The evaluation of public policies is of paramount importance for modern policy making, especially in a period of severe budget constraints. The literature has proposed several methods to deal with the issue of causality and counterfactual evaluation in a variety of contexts, with an increasing attention to the local dimension. My book aims to present the state-of-the-art of evaluation techniques with a special focus on the consideration of geographical and spatial effects into existing methodologies (such as propensity score matching, regression discontinuity, difference-in-difference). Furthermore, the volume highlights how strict the identification conditions for models with spatial effects are and proposes instrumental variables as a technique able to circumvent the issue. Finally, some insights into the emerging literature on ex ante evaluation are offered with respect to EU Cohesion Policy.
The book can be purchased here.