National Bureau of Economic Research

Founded in 1920, the National Bureau of Economic Research is a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization dedicated to promoting a greater understanding of how the economy works. The NBER is the nation's leading nonprofit economic research organization. Twenty-two Nobel Prize winners in Economics and thirteen past chairs of the President's Council of Economic Advisers have been researchers at the NBER.

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During health crises, like COVID-19, individuals are inundated with messages promoting health- preserving behavior. Does additional light-touch messaging by a credible individual change behavior? Do t...

Section: Working Papers

by Abhijit Banerjee | On 01 Jul 2020

Is There a Demand for Reverse Mortgages in China? Evidence from Two Online Surveys

Reverse mortgages provide an alternative source of retirement funding by allowing older homeowners to borrow against their home. However, a recent pilot program of reserve mortgage products in several...

Section: Working Papers

by Katja Hanewald | On 01 Jan 2019

Impure Impact Giving: Theory and Evidence

The paper presents a new model of charitable giving where individuals regard out-of-pocket donations and the matches they induce as different. The paper shows that match-price elasticities combine con...

Section: Working Papers

by Daniel M. Hungerman | On 15 Aug 2018

Market Expanding or Market Stealing? Platform Competition in Bike-Sharing

The recent rise of dockless bike-sharing is dominated by two platforms: one started first in 82 Chinese cities, 59 of which were subsequently entered by the second platform. Using these variations, th...

Section: Working Papers

by Guangyu Cao | On 15 Aug 2018

Misallocation in the Market for Inputs: Enforcement and the Organization of Production

The strength of contract enforcement determines how firms source inputs and organize production. Using microdata on Indian manufacturing plants, it shows that production and sourcing decisions appear...

Section: Working Papers

by Johannes Boehm | On 15 Aug 2018

The Spread of Deposit Insurance and the Global Rise in Bank Asset Risk since the 1970s

The paper constructs a new measure of the changing generosity of deposit insurance for many countries, empirically model the international influences on the adoption and generosity of deposit insuranc...

Section: Working Papers

by Charles W. Calomiris | On 15 Aug 2018

Economic Policy for Artificial Intelligence

Recent progress in artificial intelligence (AI) – a general purpose technology affecting many industries - has been focused on advances in machine learning, which recast as a quality adjusted drop in...

Section: Working Papers

by Ajay K. Agrawal | On 01 Jun 2018

Market Integration, Demand and the Growth of Firms: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in India

In many developing countries, the average firm is small, does not grow and has low productivity. Lack of market integration and limited information on non-local products often leave consumers unaware...

Section: Working Papers

by Robert T. Jensen | On 01 Jun 2018

The Morbidity Cost of Air Pollution: Evidence from Consumer Spending in China

This paper provides knowledge the first analysis of the morbidity cost of PM2.5 for the entire population of a developing country. To address potential endogeneity in pollution exposure, it constructs...

Section: Working Papers

by Panle Jia Barwick | On 01 Jun 2018

Energy Productivity And Energy Demand: Experimental Evidence From Indian Manufacturing Plants

This paper studies a field experiment among energy-intensive Indian manufacturing plants that offered energy consulting to raise energy productivity, the amount plants can produce with e...

Section: Working Papers

by Nicholas Ryan | On 01 May 2018

Forward Guidance

The paper assesses the power of forward guidance—promises about future interest rates—as a monetary tool in a liquidity trap using a quantitative incomplete-markets model. The results suggest the effe...

Section: Working Papers

by Marcus Hagedorn | On 01 Apr 2018

Innovation and Trade Policy in a Globalized World

How do import tariffs and R&D subsidies help domestic firms compete globally? How do these policies affect aggregate growth and economic welfare? To answer these questions, the paper builds a dynamic...

Section: Working Papers

by Ufuk Akcigit | On 01 Apr 2018

The Impact of New Drug Launches on Life-Years Lost in 2015 from 19 Types of Cancer in 36 Countries

This study employs a two-way fixed effects research design to measure the mortality impact and cost-effectiveness of cancer drugs: it analyzes the correlation across 36 countries between relative mort...

Section: Working Papers

by Frank R. Lichtenberg | On 01 Apr 2018

What do Self-Reports of Wellbeing Say about Life-Cycle Theory and Policy?

The paper examines a measure of self-reported evaluative wellbeing, the Cantril Ladder, and use data from Gallup to examine wellbeing over the life-cycle. It assesses the validity of the measure, and...

Section: Working Papers

by Angus Deaton | On 05 Mar 2018

Incentives Can Reduce Bias in Online Reviews

Online reviews are a powerful means of propagating the reputations of products, services, and even employers. However, existing research suggests that online reviews often suffer from selection bias—p...

Section: Working Papers

by Ioana Marinescu | On 05 Mar 2018

Trade with Correlation

The paper develops a trade model in which productivity—the result of a country’s ability to adopt global technologies—presents an arbitrary pattern of spatial correlation. The model generates the full...

Section: Working Papers

by Nelson Lind | On 01 Mar 2018

Sticky Expectations and Consumption Dynamics

Macroeconomic models often invoke consumption “habits” to explain the substantial persistence of aggregate consumption growth. But a large literature has found no evidence of habits in microeconomic d...

Section: Working Papers

by Christopher D. Carroll | On 01 Mar 2018

Bank Liquidity, Credit Supply, and the Environment

The paper evaluates the impact of the credit conditions facing corporations on their emissions of toxic air pollutants. Exploiting cross-county, cross-time shale discoveries that generated liquidity w...

Section: Working Papers

by Ross Levine | On 01 Mar 2018

Learning When to Quit: An Empirical Model of Experimentation

The paper studies a dynamic model of the decision to continue or abandon a research project. Researchers improve their ideas over time and also learn whether those ideas will be adopted by the scienti...

Section: Working Papers

by Bernhard Ganglmair | On 26 Feb 2018

Managing Financial Globalization: Insights from the Recent Literature

This paper seeks to draw lessons for developing countries based on a survey of the recent literature on financial globalization. First, while capital account openness holds promises (by potentially lo...

Section: Working Papers

by Shang-Jin Wei | On 19 Feb 2018

Measuring the Equilibrium Impacts of Credit: Evidence from the Indian Microfinance Crisis

In October 2010, the state government of Andhra Pradesh, India issued an emergency ordinance, bringing microfinance activities in the state to a complete halt and causing a nation-wide shock to the li...

Section: Working Papers

by Emily Breza | On 19 Feb 2018

Examining the state level heterogeneity of public health expenditure in Indi a: an empirical evidence from panel data

This study explores the relationship over an extended period of time between an increase in per capita public health expenditure and per capita state’s domestic product (per capita inc...

Section: Working Papers

by Deepak Kumar Behera | On 01 Jan 2018

The Value of Pharmacogenomic Information

This paper studies of couple evidence from a real-world implementation of pharmacogenomic testing with a discrete event simulation model. It uses the framework to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of va...

Section: Working Papers

by John A. Graves | On 01 Dec 2017

Evolution of the Infant Health Production Function

This article provides a systematic review of the published literature to date on infant health production and how it has evolved over the past 3-4 decades as data have become more available, computing...

Section: Working Papers

by Hope Corman | On 01 Dec 2017

Persistent Effects of Teacher-Student Gender Matches

The paper exploits the data from middle schools in Seoul, South Korea, where students and teachers are randomly assigned to classrooms, and find that female students taught by a female versus a male t...

Section: Working Papers

by Jaegeum Lim | On 01 Dec 2017

Global Inequality When Unequal Countries Create Unequal People

Current global inequality measures assume that national-mean income does not matter to economic welfare at given household income, as measured in surveys. The paper questions...

Section: Working Papers

by Martin Ravallion | On 01 Dec 2017

The Impact of State Medical Marijuana Laws on Social Security Disability Insurance and Workers' Compensation Benefit Claiming

The authors study the effect of state medical marijuana laws (MMLs) on Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Workers' Compensation (WC) claiming. The paper uses data on benefit claiming draw...

Section: Working Papers

by Johanna Catherine Maclean | On 01 Sep 2017

East Asian Financial and Economic Development

Japan, an isolated, backward country in the 1860s, industrialized rapidly to become a major industrial power by the 1930s. South Korea, among the world’s poorest countries in the 1960s,joined the rank...

Section: Working Papers

by Randall Morck | On 01 Sep 2017

Valuing Alternative Work Arrangements

This paper uses a field experiment to study how workers value alternative work arrangements. During the application process to staff a national call center, researchers randomly offered applicants cho...

Section: Working Papers

by Alexandre Mas | On 01 Oct 2016

Emotional Judges and Unlucky Juveniles

This paper analyzes the effects of emotional shocks associated with unexpected outcomes of football games played by a prominent college team in the state. It investigates the behavior of judges, the c...

Section: Working Papers

by Ozkan Eren | On 01 Sep 2016

Substance Abuse Treatment Centers and Local Crime

This paper estimates the effects of expanding access to substance-abuse treatment on local crime. It does so using an identification strategy that leverages variation driven by substance-abuse-treatme...

Section: Working Papers

by Samuel Bondurant | On 01 Sep 2016

Zoning and the Economic Geography of Cities

Comprehensive zoning is ubiquitous in U.S. cities, yet surprisingly little is known about its long-run impacts. This paper provides the first attempt to measure the causal effect of land use regulatio...

Section: Working Papers

by Allison Shertzer | On 01 Sep 2016

The Labor Market Consequences of Refugee Supply Shocks

The continuing inflow of hundreds of thousands of refugees into many European countries has ignited much political controversy and raised questions that require a fuller understanding of the determina...

Section: Working Papers

by George Borjas | On 01 Sep 2016

Quantitative Spatial Economics

The observed uneven distribution of economic activity across space is influenced by variation in exogenous geographical characteristics and endogenous interactions between agents in goods and factor m...

Section: Working Papers

by Stephen Redding | On 01 Sep 2016

Underemployment in the Early Careers of College Graduates Following the Great Recession

Though labor market conditions steadily improved following the Great Recession, underemployment among recent college graduates continued to climb, reaching highs not seen since the early 1990s. This p...

Section: Working Papers

by Jaison Abel | On 01 Sep 2016

Long-Range Growth: Economic Development in the Global Network of Air Links

This paper studies the impact of international long-distance flights on the global spatial allocation of economic activity. To identify causal effects, it exploits variation due to regulatory and tech...

Section: Working Papers

by Filipe Campante | On 01 Sep 2016

Two Centuries of Finance and Growth in the United States, 1790-1980

Do efficient financial markets and institutions promote economic growth? Have they done so in the past? This essay, to be included in the Handbook of Finance and Development (edited by Thorsten Beck a...

Section: Working Papers

by Howard Bodenhorn | On 01 Sep 2016

National Income Accounting When Firms Insure Managers: Understanding Firm Size and Compensation Inequality.

Among U.S. publicly traded firms, the average firm's capital share has declined, even though the aggregate capital share has increased. This paper attributes the secular increase taken together capita...

Section: Working Papers

by Barney Glaser | On 01 Sep 2016

Occupational Choice in Early Industrializing Societies: Experimental Evidence on the Income and Health Effects of Industrial and Entrepreneurial Work

As low-income countries industrialize, workers choose between informal self-employment and low-skill manufacturing. What do workers trade off, and what are the long run impacts of this occupational ch...

Section: Working Papers

by Christopher Blattman | On 01 Sep 2016

Child Poverty, the Great Recession, and the Social Safety Net in the United States

This paper comprehensively examines the effects of the Great Recession on child poverty, with particular attention to the role of the social safety net in mitigating the adverse effects of shocks to e...

Section: Working Papers

by Marianne Bitler | On 01 Sep 2016

Measuring Effects of Snap on Obesity at the Intensive Margin

The effects of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) on obesity have been the focus of much debate. However, causal interpretation of estimates from previous studies, comparing particip...

Section: Working Papers

by Lorenzo Almada | On 01 Sep 2016

Understanding why Black Women are not Working Longer

Black women in current cohorts ages 50 to 72 years have lower employment than similar white women, despite having had higher employment when they were middle-aged and younger. Earlier cohorts of older...

Section: Working Papers

by Joanna Lahey | On 01 Sep 2016

Parental Resources and College Attendance: Evidence from Lottery Wins

This paper examines more than one million children whose parents won a state lottery to trace out the effect of additional household resources on college outcomes. The analysis draws on the universe o...

Section: Working Papers

by George Bulman | On 01 Sep 2016

International Evidence on Long Run Money Demand

This paper explores the long-run demand for M1 based on a dataset comprising 31 countries since 1851. In many cases, co integration tests identify a long-run equilibrium relationship between either ve...

Section: Working Papers

by Luca Benati | On 01 Aug 2016

The Gap within the Gap: Using Longitudinal Data to Understand Income Differences in Student Achievement

Gaps in educational achievement between high- and low-income children are growing. Administrative datasets maintained by states and districts lack information about income but do indicate whether a st...

Section: Working Papers

by Katherine Michelmore | On 01 Aug 2016

Depreciation of Business R&D Capital

This paper develops a forward-looking profit model to estimate the depreciation rates of business R&D capital. By using data from Compustat, BEA, and NSF between 1987 and 2008, and the newly developed...

Section: Working Papers

by Wendy Li | On 01 Aug 2016

Dynamic Effects of Teacher Turnover on the Quality of Instruction

It is widely believed that teacher turnover adversely affects the quality of instruction in urban schools serving predominantly disadvantaged children, and a growing body of research investigates vari...

Section: Working Papers

by Eric Hanushek | On 01 Aug 2016

Tobacco Regulation and Cost-Benefit Analysis: How Should we Value Foregone Consumer Surplus?

This paper outlines the history of the FDA’s recent attempts to regulate cigarettes and other tobacco products and how they have valued foregone consumer surplus in cost-benefit analyses. It discusses...

Section: Working Papers

by Helen Levy | On 01 Aug 2016

Cognitive Performance and Labour Market Outcomes

This paper uses information from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79) and supplementary data sources to examine how cognitive performance, measured at approximately the end of secon...

Section: Working Papers

by Dajun Lin | On 01 Aug 2016

Does “Ban the Box” Help or Hurt Low-Skilled Workers? Statistical Discrimination and Employment Outcomes when Criminal Histories are Hidden

Jurisdictions across the United States have adopted "ban the box" (BTB) policies preventing employers from conducting criminal background checks until late in the job application process. Their goal i...

Section: Working Papers

by Jennifer Doleac | On 01 Aug 2016

External and Internal Validity of a Geographic Quasi-Experiment Embedded in Cluster-Randomized Experiment

This paper analyzes a geographic quasi-experiment embedded in a cluster-randomized experiment in Honduras. In the experiment, average treatment effects on school enrolment and child labour were large—...

Section: Working Papers

by Sebastian Galiani | On 01 Aug 2016

Union Army Veterans, All Grown Up

This paper overviews the research opportunities made possible by a NIA-funded program project, Early Indicators, Intergenerational Processes, and Aging. Data collection began almost three decades ago...

Section: Working Papers

by Dora Costa | On 01 Aug 2016

Does Rosie Like Riveting? Male and Female Occupational Choices

This paper explores the possibility that women and men have different tastes for the content of the work they do. It runs regressions of job satisfaction on the share of males in an occupation. Overal...

Section: Working Papers

by Grace Lordan | On 01 Aug 2016

Do Private Equity Funds Manipulate Reported Returns?

Private equity funds hold assets that are hard to value. Managers may have an incentive to distort reported valuations if these are used by investors to decide on commitments to subsequent funds manag...

Section: Working Papers

by Gregory Brown | On 01 Aug 2016

The Effects of Pre-Trial Detention on Conviction, Future Crime, and Employment: Evidence from Randomly Assigned Judges

Over 20 percent of prison and jail inmates in the United States are currently awaiting trial, but little is known about the impact of pre-trial detention on defendants. This paper uses the detention t...

Section: Working Papers

by Will Dobbie | On 01 Aug 2016

Infrequent but Long-Lived Zero-Bound Episodes and the Optimal Rate of Inflation

Countries rarely hit the zero-lower bound on interest rates, but when they do, these episodes tend to be very long-lived. These two features are difficult to jointly incorporate into macroeconomic mod...

Section: Working Papers

by Marc Carreras | On 01 Aug 2016

Optimal Domestic (And External) Sovereign Default

Infrequent but turbulent episodes of outright sovereign default on domestic creditors are considered a “forgotten history” in Macroeconomics. This paper proposes a heterogeneous-agents model in which...

Section: Working Papers

by Pablo D'Erasmo | On 01 Aug 2016

Opening the Black Box of the Matching Function: The Power of Words.

How do employers attract the right workers? How important are posted wages vs. other job characteristics? Using data from the leading job board, this paper shows that most vacancies...

Section: Working Papers

by Ioana Marinescu | On 01 Aug 2016

The Consequences of Spatially Differentiated Water Pollution Regulation in China

China’s environmental regulators have sought to reduce the Yangtze River’s water pollution. This paper documents that this regulatory effort has had two unintended consequences. First, the regulation’...

Section: Working Papers

by Zhao Chen | On 01 Aug 2016

The Empirical Economics of Online Attention

This paper models and characterizes how households allocate their scarce attention in arguably the largest market for attention: the Internet. It identifies vast and expected changes in those househol...

Section: Working Papers

by Andre Boik | On 01 Jul 2016

Estimating Local Fiscal Multipliers

This paper proposes a new source of cross-sectional variation that may identify causal impacts of Government spending on the economy. It uses the fact that a large number of federal spending programs...

Section: Working Papers

by Juan Serrato | On 01 Jul 2016

Distributional Effects of Means Testing Social Security: Income Versus Wealth

This paper compares Social Security means tests that would reduce benefits for recipients who fall in the top quarter of the income distribution with means tests aimed at those in the top quarter of t...

Section: Working Papers

by Alan Gustman | On 01 Jul 2016

Measuring Polarization in High-Dimensional Data: Method and Application to Congressional Speech

This paper studies trends in the partisanship of Congressional speech from 1873 to 2009. It defines partisanship to be the ease with which an observer could infer a congressperson’s party from a fixed...

Section: Working Papers

by Matthew Gentzkow | On 01 Jul 2016

RBC Methodology and the Development of Aggregate Economic Theory

This essay reviews the development of neoclassical growth theory, a unified theory of aggregate economic phenomena that was first used to study business cycles and aggregate labor supply. The focus of...

Section: Working Papers

by Edward Prescott | On 01 Jul 2016

Finders, Keepers?

Natural resource taxation and investment often exhibit cyclical behaviour, associated with shifts in political power. Why do finders get to keep more of their discoveries in some periods than others?...

Section: Working Papers

by Niko Jaakkola | On 01 Jul 2016

Can Paying Firms Quicker Affect Aggregate Employment?

This paper studies the impact of reform on county-sector employment growth over three years. Despite firms being paid just 15 days sooner, we find payroll increased 10 cents for each accelerated dolla...

Section: Working Papers

by Jean Barrot | On 01 Jul 2016

Bridging the Gap: Do Fast Reacting Fossil Technologies Facilitate Renewable Energy Diffusion?

This paper discusses the role of fossil-based power generation technologies in supporting renewable energy investments. It studies the deployment of technologies conditional on all other drivers in 26...

Section: Working Papers

by Elena Verdolini | On 01 Jul 2016

Heterogeneity and Unemployment Dynamics

This paper develops new estimates of flows into and out of unemployment that allow for unobserved heterogeneity across workers as well as direct effects of unemployment duration on unemployment-exit p...

Section: Working Papers

by Hie Ahn | On 01 Jul 2016

New Evidence on Trust and Well-Being

This paper reports existing and fresh evidence on some of the direct and indirect linkages between trust and subjective well-being. This paper first uses data from three large international surveys –...

Section: Working Papers

by John Helliwell | On 01 Jul 2016

External Validity in a Stochastic World

This paper examines the generalizability of internally valid estimates of causal effects in a fixed population over time when that population is subject to aggregate shocks. This temporal external val...

Section: Working Papers

by Mark Rosenzweig | On 01 Jul 2016

Bringing Real Market Participants' Real Preferences into the Lab: An Experiment that Changed the Course Allocation Mechanism at Wharton

This paper reports on an experimental test of a new market design that is attractive in theory but makes the common and potentially unrealistic assumption that “agents report their type”; that is, tha...

Section: Working Papers

by Eric Budish | On 01 Jul 2016

The General Equilibrium Impacts of Unemployment Insurance: Evidence from a Large Online Job Board

During the Great Recession, U.S. unemployment benefits were extended by up to 73 weeks. Theory predicts that extensions increase unemployment by discouraging job search, a partial equilibrium effect....

Section: Working Papers

by Ioana Marinescu | On 01 Jul 2016

Experimenting with Entrepreneurship: The Effect of Job-Protected Leave

This paper studies whether potential entrepreneurs remain in wage employment because of the danger that they will face worse job opportunities should their entrepreneurial ventures fail? Using a Canad...

Section: Working Papers

by Ting Xu | On 01 Jul 2016

How Japan and the US can Reduce the Stress of Aging

In this paper, the author simulates the Dependency Ratio (DR) under various conditions and makes comparisons with the US. Japan has experienced a large increase in its DR because its fertility rate is...

Section: Working Papers

by Claudia Goldin | On 01 Jul 2016

Fire-Sale Externalities

This paper characterizes the efficiency properties of competitive economies with financial constraints and fire sales. It shows that two distinct pecuniary externalities occur in such settings: distri...

Section: Working Papers

by Eduardo Dávila | On 01 Jul 2016

Do Government Audits Reduce Corruption: Estimating the Impacts of Exposing Corrupt Politicians

This paper examines the extent to which government audits of public resources can reduce corruption by enhancing political and judiciary accountability. It does so in the context of Brazil’s anti-corr...

Section: Working Papers

by Eric Avis | On 01 Jul 2016

Contracting out the Last-Mile of Service Delivery: Subsidized Food Distribution in Indonesia

The paper examines these issues by conducting a randomized field experiment in 572 Indonesian localities in which a procurement process was introduced that allowed citizens to bid to take over the imp...

Section: Working Papers

by Abhijit Banerjee | On 01 Dec 2015

Long Run Trends in Unemployment and Labor Force Participation in China

Unemployment rates in countries across the world are typically positively correlated with GDP. China is an unusual outlier from the pattern, with abnormally low, and suspiciously stable, unemployment...

Section: Working Papers

by Shuaizhang Feng | On 01 Aug 2015

The Minimum Wage and the Great Recession: Evidence of Effects on the Employment and Income Trajectories of Low-Skilled Workers

The paper estimates the minimum wage's effects on low-skilled workers' employment and income trajectories. The increased binding minimum wage had significant, negative effects on the employment and in...

Section: Working Papers

by Jeffrey Clemens | On 16 Jan 2015

Improving Educational Outcomes in Developing Countries: Lessons from Rigorous Evaluations

This paper describes four lessons derived from 115 rigorous impact evaluations of educational initiatives in 33 low- and middle-income countries. First, reducing the costs of going to school and provi...

Section: Working Papers

by Richard Murnane | On 01 Jul 2014

Drawn into Violence: Evidence on 'What Makes a Criminal' from the Vietnam Draft Lotteries

Draft lottery number assignment during the Vietnam Era provides a natural experiment to examine the effects of military service on crime. Using exact dates of birth for inmates in state and federal pr...

Section: Working Papers

by Jason Lindo | On 03 Feb 2012

Child Gender And Parental Investments In India: Are Boys And Girls Treated Differently?

Although previous research has not always found that boys and girls are treated differently in rural India, son-biased stopping rules imply that estimates of the effect of gender on parental investmen...

Section: Working Papers

by Silvia H. Barcellos | On 10 Jan 2012

The Benefits of Breastfeeding Across the Early Years of Childhood

The choice to breastfeed rather than formula-feed an infant as well as the duration of doing so has been scrutinized in more recent times. Yet, key identification issues remain to be resolved, includi...

Section: Working Papers

by Clive Belfield | On 01 Oct 2010

Why Is Mobility in India So Low? Social Insurance, Inequality, and Growth

This paper examines the hypothesis that the persistence of low spatial and marital mobility in rural India, despite increased growth rates and rising inequality in recent years, is due to the existenc...

Section: Working Papers

by Kaivan Munshi | On 01 Apr 2009

Teacher Preparation and Student Achievement

There are fierce debates over the best way to prepare teachers. Some argue that easing entry into teaching is necessary to attract strong candidates, while others argue that investing in high quality...

Section: Working Papers

by Donald Boyd | On 10 Sep 2008

Offshoring in a Ricardian World

Falling costs of coordination and communication have allowed firms in rich countries to fragment their production process and offshore an increasing share of the value chain to low-wage countries. Thi...

Section: Working Papers

by Andrés Rodríguez-Clare | On 05 Jun 2007

The Persistence of Underdevelopment:Institutions, Human Capital or Constituencies?

Why is underdevelopment so persistent? One explanation is that poor countries do not have institutions that can support growth. Because institutions (both good and bad) are persistent, underdevelopmen...

Section: Working Papers

by Raghuram G. Rajan | On 01 Jun 2007

Population Ageing

Population aging is primarily the result of past declines in fertility, which produced a decades long period in which the ratio of dependents to working age adults was reduced. Rising old-age dependen...

Section: Working Papers

by David N. Weil | On 01 Jun 2007

A Century of Work and Leisure

Has leisure increased over the last century? Standard measures of hours worked suggest that it has. In this paper, we develop a comprehensive measure of non-leisure hours that includes market work, ho...

Section: Working Papers

by Valerie Ramey | On 01 Jun 2007

Child Labor

The essay is to provides a detailed overview of the state of the recent empirical literature on why and how children work as well as the consequences of that work. It provides a descriptive overview o...

Section: Discussion Papers

by Eric Edmonds | On 01 Jun 2007

On The Distributional Consequences Of Child Labor Legislation

A dynamic heterogeneous agent general equilibrium model is constructed to quantify the effects of child labor legislation on human capital accumulation and the distribution of wealth and welfare. Cruc...

Section: Working Papers

by Dirk Krueger | On 23 May 2007

Selection into Worst Forms of Child Labor: Child Domestics, Porters and Ragpickers in Nepal

A large literature considers why children work, but little is known about why children participate in activities that are labeled worst forms of child labor. The principal international convention o...

Section: Working Papers

by Eric Edmonds | On 20 Apr 2007

The IMF in a World of Private Capital Markets

The IMF attempts to stabilize private capital flows to emerging markets by providing public monitoring and emergency finance. In analyzing its role we contrast cases where banks and bondholders do the...

Section: Working Papers

by Barry Eichengreen | On 18 Apr 2007

The Formation And Evolution Of Physician Treatment Styles: An Application To Cesarean Sections

Small-area-variation studies have shown that physician treatment styles differ substantially both between and within markets, controlling for patient characteristics. Using a data set containing the u...

Section: Working Papers

by Andrew Epstein | On 18 Apr 2007

The Future of Drug Development: the Economics of Pharmacogenomics

This paper models how the evolving field of pharmacogenomics (PG), which is the science of using genomic markers to predict drug response, may impact drug development times, attrition rates, costs,and...

Section: Working Papers

by John A. Vernon | On 18 Apr 2007

Trade Liberalization And Pollution Havens

U.S. Presidential Executive Order 13141 commits the United States to a "careful assessment and consideration of the environmental impacts of trade agreements." The most direct mechanism through which...

Section: Working Papers

by Josh Ederington | On 16 Apr 2007

The Intergenerational Effects Of Worker Displacement

This paper uses variation induced by firm closures to explore the intergenerational effects of worker displacement. Using a Canadian panel of administrative data that follows almost 60,000 father-chil...

Section: Working Papers

by Philip Oreopolous | On 16 Apr 2007

Trade Liberalization, Poverty And Inequality: Evidence From Indian Districts

Although it is commonly believed that trade liberalization results in higher GDP, little is known about its effects on poverty and inequality. This paper uses the sharp trade liberalization in India i...

Section: Working Papers

by Petia Topalova | On 16 Apr 2007

Infant And Child Health: NBER Research Summary

Why has the underlyinghealth or morbidity of newborns, as proxied by the rate of low birth weight births, remained so immovable? Even more baffling, why has there been so little change in newborn heal...

Section: Working Papers

by Ted Joyce | On 13 Apr 2007

Supporting “The Best And Brightest” In Science And Engineering: NSF Graduate Research Fellowships

The National Science Foundation's (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship (GRF) is a highly prestigious award for science and engineering (S&E) graduate students. This paper uses data from 1952 to 2004 on...

Section: Working Papers

by Richard B. Freeman | On 13 Apr 2007

Aid and Growth: What Does The Cross-Country Evidence Really Show?

We examine the effects of aid on growth--in cross-sectional and panel data--after correcting for the bias that aid typically goes to poorer countries, or to countries after poor performance. Even afte...

Section: Working Papers

by Raghuram G. Rajan | On 10 Apr 2007

Biology As Destiny? Short And Long-Run Determinants Of Intergenerational Transmission Of Birth Weight

Little is known about the mechanisms underlying the transfer of economic status between generations. This paper addresses the question of whether inter-generational correlations in health contribute t...

Section: Working Papers

by Janet Currie | On 10 Apr 2007

We Can Work It Out - The Globalisation of ICT-enabled Services

This paper examines the relationship between the share of employment potentially affected by offshoring and economic and structural factors, including trade in business services and foreign direct inv...

Section: Working Papers

by Desiree Welsum | On 12 Jan 2007

Understanding South Africa's Economic Puzzles

South Africa has undergone a remarkable transformation since its democratic transition in 1994, but economic growth and employment generation have been disappointing. Most worryingly, unemployment is...

Section: Working Papers

by Dani Rodrik | On 13 Oct 2006

Do Television and Radio Destroy Social Capital? Evidence from Indonesian Villages

In "Bowling Alone," Putnam (1995) famously argued that the rise of television may be responsible for social capital's decline. I investigate this hypothesis in the context of Indonesian villages. To i...

Section: Working Papers

by Benjamin A. Olken | On 13 Oct 2006

China's Embrace of Globalisation

As China has become an increasingly important part of the global trading system over the past two decades, interest in the country and its international economic policies has increased among internati...

Section: Working Papers

by Lee Branstetter | On 02 Oct 2006

Multilateralising Regionalism: Sphagetti Bowls as building Blocs on the Path to Global Free Trade

This paper addresses the final steps to global free trade -- the political economy forces that might drive them, and the role the WTO might play in guiding them. Two facts form the departure point: 1)...

Section: Working Papers

by Richard Baldwin | On 05 Sep 2006

The Economic Costs of the Iraq War: An Appraisal Three Years After the Beginning of the Conflict

Many aspects of the Iraq venture have turned out differently from what was purported before the war: there were no weapons of mass destruction, no clear link between Al Qaeda and Iraq, no imminent dan...

Section: Working Papers

by Linda Bilmes | On 01 Feb 2006

The Determinants of Mortality

Mortality rates have fallen dramatically over time, starting in a few countries in the 18th century, and continuing to fall today. In just the past century, life expectancy has increased by over 30 ye...

Section: Working Papers

by David M. Cutler | On 31 Jan 2006

The Social Cost of Foreign Exchange Reserves

There has been a very rapid rise since the early 1990s in foreign reserves held by developing countries. These reserves have climbed to almost 30 percent of developing countries' GDP and 8 months of i...

Section: Working Papers

by Dani Rodrik | On 27 Jan 2006

What’s So Special about China’s Exports?

Much more than comparative advantage and free markets have been at play in shaping China's export success. Government policies have helped nurture domestic capabilities in consumer electronics and oth...

Section: Working Papers

by Dani Rodrik | On 01 Jan 2006

The Economic Impact of AIDS Treatment: Labor Supply in Western Kenya

Using longitudinal survey data collected in collaboration with a treatment program, this paper is the first to estimate the economic impacts of antiretroviral treatment in Africa. The responses in two...

Section: Working Papers

by Harsha Thirumurthy | On 30 Dec 2005

Universal Childcare, Maternal Labor Supply, and Family Well-Being

The growing labour force participation of women with small children in both the U.S. and Canada has led to calls for increased public financing for childcare. The optimality of public financing depend...

Section: Working Papers

by Michael Baker | On 02 Dec 2005

Who’s Going Broke? Comparing Growth in Healthcare Costs in Ten OECD Countries

Government healthcare expenditures have been growing much more rapidly than GDP in OECD countries. For example, between 1970 and 2002 these expenditures grew 2.3 times faster than GDP in the U.S., 2.0...

Section: Working Papers

by Laurence J. Kotlikoff | On 01 Dec 2005

Remedying Education: Evidence from Two Randomised Experiments in India

This paper presents the results of two experiments conducted in Mumbai and Vadodara, India, designed to evaluate ways to improve the quality of education in urban slums. A remedial education programme...

Section: Working Papers

by Abhijit Banerjee | On 01 Dec 2005

Has Financial Development Made the World Riskier?

Developments in the financial sector have led to an expansion in its ability to spread risks. The increase in the risk bearing capacity of economies, as well as in actual risk taking, has led to a ran...

Section: Working Papers

by Raghuram G. Rajan | On 16 Nov 2005

Mughal Decline, Climate Change, and Britain’s Industrial Ascent:An Integrated Perspective on India’s 18th and 19th Century Deindustrialization

India was a major player in the world export market for textiles in the early 18th century, but by the middle of the 19th century it had lost all of its export market and much of its domestic market....

Section: Working Papers

by David Clingingsmith | On 10 Nov 2005

Underground Gun Markets

This paper provides an economic analysis of underground gun markets drawing on interviews with gang members, gun dealers, professional thieves, prostitutes, police, public school security guards and t...

Section: Working Papers

by Philip J. Cook | On 01 Nov 2005


The construction of large dams is one of the most costly and controversial forms of public infrastructure investment in developing countries, but little is known about their impact. This paper studies...

Section: Working Papers

by Esther Duflo | On 01 Oct 2005

Personal Well-Being During Growth

This paper considers the relative importance of improvements in economic status in explaining improvements in non-monetary measures of well-being during Vietnam's economic boom in the 1990s.

Section: Working Papers

by Eric Edmonds | On 22 Jul 2004

Measuring Poverty in a Growing World

The extent to which growth reduces global poverty has been disputed for 30 years. A major problem is that consumption measured from household surveys, which is used to measure poverty, grows less rapi...

Section: Working Papers

by Angus Deaton | On 01 Jul 2003