Publications

Working Paper
Andreas Leibbrandt and John A. List. Working Paper. “Do Equal Employment Opportunity Statements Backfire? Evidence From A Natural Field Experiment On Job-Entry Decisions.” National Bureau of Economic Research.
Maria Carreri and Oeindrila Dube. Working Paper. “"Do Natural Resources Influence Who Comes to Power, and How?"”. carreridube2016.pdf
Michael Pomirchy and Bryan Schonfeld. Working Paper. “Does Responsiveness Stop at the Water’s Edge? Examining the Foreign Policy Electoral Connection”. pomirchyschonfeld.pdf
Pierre Azoulay, Christian Fons-Rosen, and Joshua S. Graff Zivin. Working Paper. “Does Science Advance One Funeral at a Time?”.Abstract

We study the extent to which eminent scientists shape the vitality of their fields by examining entry rates into the fields of 452 academic life scientists who pass away while at the peak of their scientific abilities. Key to our analyses is a novel way to delineate boundaries around scientific fields by appealing solely to intellectual linkages between scientists and their publications, rather than collaboration or co-citation patterns. Consistent with previous research, the flow of articles by collaborators into affected fields decreases precipitously after the death of a star scientist (relative to control fields). In contrast, we find that the flow of articles by non-collaborators increases by 8% on average. These additional contributions are disproportionately likely to be highly cited. They are also more likely to be authored by scientists who were not previously active in the deceased superstar’s field. Overall, these results suggest that outsiders are reluctant to challenge leadership within a field when the star is alive and that a number of barriers may constrain entry even after she is gone. Intellectual, social, and resource barriers all impede entry, with outsiders only entering subfields that offer a less hostile landscape for the support and acceptance of “foreign” ideas.

azoulayetal2015.pdf
Stefan Zeranski and Ibrahim E. Sancak. Working Paper. “Does the "Wirecard AG" Case Address Fintech Crises?”. Available hereAbstract
This paper analyzes the Wirecard AG case from a digital finance perspective. The relatively low pace of digital transformation of financial supervisors and the high speed of advancements in technology increase the technological gaps between supervisors and their responsibility areas and result in a new phenomenon named “asymmetric technology”. This transition period's lagged and foggy atmosphere might be very conducive to potential white-collar fraudsters who plan to abuse their TECHs in Finance advantages. Fueled by inconsistent supervisory approaches, national protectionism in reaction to trade wars, fierce competitions among national economies, and unattractive yields at money markets, potential white-collar fraudsters come up with great opportunities to abuse FinTech related companies at capital markets. Therefore, the Wirecard AG case has multiple aspects and causes, not only one. Nevertheless, many aspects of today’s financial sectors address new FinTech crises and FinTech related scandals, not only in one country but also in every economy, developing or developed ones. Therefore, governments and financial supervisors should brace for FinTech crises and financial scandals in the near future unless they meet structural reform and digital transformation requirements.
Yi Che, Yi Lu, Justin R. Pierce, Peter K. Schott, and Zhigang Tao. Working Paper. “"Does Trade Liberalization with China Influence U.S. Elections?"”.Abstract

This paper examines the impact of trade liberalization on U.S. Congressional elections. We find that U.S. counties subject to greater competition from China via a change in U.S. trade policy exhibit relative increases in turnout, the share of votes cast for Democrats and the probability that the county is represented by a Democrat. We find that these changes are consistent with Democrats in office during the period examined being more likely than Republicans to support legislation limiting import competition or favoring economic assistance.

cheetal2016.pdf
Daniel J. Moroz, Daniel J. Aronoff, Neha Narula, and David C. Parkes. Working Paper. “Double-Spend Counterattacks: Threat of Retaliation in Proof-of-Work Systems.” CoRR abs/2002.10736.
J. Stephen Ferris, Stanley L. Winer, and Bernard Grofman. Working Paper. “"The Duverger-Demsetz Perspective on Electoral Competitiveness and Fragmentation: With Application to the Canadian Parliamentary System, 1867-2011”. ferrisetal2016.pdf
Working Paper. Early Marriages in Middle East and North Africa. Initiative on VAW, Carr Center, Harvard Kennedy School.Abstract

"Child marriage remains a widely ignored violation of the health and development rights of girls and young women” (IPPF, 2006). Many reasons are given by parents and guardians to justify child marriage.  Economic reasons often underpin these decisions which are directly linked to poverty and the lack of economic opportunities for girls in rural areas. Girls are either seen as an economic burden or valued as capital for their exchange value in terms of goods, money or livestock. A combination of cultural, traditional, and religious arguments are examples utilized to justify child marriage. The fear and stigma attached to premarital sex and bearing children outside marriage, and the associated family “honor,” are often seen as valid reasons for the actions that families take. Finally, many parents tend to curtail the education of their girls and marry them off, due to fear of the high level of sexual violence and abuse encountered en route to, and even at, school.

earlymarriagemiddleeastnafrica.pdf
Lee Alston and Bernardo Mueller. Working Paper. “"Economic Backwardness and Catching Up: Brazilian Agriculture, 1964-2014"”.Abstract

No abstract available.

alstonmueller2015.pdf
Douglas A. Irwin and Maksym G. Chepeliev. Working Paper. “The Economic Consequences of Sir Robert Peel: A Quantitative Assessment of the Repeal of the Corn Laws”.Abstract
Britain’s repeal of the Corn Laws in 1846 was the signature trade policy event of the nineteenth century. This paper provides a quantitative general equilibrium evaluation of the repeal on sectoral output and employment, factor prices and income distribution, international trade and the terms of trade, and economic welfare based on a detailed input-output matrix of the British economy in 1841. We find that the repeal left Britain’s overall welfare roughly unchanged, or perhaps negligibly (0.1 percent) lower, as the static efficiency gains are offset by the adverse terms-of-trade effects of the tariff reduction. Labor and capital gained a slight amount of income at the expense of landowners (whose income fell about 3-5 percent). Combining the changes in factor payments with different consumption patterns across income groups, we find that the top 10 percent of income earners lose while the bottom 90 percent of income earners, who spent a disproportionate amount of their income on food, gain. To assess whether the model yields reasonable results, we compare the model’s output, price, and trade predictions with the actual ex post outcomes.
irwin_on_corn_laws.pdf
Vincenzo Galasso and Salvatore Nunnari. Working Paper. “The Economic Effects of Electoral Rules: Evidence from Unemployment Benefits”.Abstract
This paper provides a novel test of the link from electoral rules to economic policies. We focus on unemployment benefits because their classification as a broad or targeted transfer may vary — over time and across countries — according to the geographical dispersion of unemployed citizens, the main beneficiaries of the program. A simple theoretical model delivers unambiguous predictions on the interaction between electoral institutions and the unemployment rate in contestable and safe districts: electoral incentives induce more generous unemployment benefits in majoritarian than in proportional systems if and only if the unemployment rate is higher in contestable than in safe districts. We test this prediction using a novel dataset with information on electoral competitiveness and unemployment rates at district level, and di↵erent measures of unemployment benefit generosity for 16 OECD countries between 1980 and 2011. The empirical analysis strongly supports the theoretical predictions.
galassonunnari2018.pdf
Leander Heldring, James A. Robinson, and Sebastian Vollmer. Working Paper. “THE ECONOMIC EFFECTS OF THE ENGLISH PARLIAMENTARY ENCLOSURES”.Abstract
We use a dataset of the entire population of English Parliamentary enclosure acts between 1750 and 1830 to provide the first causal evidence of their impact. Exploiting a feature of the Parliamentary process that produced such legislation as a source of exogenous variation, we show that Parliamentary enclosures were associated with significantly higher crop yields, but also higher land inequality. Our results are in line with a literature going back to Arthur Young and Karl Marx on the effects of Parliamentary enclosure on productivity and inequality. They do not support the argument that informal systems of governance or “private orderings”, even in small, cohesive, and stable communities, were able to efficiently allocate commonly used and governed resources.
robinson_et_al_enclosures.pdf
Avidit Acharya and Alexander Lee. Working Paper. “"Economic Foundations of the Territorial State System"”.Abstract
The contemporary world is organized into a system of territorial states in which rulers exercise authority inside clearly dened boundaries and recognize the authority of other rulers outside those boundaries. We argue that this system can be rationalized as an economic cartel in which self-interested and forward-looking rulers maintain high tax revenues by reducing competition in the \market for governance." Our theory explains how the major economic and military developments in Europe starting in the 15th century contributed to the development of this system.
acharyalee2018.pdf
Pablo Beramendi and Jeffrey Jensen. Working Paper. “Economic Geography, Political Inequality, and Public Goods in the Original 13 U.S. States”.Abstract
A large and fruitful literature has focused on the impact of colonial legacies on long-term
development. Yet the mechanisms through which these legacies get transmitted over time remain ambiguous. This paper analyzes the choice and eects of legislative representation as one such mechanism, driven by elites interested in maximizing jointly economic prospects and political influence over time. We focus on malapportionment in the legislatures of the original thirteen British North-American colonies. Their joint independence created a unique juncture in which postcolonial elites simultaneously chose the legislative and electoral institutions under which they would operate. We show that the initial choice of apportionment in the state legislatures is largely a function of economic geography, that such a choice generated persistent differences in representation patterns within states (political inequality), and that the latter shaped public goods provision in the long run.
beramendietal2018.pdf
Ernesto Dal Bo, Frederico Finan, Olle Folke, Torsten Persson, and Johanna Rickne. Working Paper. “Economic Losers and Political Winners: Sweden's Radical Right”.Abstract
We study the rise of the Sweden Democrats, a radical-right party that rose from negligible size in 2002 to Swedenís third largest party in 2014. We use comprehensive data to study both its politicians (supply side) and voters (demand side). All political candidates for the party can be identified in register data, which also lets us aggregate individual social and economic conditions in municipalities or voting districts and relate them to the party's vote share. We take a starting point in two key economic events: (i) a series of policy reforms in 2006-2011 that significantly widened the disposable- income gap between "insiders" and "outsiders" in the labor market, and (ii) the financial-crisis recession that doubled the job-loss risk for "vulnerable" vs "secure" insiders. On the supply side, the Sweden Democrats over-represent both losing groups relative to the population, whereas all other parties under-represent them, results which also hold when we disaggregate across time, subgroups, and municipalities. On the demand side, the local increase in the insider-outsider income gap, as well as the share of vulnerable insiders, are systematically associated with larger electoral gains for the Sweden Democrats. These findings can be given a citizen-candidate interpretation: economic losers (as we demonstrate) decrease their trust in established parties and institutions. As a result, some economic losers became Sweden-Democrat candidates, and many more supported the party electorally to obtain greater descriptive representation. This way, Swedish politics became potentially more inclusive. But the politicians elected for the Sweden Democrats score lower on expertise, moral values, and social trust ñas do their voters which made local political selection less valence oriented.
dalboetal2018.pdf
Richard C. Sutch. Working Paper. “The Economics of African American Slavery: The Cliometrics Debate”.Abstract
This working paper explores the significant contributions to the history of African-American
slavery made by the application of the tools of cliometrics. As used here “cliometrics” is defined as a method of scientific analysis marked by the explicit use of economic theory and quantitative methods. American slavery of the late antebellum period [1840-1860] was one of the earliest topics that cliometricians focused on and, arguably, the topic upon which they made the largest impact.
sutch2018.pdf
Daniel Enemark, Clark C. Gibson, Matthew D. McCubbins, and Brigitte Seim. Working Paper. “"Effect of Holding Office on the Behavior of Politicians"”.Abstract

Reciprocity is central to our understanding of politics. Most political exchanges—whether they involve legislative vote trading, interbranch bargaining, constituent service, or even the corrupt exchange of public resources for private wealth—require reciprocity. But how does reciprocity arise? Do government officials learn reciprocity while holding office, or do recruitment and selection practices favor those who already adhere to a norm of reciprocity? We recruit Zambian politicians who narrowly won or lost a previous election to play behavioral games that provide a measure of reciprocity. This combination of regression discontinuity and experimental designs allows us to estimate the effect of holding office on behavior. We find that holding office increases adherence to the norm of reciprocity. This study identifies causal effects of holding office on politicians’ behavior.

enemarketal2016.pdf
Peter Buisseret and Carlos Prato. Working Paper. “"Electoral Accountability in Multi-Member Districts"”.Abstract
In many political jurisdictions, electoral districts are served by multiple representatives. In
these multi-member district (MMD) contexts, elections pit incumbent legislators not only against challengers from rival parties, but also other incumbents in the same district, including co-partisan incumbents. We develop a formal theory of legislative representation in MMD systems, in which legislators trade o the pursuit of collective goals versus cultivating personal reputations. We unearth contexts in which MMD electoral systems can more eectively balance the interests of voters and parties as competing principals, relative to single-member districts (SMD). Our framework allows us to unify and re-examine a raft of existing theoretical and empirical claims about the consequences of proportional representation, and further derive new and testable empirical hypothesis about legislative cohesion across dierent MMD electoral rules.
buisseretprato2017.pdf
Thomas Bassetti and Filippo Pavesi. Working Paper. “"Electoral Contributions and the Cost of Unpopularity."”.Abstract
When considering electoral campaigns, candidates receiving contributions from relatively unpopular industries should be regarded less favorably by voters that have information on the sources of funding. To offset this unpopularity effect, politicians may either demand more money for campaign advertising from these industries in order to persuade less informed voters, or shy away from unpopular contributors to avoid losing the support of the informed electorate. Our model predicts that the first effect dominates, and electoral contributions are increasing in industry unpopularity. By using U.S. House elections data and different identification strategies, we provide robust evidence in favor of our predictions.
bassettipavesi2017.pdf

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