I am an economist and Kleinheinz Fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution. I work on topics across public and labor economics, often forming research partnerships with government agencies to improve public services and gain insight into social behavior. I am also a Research Affiliate at the Institute of Labor Economics (IZA) and an Affiliated Scholar with the Deliberative Democracy Lab at Stanford's Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law (CDDRL).
I received a PhD in Economics from Harvard University and a BA in Economics and International Relations from Stanford University.
Office: Herbert Hoover Memorial Building (HHMB) 107
434 Galvez Mall
Stanford, CA 94305
Using administrative data on Jewish refugees fleeing the Former Soviet Bloc for the United States between 1955 and 2000, along with survey data on Israeli citizens born in the Former Soviet Bloc, we demonstrate persistent downstream political consequences of living as a targeted minority under a repressive, communist regime. Using a within-family research design, we show that individuals who spent longer periods living under a Soviet Bloc government are more likely to engage in backlash against the regime that oppressed them by (1) being more likely to vote in their new democratic countries and (2) affiliating with right-wing political parties most unlike ruling regimes in their origin countries.
Using administrative criminal records from Texas, we show that heat increases crime in a heterogeneous way across neighborhoods with different housing and economic characteristics. The heterogeneity allows us to predict how effective certain forms of adaptation will be at reducing the impacts of climate change on criminal activity. Our simulations show adaptation reducing, but not completely offsetting, these impacts. Differential rates of adaptation across neighborhoods will likely exacerbate the consequences of already unequal exposure to climate change across society.
Using data on the paths of all hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin from 1992 to 2017, this paper studies whether migration has served as a form of adaptation to hurricane risk. The findings show that on average hurricanes have little to no impact on county out-migration, with population-weighted exposure to hurricanes increasing slightly over the sample period. Counties with high economic activity see net in-migration in the years after a hurricane. Further, return migration likely plays a role in offsetting any out-migration in the year of the storm. The intensity of pre-hurricane migration between county pairs is a strong predictor of excess migration after a hurricane, suggesting that existing economic and social ties dominate in post-hurricane migration decisions. Given existing policies and incentives, the economic and social benefits that people derive from living in high-risk areas currently outweigh the incentive to adapt to future storms by relocating across counties.
Most U.S. government spending on highways and bridges is done through “scaling” procurement auctions, in which private construction firms submit unit price bids for each piece of material required to complete a project. Using data on bridge maintenance projects undertaken by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT), we present evidence that firm bidding behavior in this context is consistent with optimal skewing under risk aversion: firms limit their risk exposure by placing lower unit bids on items with greater uncertainty. We estimate the amount of uncertainty in each auction, and the distribution of bidders’ private costs and risk aversion. Simulating equilibrium item-level bids under counterfactual settings, we estimate the fraction of project spending that is due to risk and evaluate auction mechanisms under consideration by policymakers. We find that scaling auctions provide substantial savings relative to lump sum auctions and show how our framework can be used to evaluate alternative auction designs.
We study the mental health of graduate students and faculty at 14 Economics departments in Europe. Using clinically validated surveys sent out in the fall of 2021, we find that 34.7% of graduate students experience moderate to severe symptoms of depression or anxiety and 17.3% report suicidal or self-harm ideation in a two-week period. Only 19.2% of students with significant symptoms are in treatment. 15.8% of faculty members experience moderate to severe depression or anxiety symptoms, with prevalence higher among non-tenure track (42.9%) and tenure track (31.4%) faculty than tenured (9.6%) faculty. We estimate that the COVID-19 pandemic accounts for about 74% of the higher prevalence of depression symptoms and 30% of the higher prevalence of anxiety symptoms in our European sample relative to a 2017 U.S. sample of economics graduate students. We also document issues in the work environment, including a high incidence of sexual harassment, and make recommendations for improvement.