Economics External Seminar: Michael Gechter (Penn State)
Michael Gechter (Penn State)
1B6, Priory Road Complex
Title: Evaluating Ex Ante Counterfactual Predictions Using Ex Post Causal Inference
(with Cyrus Samii, Rajeev Dehejia, and Kiki Pop-Eleches).
Abstract: We derive a formal, decision-based method for comparing the performance of counterfactual treatment regime predictions using the results of experiments that give relevant information on the distribution of treated outcomes. Our approach allows us to quantify and assess the statistical significance of differential performance for optimal treatment regimes estimated from structural models, extrapolated treatment effects, expert opinion, and other methods. We apply our method to evaluate optimal treatment regimes for conditional cash transfer programs across countries where predictions are generated using data from experimental evaluations in other countries and pre-program data in the country of interest.