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How do Labels and Vouchers Shape Unconditional Cash Transfers? Experimental Evidence from Georgia

December 2023 — By Miguel Ángel Borrella-Mas, Jaime Millán-Quijano, Anastasia Terskaya

We implemented a randomized control trial in Georgia to study how labels and food vouchers affect household expenditure among low-income recipients of unconditional cash transfers. Households were randomly assigned to receive only an unconditional cash transfer, a label indicating an amount intended for children’s expenses in addition to the transfer, or a portion of the transfer as a food voucher usable exclusively at designated stores. We find that labelling increases the share of expenditure on children. Meanwhile, food vouchers reduce total consumption, this being likely due to the increased cost associated with shopping at voucher-accepting shops.