper studies the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown on criminal activity in the City of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Following quarantine restrictions, we find a large, significant, robust, and immediate decline in property crime reported to official agencies, police arrests, and crime reported in victimi...
Article
We study a propaganda campaign sponsored by the Argentine government against the main political challenger in the days preceding the 2015 runoff presidential election. Subjects in the treatment group watched an “ad” that had been aired during soccer transmissions as part of this campaign. They were then asked about their vote intentions. Relative t...
Article
We study desensitization to crime in a lab experiment by showing footage of criminal acts to a group of subjects, some of whom have been previously victimized. We measure biological markers of stress and behavioral indices of cognitive control before and after treated participants watch a series of real, crime-related videos (while the control grou...
Article
Full-text available
In the last years, several countries implemented policy interventions to entitle urban squatters, encouraged by the results of studies showing large welfare gains from entitlement. We study a natural experiment in the allocation of land titles to very poor families in a suburban area of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Although previous studies on this exp...
Article
The decentralization of public services is a major feature of institutional innovation. The main argument in support of decentralization is that it brings decisions closer to the people, thereby alleviating information asymmetries and improving accountability. However, decentralization can also degrade service provision in poor communities that lac...
Article
In the last years, several countries implemented policy interventions to entitle urban squatters, encouraged by the results of studies showing large welfare gains from entitlement. We study a natural experiment in the allocation of land titles to very poor families in a suburban area of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Although previous studies on this exp...
Article
Camine, señora, camine! (Walk, lady, walk!) The current global financial crisis has caused output to drop in many developing countries, with the World Bank estimating that 55 million more people will live on less than $1.25 a day than expected precrisis. The extent to which the crisis will have long-term impacts depends on how poor people respond t...
Article
Secure property rights are considered a key determinant of economic development. The evaluation of the causal effects of property rights, however, is a difficult task as their allocation is typically endogenous. To overcome this identification problem, we exploit a natural experiment in the allocation of land titles. In 1981, squatters occupied a p...
Article
We estimate the causal effect of mandatory participation in the military service on the involvement in criminal activities. We exploit the random assignment of young men to military service in Argentina through a draft lottery to identify this causal effect. Using a unique set of administrative data that includes draft eligibility, participation in...
Article
In this paper, we review the most significant empirical literature on the causal effects of land property rights. The literature indicates that secure property rights boost investment in both rural and urban areas. These effects, however, do not appear to be the result of improved credit conditions. In rural areas, clear land rights also lead to in...
Article
La protección de los derechos de propiedad es considerada un determinante clave del desarrollo económico. La evaluación de los efectos causales de los derechos de propiedad es, sin embargo, una tarea difícil, ya que su distribución en una sociedad es tipicamente endógena. Para superar este problema de identificación, explotamos un experimento natur...
Article
Full-text available
Crime rates in Latin America are among the highest in the world, and in several countries they have steadily risen over the past two decades, making crime the primary concern of many citizens. Despite this situation, there has been a lack of systematic effort to study crime in the region or the effectiveness of policies designed to tackle it. This...
Article
Full-text available
We study the re-arrest rates for two groups: individuals formerly in prison and individuals formerly under electronic monitoring (EM). We find that the recidivism rate of former prisoners is 22% while that for those 'treated' with electronic monitoring is 13% (40% lower). We convince ourselves that the estimates are causal using peculiarities of th...
Article
This paper examines the effects of the expansion of the water network in urban shantytowns in Argentina. We find large reductions in the presence, frequency and severity of diarrhoea episodes among children reached by network expansions relative to a control group. Moreover, expanded connections induce savings in water expenditures, as these famili...
Article
We estimate the causal effect of participation in the mandatory military service on the involvement in criminal activities. We exploit the random assignment of young men to military service in Argentina through a draft lottery to identify this causal effect. Using a unique set of administrative data that includes draft eligibility, participation in...
Article
This paper uses self-reported data on victimization, subjective well being and ideology for a panel of individuals living in six Argentine cities. While no relationship is found between happiness and victimization experiences, a correlation is documented, however, between victimization experience and changes in ideological positions. Specifically,...
Article
Argentina privatized most public utilities during the 1990's but re-nationalized the main water company in 2006. We study beliefs about the benefits of the privatization of water services amongst low and middle income groups immediately after the 2006 nationalization. Negative opinions about the privatization prevail. These are particularly strong...
Article
The decentralization of public services is a major feature of institutional innovation. The main argument in support of decentralization is that it brings decisions closer to the people, thereby alleviating information asymmetries and improving accountability. However, decentralization can also degrade service provision in poor communities that lac...
Article
We study the effects of transferring the payment of welfare subsidies from cash to deposits in a banking account accessible through ATMs, exploiting the transition of the payment system in a large welfare program in Argentina, the Plan Jefes de Hogar. The satisfaction of the beneficiaries with the payment transfer itself is explored as well as the...
Article
Full-text available
Este trabajo examina los efectos de la expansión del agua en los barriadas urbanas de Argentina. Se encuentran grandes reducciones en la presencia, frecuencia y severidad de episodios de diarrea entre los niños de las viviendas que han sido alcanzadas por la expansión de la red. Aún más, las conexiones de la expansión de agua inducen ahorros ya que...
Article
We study the formation of beliefs in a squatter settlement in the outskirts of Buenos Aires exploiting a natural experiment that induced an allocation of property rights that is exogenous to the characteristics of the squatters. There are significant differences in the beliefs that squatters with and without land titles declare to hold. Lucky squat...
Article
The study of how crime affects different income groups faces several difficulties. The first is that crime-avoiding activities vary across income groups. Thus, a lower victimization rate in one group may not reflect a lower burden of crime, but rather a higher investment in avoiding crime. A second difficulty is that, typically, only a small fracti...
Article
The initiation in criminal activities is, typically, a young phenomenon. The study of the determinants of entry into criminal activities should pay attention to major events affecting youth. In many countries, one of these important events is mandatory participation in military service. The objective of this study is to estimate the causal relation...
Article
Adequate targeting is a primary concern in the design of any social programme that attempts to reach a specific group in society. This paper studies the targeting of a healthcare-centre programme aimed at the poor that relies on household self-selection into the programme at the local level. We find that a key variable in determining utilisation of...
Article
Market research data are utilized to examine the use of changes in shopping behavior as a method of mitigating the effects of the 2002 Argentine economic crisis. Although the total quantity and real value of goods purchased fell during the crisis, consumers are found to be spending more days shopping. This increase in shopping frequency occurs thro...
Article
While most countries are committed to increasing access to safe water and thereby reducing child mortality, there is little consensus on how to actually improve water services. One important proposal under discussion is whether to privatize water provision. In the 1990s Argentina embarked on one of the largest privatization campaigns in the world i...
Article
This paper examines the recent decentralization of governance in Indonesia and its impact on local infrastructure provision. The decentralization of decisionmaking power to local jurisdictions in Indonesia may have improved the matching of public infrastructures provision with local preferences. However, decentralization has made local public infra...
Article
This paper examines the impact of urban land titling on child health. We hypothesize that land titling may translate into positive effects on health through its impact on housing investments and household structure. To address selection concerns, we take advantage of a natural experiment of land occupation in a suburban area of Buenos Aires, Argent...
Article
Full-text available
The decentralization of public services from central to local control is a major feature of institutional innovation throughout the world. The main argument in support of decentralization is that it brings decisions closer to the people, alleviating information asymmetries, agency costs, and problems of collective decision. However, decentralizatio...
Article
Full-text available
An important challenge in the crime literature is to isolate causal effects of police on crime. Following a terrorist attack on the main Jewish center in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in July 1994, all Jewish institutions received police protection. Thus, this hideous event induced a geographical allocation of police forces that can be presumed exogenou...
Article
Full-text available
In the late currency board years, Argentina faced a real exchange rate adjustment through price deflation amidst growing devaluation expectations. Using a firm-level panel database to analyze the incidence of these factors on the currency composition of private debt and on firms’ performance, we find that widespread debt dollarization showed no rel...
Article
Since the beginning of the 1980s, the world has undergone a major shift in thinking about the appropriate economic role of the state. Privatization of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) has been at the heart of this change. The track record on privatization, however, is still very limited. This holds true for Argentina, which undertook an extensive pri...
Article
We study the prices paid for basic inputs during a crackdown on corruption in the public hospitals of the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina, during 1996-97. We find a well-defined, negative effect on the measures used to capture corruption. Prices paid by hospitals for basic, homogeneous inputs decrease by 15 percent during the first 9 months of the...
Article
The empirical evaluation of the effect of land property rights typically suffers from selection problems. The allocation of property rights across households is usually not random but based on wealth, family characteristics, political clientelism, or other mechanisms built on differences between the groups that acquire property rights and the group...
Article
This article analyzes whether publicly traded firms price differently from privately held firms in the product markets. Our empirical evidence shows that, in the U.S. newspaper industry, firms increase their prices when their ownership structure changes from private to public. The effects are robust and significant. A plausible explanation is that...
Article
The main motivation for prudential regulation is to increase the solvency of the banking sector. However, it is usually understood that tighter regulation also leads to more concentration and higher spreads. Thus, these prudential measures are seen as implying a trade-off between solvency and competition. In this paper we argue that this trade-off...
Article
This paper analyzes whether the extent of product market competition that a firm faces affects its capital structure. We study the effect of competition on leverage for firms acting in the US newspaper industry. Potential endogeneity between market structure and capital structure is addressed by exploiting the exogenous development of other mass me...
Article
An important challenge in the crime literature is to isolate significant causal effects of police on crime. Following a terrorist attack on the main Jewish center in the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina, in July 1994, all Jewish and Muslim institutions (including schools, synagogues, mosques, cemeteries and clubs) were given 24-hour police surveilla...
Article
An important piece of the major fiscal and structural reforms undertaken in Argentina in the early 1990’s was the decentralization of education services from the federal government to the provincial governments. The theoretical literature does not find absolute superiority of centralization or decentralization in the provision of public services. W...
Article
The main motivation for prudential regulation is to increase the solvency of the banking sector. However, it is usually understood that tighter regulation also leads to more concentration and higher spreads. Thus, these prudential measures are seen as implying a trade-off between solvency and competition. In this paper we argue that this trade-off...
Article
Los 33 hospitales p�blicos del Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires (GCBA) adquieren sus insumos en forma descentralizada. En septiembre de 1996, la Secretar�a de Salud del GCBA implement� una pol�tica de monitoreo de precios de compra. En este trabajo utilizamos la base de datos generada por esta pol�tica para analizar dos cuestiones relacionadas...
Article
Households allocating time between market and non-market uses should respond to income variations by adjusting the time devoted to shopping search and other home production activities. In this paper, we exploit high-frequency household expenditure data to examine the use of changes in shopping intensity as a method of mitigating the effects of the...
Article
Full-text available
The possession of property rights may change the beliefs that people hold. We study this hypothesis using a natural experiment from a squatter settlement in the outskirts of Buenos Aires ensuring that the allocation of property rights is exogenous to the characteristics of the squatters. There are significant differences in the beliefs that squatte...
Article
Full-text available
Crime levels have risen significantly in Argentina during recent years. In this study, we analyze the relationship between crime victimization and income distribution. Our main question is whether the rich or the poor have been the main victims of this crime rise. For home robberies, we found that the poor have suffered the main crime increases. Fo...
Article
Full-text available
Crime levels have risen significantly in Argentina during recent years. In this study, we analyze the relationship between crime victimization and income distribution.

Network

Cited By