Economic Demography Workshop a Success

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.

Two Faculty Members Receive Journal of Human Resources Acceptances in the Same Month

Professor Simon and Professor Furtado both had papers accepted at the Journal of Human Resources in the fall semester.

Professor Simon’s paper, “The Effects of Aggregate and Gender-Specific Labor Demand Shocks on Child Health,” coauthored with Marianne Page and Jessamyn Schaller, considers the relationship between local labor market conditions and child health. The paper shows that local (state level) labor market recessions that primarily affect women increase maternal time spent at home and improve child health, whereas recessions that affect men have the opposite effects. These patterns suggest that both maternal time and family income are important inputs to child health.

Professor Furtado’s paper, “Settling for Academia? H-1B Visas and the Career Choices of International Students in the United States,” coauthored with Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes, examines whether international students respond to U.S. immigration policy when making career decisions. The authors find that international students who require H-1B visas to work in the United States became more likely to pursue careers in academia -a sector not subject to H-1B visa caps- after the H-1B visa cap was lowered in 2004.

The Journal of Human Resources is a leading journal in applied microeconomics. According to the 2016 ISI Journal Citation Reports, the journal has an impact factor of 4.047. The journal’s website reports an acceptance rate of 4 percent.


Zheng Xu Defends Dissertation, Stays at Harvard

ZhengDefenseOn August 28th, Zheng Xu defended his dissertation, “Developing in the Era of Globalization: The Case of China” written under the supervision of major advisor Professor Delia Furtado and associate advisors, Professor Nishith Prakash, Professor Kathleen Segerson, and Professor Richard Freeman from Harvard University.

Zheng’s dissertation studies how globalization has reshaped China in terms of the labor market, environment, and media. The first chapter examines how rising demand for Chinese exports affects Chinese labor markets. Particular emphasis is given to how the massive internal migration in China shapes the labor market consequences of trade. The second chapter studies whether party-newspapers in China are less likely to report local pollution events and whether the difference distorts households’ self-protective behaviors against potential health risks. The third chapter uses the list of environmental goods endorsed by the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) to test whether export production improves air quality in China through adoption of green inputs.

Since September of 2013, Zheng has been a research fellow in the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School. In 2014, he received a CLAS Graduate Fellowship which helped support his time at Harvard. Zheng has already started a new position as postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard Center for Green Buildings and Cities.

Congratulations, Zheng!