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Analysis & Policy Making

Analysis & Policy Making

What are the determinants of well-being and cooperation? Which public policies are the most relevant to enhance these social skills?

Through this second research area of SOWELL, researchers will evaluate public policies that foster well-being and pro-social behaviours of citizens, particularly in the education field via an analysis of early-childhood interventions likely to develop non-cognitive and social skills.

Programs aiming at developing cooperation and well-being will be undertaken on the ground and evaluated under the ERC SOWELL. The results from these experiments will be useful to design effective public policies.

To that end, several studies are planned. One of them will be conducted in partnership with the French Ministry of National Education, as part of “La France s’engage”, and will aim to analyze the impact of the “Energie Jeunes” program. This is a program designed to reduce the dropout rate among French middle-schoolers. The intervention’s objective is to develop their capacity for self-discipline, tenacity, and self-confidence. Confidence and social skills are essential for a successful life. Both these abilities can be furthered through appropriate policies.

Should you have any doubt about it, watch the presentation done by Yann Algan through TEDx on the School of Confidence, regarding the marshmallow effect and children’s social skills.

Self-confidence, trust in others and well-being are core attributes that go hand-in-hand. Studies that are conducted in this area (Social Mediation at School, Social Diversity in Middle Schools, Montreal Longitudinal and Experimental Study, etc.) will make it possible to determine which policies and interventions could help develop the non-cognitive and social skills that foster these attributes, right from early childhood. Their impact will also be measured through rigorous evaluation methodologies, using randomized experiments.

Another study (“Groupements de créateurs”) will focus on the social skills of young unemployed people trying to get back into work. This study is financially supported by the “Fonds d’expérimentation pour la jeunesse”.

Finally, further research will be done on management policies that are likely to enhance both the social and economic performance of organizations.


Montreal Longitudinal Experimental Study

This research analyzes the long-term effect on social preferences of an early childhood randomized intervention explicitly targeted at social skills: the Montreal Longitudinal Experiment Study (MLES).

“Groupement de Créateurs”: Encouraging Youth Entrepreneurship in France

The evaluation is about the impact of the « Groupement de Créateurs » program for young unemployed people who have expressed an interest in starting a business.

Social Diversity in Middle Schools

This unprecedented study in France aims to extend the evidence on the effects of social diversity in school to non-cognitive skill development.

Social Mediation at School

This social experimentation aimed to test the relative effectiveness of two distinct and innovative approaches to reduce school bullying and improve school climate.

“Energie Jeunes” Program

This RCT aims to evaluate the effects of a large-scale mindset intervention on school outcomes and dropouts.