CREB - Center for Research in Economics and Business

Farah Said


Farah Said is a Senior Research Fellow at CREB and Assistant Professor at the Lahore School of Economics who focuses on understanding how individuals make decisions under conditions of poverty. Her research interests are in the areas of development economics, applied microeconomics and behavioural economics. In her research she looks at the effect of access to resources on decisions made, and outcomes of low-income households and businesses. She focuses on how decision making differs for women from these households, and the constraints women face when making labour market decisions. In other work, Farah is testing the demand for innovative microfinance products, determining the role that behavioural interventions can have in improving repayment rates for on pay-as-you-go solar solutions; and the long-run effects of secondary schooling programs for young women in Pakistan. In a recent publication in Oxford Review of Economic Policy, with colleagues at NYU, Oxford and Lahore University of Management Sciences, she has looked at the likely impact of COVID-19 crisis on the microfinance sector in Pakistan, drawing lessons for microfinance sectors around the world.

Email: farahs@lahoreschool.edu.pk
Google Website:https://sites.google.com/site/farahziasaid/

Journal Articles

Intrahousehold Consumption Allocation and Demand for Agency: A triple experimental investigation (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’Adda and Marcel Fafchamps),
American Economic Journal: Applied Economics (Forthcoming)

Home-based Enterprises: Experimental Evidence on Female Preferences from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud),
Economic Development and Cultural Change (Forthcoming)

COVID-19 and the Future of Microfinance: Evidence and Insights from Pakistan (with Kashif Malik, Muhammad Meki, Jonathan Morduch, Timothy Ogden and Simon Quinn),
Review of Economic Policy, Vol 36, Issue Supplement_1, 2020

It is not power, but how you use it: Experimental evidence on altruism from households in Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud)
Applied Economic Letters, Vol 27(5), 2019

Two Sides of the Same Rupee? Comparing Demand for Microcredit and Microsaving in a Framed Field Experiment in Rural Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn),The Economic Journal, 128(614), 2161-2190, 2018

Diversification on Small farms: An Empirical Investigation of Panel Data for 2001-10 (with Sadia Hussain), The Lahore Journal of Economics, 22: SE, 233 - 250, 2017

Access to Finance and Agency: An Overview of the Constraints to Female-Run Enterprise, Lahore Journal of Economics, 21: SE, 331 – 349, 2016

Risk Taking and Risk Learning after a rare event: Evidence from a field experiment in Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal and Ginger Turner),Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 118, 167 – 183, 2015

Determinants of Export Performance in the wake of the Global Financial Crisis: Evidence from South Asia (with Hamna Ahmed), Pakistan Development Review, Special Edition 57 (4), 2012

Macro Level Determinants of Poverty: Investigation through Poverty Mapping of Districts of Pakistan (with Mahreen Mahmud and Tareena Musaddiq), Pakistan Development Review, Special Edition 53 (4), 2011

Internal Migration Patterns in Pakistan: Case for fiscal decentralization (with Mahreen Mahmud and Tareena Musaddiq), Pakistan Development Review, Special Edition 49 (4), 2010

Book Chapters

The Effect of Early Flood Warnings on Mitigation and Recovery during the 2010 Pakistan Floods (with Uzma Afzal, Karen Campbell and Ginger Turner), Ashbindu Singh and Zinta Zommers (Eds.), Preventing Disaster: Early Warning Systems for Climate Change, United Nations Environmental Programme, 2014

Working Papers

Home-Bias among Female Entrepreneurs: Experimental Evidence on Preferences from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), CREB Working Paper, No. 04-20, 2020

The Role of Flexibility and Planning in Repayment Discipline: Evidence from a Field Experiment on Pay-as-You-Go Off-Grid Electricity (with Jacopo Bonan, Giovanna d'Adda, and Mahreen Mahmud), RFF-CMCC Working Paper, No. 20-14, 2020

Gender Differences in Willingness to Compete (with Muhammad Ahmed Nazif),CREB Working Paper, No. 03-20, 2020

Can Competition Reduce Moral Hazard? A Laboratory Experiment (with Raja Abdur Rehman), CREB Working Paper, No. 02-20, 2020

Implicit and Explicit Commitment in Credit and Savings Contracts: A field experiment (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn), NBER Working Paper, No. w25802, 2019

The Impact of School Facilities on Drop outs in Pakistan (with Mahniya Zafar), CREB Working Paper, No. 03-19, 2019

Intrahousehold Consumption Allocation and Demand for Agency: A triple experimental investigation (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’Adda and Marcel Fafchamps), NBER Working Paper, 24977, 2018

Hiding Money: Evidence from a field experiment with aspiring female entrepreneurs (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), CSAE Working Paper, No. WPS/2017-07, 2017

Homophily in Strategic Behaviour in Social Interactions: Evidence from a Lab Experiment (with Zeenat Ansari),CREB Working Paper, No. 02-17, 2017

Microcredit and Microsaving for Microenterprises in Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn), International Growth Center Working Paper, 2016

Natural Disasters and Social Capital: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal and Ginger Turner),CREB Working Paper, No. 02-15, 2015

Attitudes Towards Risk in the Wake of a Rare Event: Evidence from Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal and Ginger Turner), CREB Working Paper, No. 02-14, 2014

Other Publications

Microfinance (with Jing Cai, Erica Field, Cynthia Kinnan, Muhammad Meki, Jonathan Morduch, Jonathan de Quidt and Simon Quinn), Microfinance Report: VoxDevLit, 3(1), 2021

COVID-19 and the Future of Microfinance: Evidence and Insights from Pakistan (with Kashif Z Malik),Article: Mahbub Ul Haq Research Center at LUMS, 2021

Non-cognitive skills, psychological well-being and learning outcomes among college students (with Maryiam Haroon and Mahniya Zafar), CREB Policy Brief, No. 02-20, 2020

How will coronavirus change the global microfinance industry? (with Muhammad Meki, Jonathan Morduch, Timothy Ogden and Simon Quinn), Article: Economics Observatory, Aid & International Development, 2020

Undergraduate Female Students in Lahore: Perceived Constraints to Female Labour Force Participation (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee),CREB Policy Paper, No. 01-20, 2020

COVID-19 and urban households in Lahore, Pakistan (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), CREB Policy Brief, No. 01-20, 2020

Demand for power and control in consumption decisions in the household (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’Adda and Marcel Fafchamps),Article: VOXEU/CEPR, 2018

Women’s Take-Up of Credit Versus Commitment Savings Products in Rural Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn), Article: J-PAL, 2017

Presentations at Conferences

Undergraduate Female Students in Lahore: Perceived Constraints to Female Labour Force Participation (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), Ahmedabad University's 2nd Annual Economics Conference: Economics in Challenging Times, 2021

COVID-19 and the Future of Microfinance: Evidence and Insights from Pakistan (with Kashif Malik, Muhammad Meki, Jonathan Morduch, Timothy Ogden and Simon Quinn), 6th South Asia Economic Policy Network Conference on Covid-19 and Informality in South Asia, The World Bank, 2020

Undergraduate Female Students in Lahore: Perceived Constraints to Female Labour Force Participation (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), GLM-IZA Conference on “Labor Markets in South Asia: Evidence and Policy Lessons”, Kathmandu, Nepal, 2019

Home-bias among Female Entrepreneurs: Experimental Evidence on Preferences from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), Conference on Randomised Control Trials, Department of Economics at Monash University, the Monash Business School Centre for Development Economics and Sustainability (CDES) and Centre for Global Business (CGB), Melbourne, 2019

Intrahousehold Consumption Allocation and Demand for Agency: A triple experimental investigation (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda and Marcel Fafchamps), Second International Conference on Applied Development Economics, Lahore School of Economics, 2019

Undergraduate Female Students in Lahore: Perceived Constraints to Female Labour Force Participation (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), Second International Conference Applied Development Economics, Lahore School of Economics, 2019

When nudge comes to shove: Demand for commitment in microfinance contracts (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn), American Economic Association, Atlanta, USA, 2019

The Impact of School Facilities on Drop outs in Pakistan (with Mahniya Zafar), Thirteenth International Conference on Education and Information Management (ICEIM-2019), Istanbul, Turkey, 2019

When nudge comes to shove: Demand for commitment in microfinance contracts (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn), First International Conference on Applied Development Economics, Lahore School of Economics, 2018

Microfinance for Startups: Experimental Evidence from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), Royal Economic Society Annual Conference, Sussex, UK, 2018

Identity among Female Entrepreneurs: Experimental Evidence on Preferences from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), Royal Economic Society Annual Conference, Sussex, UK, 2018

Microfinance for Startups: Experimental Evidence from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), CSAE conference, Oxford, UK, 2018

Identity among Female Entrepreneurs: Experimental Evidence on Preferences from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), CSAE conference, Oxford, UK, 2018

Overcoming constraints to female labour force entry (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), IZA/DFID Conference on New Research on Labour Markets in Low Income Countries, 2018

Hiding Money: Evidence from a field experiment with aspiring female entrepreneurs (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), Second International Conference: Microfinance products and processes - Lessons from the field, Lahore School of Economics, 2017

Diversification on Small Farms: An Empirical Investigation of Panel Data for 2001–10 (with Sadia Hussain), Thirteenth International Conference on the Management of the Pakistan Economy, Lahore School of Economics, 2017

Agency in Female Entrepreneurs (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), What Works Global Summit, London, UK, 2016

Intrahousehold Consumption Allocation and Demand for Agency: A triple experimental investigation (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda and Marcel Fafchamps), Advances with Field Experiments, Chicago, USA, 2016

Agency in Female Entrepreneurs (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), Symposium on Economic Experiments in Developing Countries (SEEDEC), Nairobi, Kenya, 2016

Impact Assessment of start-up loans to female run microenterprises (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), First International Conference on Microfinance Products and Processes: Lessons from the field, Lahore School of Economics, 2016

Access to Finance and Agency: What constrains business creation? (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), Twelfth International Conference on the Management of Pakistan Economy: Technology, entrepreneurship and productive growth. Where Pakistan stands and where it must go, Lahore School of Economics, 2016

Two Sides of the Same Rupee? Comparing Demand for Microcredit and Microsaving in a Framed Field Experiment in Rural Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn), CASE Conference, Oxford, UK, 2015

Two Sides of the Same Rupee? Comparing Demand for Microcredit and Microsaving in a Framed Field Experiment in Rural Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn), iiG Conference: Improving Institutions for Growth, Oxford, UK, 2015

Presentations at Seminars and Workshops

Undergraduate Female Students in Lahore: Perceived Constraints to Female Labour Force Participation (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), GIGA Lunch Time Seminar, University of Hamburg, 2021

Non-cognitive skills, psychological well-being and learning outcomes among college students (with Maryiam Haroon and Mahniya Zafar), Lahore School/LUMS/Duke DevLab Joint Workshop, 2020

Constraints to Female Labour Force Participation in Pakistan (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), Seminar at Govt. Allama Iqbal College, Sialkot, 2020

COVID-19 and the Future of Microfinance: Evidence and Insights from Pakistan (with Kashif Malik, Muhammad Meki, Jonathan Morduch, Timothy Ogden and Simon Quinn), IPA and FinDev Gateway Webinar on Microfinance and COVID-19, Pakistan, 2020

COVID-19 and the Future of Microfinance: Evidence and Insights from Pakistan(with Kashif Malik, Muhammad Meki, Jonathan Morduch, Timothy Ogden and Simon Quinn), Pakistan Microfinance Network Webinar on Microfinance and COVID-19, Pakistan, 2020

Home-bias among Female Entrepreneurs: Experimental Evidence on Preferences from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), The Brown Bag Seminar at the Department of Economics, Lahore University of Management Sciences, 2020

Constraints to Female Labour Force Participation in Pakistan (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee), Empirical Study of Gender (EGEN), Lahore, 2018

Identity and Microenterprise: Evidence from Pakistan (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), Paris School of Economics Summer School, France, 2018

Intrahousehold Consumption Allocation and Demand for Agency: A triple experimental investigation (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda and Marcel Fafchamps), Health and Gender: Global and Economic Perspectives, University of Essex, UK, 2016

Microcredit and Agency: Is there a link? (with Azam Chaudhry, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud), School of Global and Area Studies, University of Oxford, UK, 2016

Miscellaneous

Co-convener (with Hamna Ahmed, Maryiam Haroon and Zunia Saif Tirmazee) Applied Development Economics Conference, Lahore School of Economics, 2021

Shared knowledge and experience in the field on Randomization & Power Calculations; Data Analysis; Survey Design, CERP M&E Bootcamp, 2021

Shared knowledge and experience in the field on Behavioral Economics in Policy Making, Learner's Republic Fellowship Program, 2021

Co-convener (with Hamna Ahmed and Maryiam Haroon) Applied Development Economics Conference, Lahore School of Economics, 2018, 2019, 2020

Worked as a Mentor with a group of early career researchers to help identify and develop a joint project, possibly leading to grant proposals fundable by international organizations, PEDL Matchmaking Workshop, 2020

Shared knowledge and experience in the field on Evidence-based Policy Design, Executive Education Program with the Centre for Economic Research in Pakistan (CERP), 2020

CERP-CLEAR Evidence Based Program Design Workshop (with Hamna Ahmed and Anam Shoaib), 2020

Discussed the implications of the crises for low-income households in developing countries, focusing on insights from her work with female entrepreneurs. Also, summarized results from a study on demand for solar electricity products in rural Sindh, Roundtable on Insights from Young Women Economists, 2020

Shared knowledge and experience in the field on Behavioral Economics in Policy Making (with Hamna Ahmed and Fadi Makki), National School of Public Policy, 2020

Shared knowledge and experience in the field on Measuring Time and Risk Preferences in the Field (with Muhammad Meki), University of Oxford, 2020

Shared knowledge and experience in the field on Impact Evaluation Designs (with Maryiam Haroon), Webinar on Evaluation Methods in collaboration with Centre for Economic Research in Pakistan as part of CLEAR’s gLOCAL Evaluation Week, 2020

Shared knowledge and experience in the field on Behavioral Economics, Nudges for Development, Ministry of Planning, Development and Reforms, UNDP Pakistan and the Swiss Development Cooperation, Islamabad, 2020

Shared knowledge and experience in the field (with Hamna Ahmed), Behavioral Economics in Policy Making, National School of Public Policy, Lahore, 2019

Roundtable on Capacity Building in Behavioral Insights, using experience from the field in behavioral economics, Symposium on Behavioral Economics in Policy Planning, Lahore, 2019

Research in Progress

The Role of Non-cognitive Skills in Improving Academic Performance (with Maryiam Haroon and Mahniya Zafar). RAs: Aiman Farrukh, Saniya Jilani, Fizza Rahman and Maria Syed

Political Consequences of Reliable Electricity (with Jacopo Bonan, Giovanna d’Adda and Mahreen Mahmud)

Strengthening Schools Accountability Mechanisms through Participation: Addressing Education Quality (with Parul Bakhshi, Sheretta Barnes, Maryiam Haroon, Peter Hovmand, Amin Mayel, Nidhi Singal, Jean-Francois Trani, Juanita Vasquez-Escallon and Muhammad Tahir Waqar)

Overcoming Constraints to Female Labor Force Entry (with Hamna Ahmed, Mahreen Mahmud and Zunia Saif Tirmazee)

Electricity Reliability and Small Business Performance (with Jacopo Bonan, Giovanna d'Adda and Simon Quinn)

Educate the Girls: Long Run Effects of a Secondary Schooling for Girls (with Tareena Musaddiq)

Constraints to Female Entrepreneurship in Pakistan: the Role of Women's Goals and Aspirations (with Giovanna d'Adda, Mahreen Mahmud and Diego Ubfal)

Behavior Insights for Evidence Based Policy Making (with Sonia Balhotra, Sadia Hussain, Asia Maselko and Siham Sikander)

Microcredit and Microsaving for Microenterprises in Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d'Adda, Marcel Fafchamps and Simon Quinn)

Access to Solar Electricity in Rural Sindh: Role of Payment Schedule and Planning (with Jacopo Bonan, Giovanna d'Adda, Mahreen Mahmud and Massimo Tavoni)

Pressures from Peers and Spouses and Self-control Problems as Constraints to Microenterprise Growth: Experimental Evidence from Pakistan (with Uzma Afzal, Giovanna d’adda and Marcel Fafchamps)