Xiupeng Wang successfully defended his PhD dissertation “Three Essays: Cross-National Comparisons of Labor Market Dynamics” in June and will take a position as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with the Initiative on the Digital Economy in the Sloan School of Management headed by Professor Erik Brynjolfsson. The Economics Department congratulates Xiupeng on his success!
In his dissertation, Wang examined patterns of employment and wage dynamics that occur in response to technological innovation across multiple countries. A key finding of his work is that those in middle skill jobs with relatively stronger skills systematically move to more cognitively oriented jobs with better pay when technology is introduced. In contrast those in middle skill jobs with relatively weaker skills among workers in that category move to worse jobs characterized by manual work and worse pay when technology is introduced. His research also shows that countries with higher levels of unionization tend to have fewer workers who move into lower paid jobs as technology is introduced. Wang’s thesis committee consisted of Professors Ken Couch and Delia Furtado of UConn and Professor Richard Freeman of Harvard University.
The most recent Journal Citation Reports (JCR) 2-year impact factor for the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management (JPAM) that was released in late June is 3.44, a historical high for the journal. The JCR ranking of economics journals based on the 2-year impact factor places JPAM 27th among economics journals. In the 5 rankings released during UConn economics Professor Kenneth Couch’s term as Editor-in-Chief, JPAM has been successively ranked 42nd, 32nd, 25th, 21st, and 27th in economics. The journal has also been ranked among the top 5 Public Administration journals for the past 5 years.
The Journal of Policy Analysis and Management is the flagship journal of the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM), an association of roughly 100 institutions focused on policy analysis and policy management. Couch’s term as Editor-in-Chief ended on June 30th and the editorial home of the journal moved from UConn to American University where Erdal Tekin will serve as Editor-in-Chief.
Professor Jorge Agüero’s paper “The Intergenerational Transmission of Schooling among the Education-Rationed,” has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Human Resources.
Professor Agüero’s paper, coauthored with his former student Maithili Ramachandran, estimates the intergenerational transmission of schooling in a country where the majority of the population was rationed in its access to education. By eliminating apartheid-style policies against blacks, the 1980 education reform in Zimbabwe swiftly tripled the progression rate to secondary schools. Using a fuzzy regression discontinuity design, the authors find a robust intergenerational transmission. Several smoothness and placebo tests further validate their design. The authors show that both marriage and labor markets are key pathways in the schooling transmissions.
This is the third paper from the Department of Economics to be accepted at the Journal of Human Resources this academic year, along with papers from Professor Simon and Professor Furtado in the fall semester: Two Faculty Members Receive Journal of Human Resources Acceptances in the Same Month
We congratulate Michael DiNardi on his recent successful final defense of his dissertation entitled ‘Three Essays in Health and Labor Economics”. Mike will move on after graduation to join the Economics Department at the University of Rhode Island in the Fall of 2018 in a tenure track faculty position. His dissertation examined three different topics, two dealing with public health insurance. In one chapter, Mike looked at the impact of health insurance expansions on work behavior of individuals who gain coverage. In another, he explores the impact of expansions of health insurance coverage on staffing of nurses in hospitals. The third topic examined was the impact of internet expansions on individual health. Mike’s dissertation committee consisted of Ken Couch, David Simon, and Melanie Guldi.
Professor Furtado chaired the organizing committee for this year’s Economic Demography Workshop (EDW) held this past April in Denver, Colorado.
For over twenty years, economists have gathered in the afternoon before the Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America (PAA) to present and discuss their work on demographic issues. This year’s agenda consisted of panels on occupational licensing, gender and human capital, and immigration policy. Papers presented in previous years have since been published in top journals, and Professor Furtado believes that this year’s papers are headed in the same direction.
Zinnia Mukherjee, an ’09 PhD graduate of the Department of Economics, received the Professor of the Year award at the Simmons College Senior Faculty Banquet in April.
This award, voted upon each year by the entire graduating class of Simmons College, recognizes outstanding work “in teaching, advising, and providing support and guidance to students.”
William Alpert, Associate Professor Emeritus, was recently awarded the Thomas E. Recchio Faculty Coordinator Award for Academic Leadership in the University’s Early College Experience program (ECE).
The Early College Experience, one of the first concurrent enrollment programs in the world, is committed to providing access to and preparation for post-secondary education programs through its ability to offer University of Connecticut courses to high school students in their high schools. ECE is committed to excellence in education by fostering a relationship between higher education and partner high schools to create an effective transition for students who have made college a goal.
Professor Alpert began his association with the ECE program in Economics in 2002 with two instructors participating at two Connecticut high schools. By April 2018 Economics fielded 30 economics (Principles Microeconomics, Principles Macroeconomics and Essentials of Economics) with classes in more than 30 schools with well over 30 teachers certified as ECE instructors or preceptors in Economics.
In presenting the award, Professor Recchio (English) noted Professor Alpert’s distinguished publication record, saying it represented the Early College Experience Program’s dedication to serious scholarship.
Dominic Albino, a fourth-year graduate student in the department, and co-authors Seth Frey and Paul Williams have had their paper, “Synergistic Information Processing Encrypts Strategic Reasoning in Poker,” accepted for publication in the journal Cognitive Science.
To win at poker, players must exploit public signals from opponents, but using those signals usually makes the player’s own strategy vulnerable. The paper uses 1.75 million hands of online poker data to show that winning players successfully encrypt their strategy, using their own cards like the private key in public key cryptography. By doing so, they are able to solve the problem of exploiting others while remaining protected themselves and turn uncertainty, usually considered a liability, into an advantage.
A copy of the paper may be found on Dominic Albino’s ResearchGate page.
The New York FED is one of five Federal Reserve Banks that host the FED Challenge Competition. The regional winners go to the final round at the FED in Washington D.C. College Fed Challenge is a team competition for undergraduate students. Teams analyze economic and financial conditions and formulate a monetary policy recommendation, modeling the Federal Open Market Committee.
The 5 team participants were:
Front row: Ryan Dodd, Olga Jaramillo; Middle row: Chris McLaughlin (a two time participant), graduate assistants PD Aditya and Gul-e-Rana; Back row: Esteban Peralta, Randall Giles.
The students were assisted in their preparations by Professors Oskar Harmon, Kanda Naknoi and Steven Lanza.
The team received invaluable assistance from three graduate student assistants (PD Aditya , Di Yang, and Gul-e-Rana from the Stamford Business School MBA.