KiuFunza Key Publications

KiuFunza III (2019 – 2022)

The evidence on KiuFunza III has not been published yet, but a descriptive brief can be found in the KF III RISE insight note:


“We describe results of KiuFunza 3, a teacher performance pay programme that offers individual cash rewards for core foundational skills to teachers in lower primary. The programme uses a simple incentive design based on results from an earlier study. To make the programme easier to scale, we further simplified implementation and sharply reduced the costs of high-stakes student assessments. Despite the lower cost, we find the incentives cause substantial improvements in foundational reading and numeracy.”

KiuFunza II (2015 – 2017)

The KiuFunza II evaluation results were published in this article in the Economic Journal (2023):


Abstract: We use a nationally representative field experiment in Tanzania to compare two teacher performance pay systems in public primary schools: a ‘pay-for-percentile’ system (a rank-order tournament) and a ‘levels’ system that features multiple proficiency thresholds. Pay for percentile can potentially induce socially optimal effort among teachers, while levels systems can encourage teachers to focus on students near passing thresholds. Despite the theoretical advantage of the tournament system, we find that both systems improved student test scores across the distribution of initial learning levels after two years. However, the levels system is easier to implement and is more cost effective.


A shorter non-technical version of the results can be found in the KF II impact brief (World Bank). Evidence on the teacher attendance impact based on this experiment is documented in this RISE working paper. An in-depth description of teacher attitudes and how performance pay can lead to whole-school improvement is provided in the KF II qualitative study.

KiuFunza I (2013 – 2015)

The KiuFunza I randomized evaluation results were published in this article in the 2019 Quarterly Journal of Economics:


Abstract: We present results from a large-scale randomized experiment across 350 schools in Tanzania that studied the impact of providing schools with (i) unconditional grants, (ii) teacher incentives based on student performance, and (iii) both of the above. After two years, we find (i) no impact on student test scores from providing school grants, (ii) some evidence of positive effects from teacher incentives, and (iii) significant positive effects from providing both programs. Most important, we find strong evidence of complementarities between the programs, with the effect of joint provision being significantly greater than the sum of the individual effects. Our results suggest that combining spending on school inputs (the default policy) with improved teacher incentives could substantially increase the cost-effectiveness of public spending on education.


A shorter non-technical version of the results can be found in the KF I impact brief (J-PAL)


This paper in the Journal of African Economies (2021) describes opinions of teachers and parents on the idea and implementation of paying teachers for objective measures of student learning. The research finds that “.. 96% of teachers support the idea of teacher performance pay, while 61% favour at least some performance-linked element in a future salary increase. Further, 80% of head teachers support performance pay.