William Easterly at the NYU development research institute blog:
Rigorous ex-post evaluation finds no evidence that Olympics produces Olympic medals
Using data conveniently available from the Peruvian, Ecuadorean, Bolivian, and Chilean Olympic trials, the study compared athletes who just made the Olympic team with those who just fell short….
Read the whole thing to appreciate since it is a very quick read — so much short that to quote extensively from it would not be fair use.
I just hope the the anti-public-health activists who claim there is no evidence that tobacco harm reduction works do not learn this methodology. Of course, it might still be an improvement if they looked at evidence at all.