Kate Orkin


Kate is an applied microeconomist, working in labour, public, development and behavioural economics. She mainly runs large field experiments in Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and South Africa, developing and testing real-world interventions in partnership with governments and NGOs. Her research is in four main areas: frictions in urban developing country labour markets that prevent young people from finding work and interventions that can reduce these frictions; the role of mental health in labour market decisions and how treatments for mental health improve labour market outcomes; the design of cash transfer and wage subsidy programmes; and how interventions to boost aspirations alter beliefs about oneself and expectations about the future and, in turn, economic and political behaviour.

Selected Publications
  • Garlick, R., K. Orkin, S. Quinn. Forthcoming. "Call Me Maybe: Experimental Evidence on Using Mobile Phones to Survey Microenterprises." World Bank Economic Review.
  • Tol, W., S. Murray, C. Lund, P. Bolton, L. Murray, T. Davies, J. Haushofer, K. Orkin, M. Witte, L. Salama, V. Patel, G. Thornicroft, J. Bass. 2019. "Can Mental Health Treatments Help Prevent or Reduce Intimate Partner Violence in Low- and Middle-Income Countries? A Systematic Review." BMC Women's Health, 19(1): 34-49.
  • Esopo, K., D. Mellow, C. Thomas, H. Uckat, J. Abraham, P. Jain, C. Jang, N. Otis, M. Riis-Vestergaard, A. Starcev, K. Orkin*, J. Haushofer*. 2018. "Measuring Self-Efficacy, Executive Function, and Temporal Discounting in Kenya." Behaviour, Research and Therapy, 101: 30-45. *joint last author.
  • Bernard, T., Dercon, S., Orkin, K. and Seyoum Taffesse, A. Forthcoming. "Parental Aspirations for Children’s Education – Is There a 'Girl Effect'? Experimental Evidence from Rural Ethiopia." American Economic Review Papers and Proceedings109 (May): 127-132.
  • Bernard, T., Dercon, S., Orkin, K. and Seyoum Taffesse, A. 2015. "Will Video Kill the Radio Star? Assessing the Potential of Targeted Exposure to Role Models through Video." World Bank Economic Review ABCDE Papers and Proceedings, 29 (1): S226-S237.
CSAE Working Papers

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