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Faculty Updates

Our faculty have been busy this year advancing the bounds of economic scholarship, engaging the world and setting high standards for our students. Visit the homepage for more publications and news!


Ronald Braeutigam

Ronald Braeutigam and David Besanko (Kellogg) completed the sixth edition of their intermediate micro textbook, Microeconomics. It has now been published by John Wiley & Sons.

Ivan Canay

Ivan Canay holds a NSF TRIPODS award to support The Institute for Data, Econometrics, Algorithms, and Learning (IDEAL), a multi-discipline and multi-institution collaborative institute that focuses on key aspects of the theoretical foundations of data science. He continues to serve on the editorial board of the Journal of Econometrics, the Journal of Business and Economic Statistics, and the Econometrics Journal and is the recipient of the best Associate Editor award from The Journal of Econometrics. His journal publications this year include "Testing Continuity of a Density via g-order statistics in the Regression Discontinuity Design” (joint with Federico Bugni), forthcoming in the Journal of Econometrics.

Eddie Dekel 

Eddie Dekel received an NSF grant that will support his joint research with Bart Lipman (Boston University, MA, USA) and Elchanan Ben Porath (Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel) on mechanism design with evidence. The main question is how to design mechanisms that optimally elicit evidence that individuals may have and help the mechanism designer decide on an optimal allocation of some good among the agents.

Piotr Dworczak

Piotr Dworczak continues to be inspired by topics of economic inequality. His most recent research addresses the problem of optimal allocation of goods by a designer with redistributive concerns. One of the most exciting applications of this framework is the distribution of vaccines during the current pandemic.

Robert Gordon

Robert Gordon published “Transatlantic Technologies: The Role of ICT in the Evolution of U.S. and European Productivity Growth,” International Productivity Monitor, Spring 2020, no. 38, pp. 51-81 (co-authored with Hassan Sayed, WCAS '19). He is a member of the NBER Business Cycle Dating Committee that declared February 2020 to be the official peak of the U.S. business cycle, marking the end of the record-breaking expansion that lasted for 128 months.  He was quoted in Barron’s, The Economist, Financial Times, The Korea Times, The New York Times, the Nikkei Asia Review, and The Wall Street Journal.

Joel Horowitz 

Joel Horowitz, Richard Blundell (University College London), and Matthias Parey (University of Surrey) are collaborating on research about how frequently occurring measurement errors called "Berkson Errors" affect estimates of demand functions and predictions based on demand functions of the effects of policy measures.  Together with Ph.D. student Ahnaf Rafi, Horowitz is investigating the ability of the bootstrap to provide asymptotic refinements for statistics based on penalized estimators of high-dimensional nonlinear models.  Horowitz and Sokbae Lee (Columbia University) are investigating improved computational methods for estimating a class of discrete response models whose computation with existing methods is very difficult.

Harry Pei

Harry Pei focused his research primarily on three topics this year: reputation effects, learning, and law and economics. In a recent joint paper with Drew Fudenberg and Ying Gao, they explored the benefits of building a reputation for keeping one's word. Another joint paper with Yingkai Li (Northwestern graduate student in computer science) established a new concentration inequality that can be used to construct equilibrium in repeated games. Professor Pei continues to work with Yingkai to study the long-term outcomes when people have misspecified beliefs about the time lag between decisions and feedback. This relates to the COVID-19 pandemic when people are learning about the effectiveness of lockdowns, wearing masks, and so on. He is also exploring judicial mechanisms that can encourage investigators to acquire information in ongoing work with Bruno Strulovici.

Ian Savage

Ian Savage is the President-elect of the Transportation and Public Utilities Group, one of the member associations of the ASSA. He is also the conference chair for the 2021 virtual annual meeting of the Transportation Research Forum. Ian Savage has been working with the World Bank on a research project for evaluating strategies to reduce the loss of life in road crashes in developing countries. These countries are rapidly motorizing and have very high rates of fatalities. He published an article with Joshua Klieger (WCAS, '17) based on an MMSS senior honors paper. The paper, "Motor vehicle drivers’ behavioral response to increased bicycle traffic" (Journal of Safety Research, 74:97-102 (2020)) explored whether the increased use of bicycles in various locations in Chicago led to drivers to moderate their speed. The answer was yes, but not by much. 

Molly Schnell

Molly Schnell received an R01 from the NIH to investigate the short- and long-term effects of exposure to school shootings (joint with Maya Rossin-Slater, Marika Cabral, Hannes Schwandt, and Victor Carrion). The grant provides support for follow-up work to Schnell and co-authors' recent publication in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences titled "Local Exposure to School Shootings and Youth Antidepressant Use." In the paper, they find that antidepressant use among youth increases by over 20% in the years following a local school shooting.

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