Great Expectations for Great Objectives
ECONOMICS |

Great Expectations for Great Objectives

THE ERC PROJECT OF ELIANA LA FERRARA INVESTIGATES SITUATIONS IN WHICH DISADVANTAGED PEOPLE QUIT CHASING POSSIBLE GOALS BECAUSE THEY CONSIDER THEM UNACHIEVABLE

Psychological factors play a role in determining and perpetuating the state of poverty. In recent literature, the phenomenon is called ‘aspiration failure’: the poor perceive certain goals, such as enrolling in a good school, as being beyond their reach and do not invest towards them. This in turn perpetuates the cycle of poverty.
 
“My project will get data to verify this theory”, says Eliana La Ferrara (Department of Economics), who has already won an ERC grant for Conflict, Identity and Markets. Her new project, hosted by IGIER - Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research, aims also to design policy interventions to leverage the aspirations. “We propose to use entertainment media such as tv series and soap operas as vehicles for changing behavior. This is a low incremental cost policy. We will also study institutional reforms, for instance in the educational system”.
 
A tutorship program has already been tested on high potential children of immigrants who attend middle schools in five provinces of Northern Italy. “We have verified if they are adequately informed and motivated in the choice of their educational path. We will continue to monitor their performance in high school”.

Read here the other articles on the ERC research projects:
The Dream Team of Research made in..ERC
University at the Time of Star Wars
The Culture That Influences Demography
For a History of Inequality in Europe
Fostering Solidarity in Times of Migrations
A Theory of Games and Emotions
Why with Broadband We will have More Children
How to Communicate Climate Science
At the Birth of Maritime Insurance
Even Distorted Choices can be Rational
The Psychology of Economic Behavior
What we are Certain about Uncertainty
Putting a Halt to the Spread of Infections
Wellbeing and Fertility, a Two-Way Relationship
The Role of Financial Imperfections
The World Through the Lens of Power
The Selection of the Political Class
How to Evaluate Innovative Ideas
A Help for Those who make Predictions
When a Government is Guided by Values
 

 

by Claudio Todesco

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