Projects Funded for Michael Anderson

2016-2017

The Effect of Healthy School Lunch Provision on Academic Test Scores

  • Michael Anderson

Abstract

Specific Objectives of the Project:
Estimate the effects of different school meal vendors on academic achievement, with a particular interest in whether healthy vendors have larger impacts than other vendors.

Project Report/Summary of Results:
The project assigned each vendor in our sample a “standard” or “healthy” vendor classification based on information published by the vendors. We then estimated our main specifications and found that contracting with a healthy meal vendor increases test scores by 0.03 standard deviations (relative to keeping meal preparation “in house”). The result is highly significant and robust to the inclusion of all our available control variables. We also found that contracting with a healthy vendor has almost twice as large an effect on economically disadvantaged students (0.05 standard deviations) as it does on non-disadvantaged students.

2013-2014

The Effects the Supplemental Nutrition Program on Food Purchase Decision

  • Michael Anderson

Abstract

Specific Objectives of the Project:
Original: Evaluate how changes to the WIC program have affected consumers and the foods that they purchase using scanner data from a large chain of grocery stores.
Amended: Estimate the effects of different school meal vendors on academic achievement, with a particular interest in whether healthy vendors have larger impacts than other vendors.

Project Report/Summary of Results:
The original project proved to be infeasible as the coverage of the available data was not sufficiently rich during the periods that the WIC program changed.
The amended project assigned each vendor in our sample a “standard” or “healthy” vendor classification based on information published by the vendors. We then estimated our main specifications and found that contracting with a healthy meal vendor increases test scores by 0.03 standard deviations (relative to keeping meal preparation “in house”). The result is highly significant and robust to the inclusion of all our available control variables. We also found that contracting with a healthy vendor has almost twice as large an effect on economically disadvantaged students (0.05 standard deviations) as it does on non-disadvantaged students.

2010-2011

The Effects of Information Provision on Purchases of Food Away From Home

  • Jeremy Magruder
  • Michael Anderson

Abstract

Do changes in food commodity prices have asymmetric effects on retail grocery prices? For years, farmers, consumer advocates and others have argued that grocery store prices rise rapidly in response to increases in commodity prices, but do not fall equally rapidly when commodity prices drop. We examine pricing in both stores that have regular sales and those that use everyday low pricing and rarely have sales. For both types of stores, we find very little evidence for asymmetric price adjustment. We believe that some earlier studies found asymmetric adjustments because they did not use narrowly defined products, control for all the main factor prices, and use state-of-the-arts estimation procedures.