Proper targeting of policy interventions requires reasonable estimates of the benefits of the alternative options. To inform such decisions, we develop an integrated approach stemming from the small-area estimation literature that estimates the marginal returns to a range of assets across geographically defined subpopulations. We create a series of maps that can be overlaid with traditional poverty maps to identify strong candidate areas for intervention, though an efficiency/equity tradeoff sometimes exists. We apply our method using recent Ugandan data. Results are consistent with independent empirical findings and suggest asset specific transfer schemes would improve with a spatially targeted strategy.
Lang, C., Barrett, C. B., & Naschold, F. (2013). Targeting Maps: An Asset-Based Approach to Geographic Targeting. World Development, 41, 232-244.
Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.worlddev.2012.06.006