Funded Research

Our funding interests are organized around the following four drivers of economic growth: macroeconomic policy, market structure, the labor market, and human capital. We consider proposals that investigate the consequences of economic inequality, as well as group dimensions of inequality; the causes of inequality to the extent that understanding these causal pathways will help us identify and understand key channels through which inequality may affect growth and stability; and the ways in which public policies affect the relationship between inequality and growth.

Explore the Grants We've Awarded

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Between exclusion and cumulative advantage: Effects of within-organization mobility on inequality

Grant Year: 2019

Grant Amount: $30,510, co-funded with the Russell Sage Foundation

Grant Type: academic

This research seeks to empirically disentangle and quantify job moves that occur within versus between employers. It utilizes two main sources of data: the Current Population Survey and restricted versions of the Survey of Income and Program Participation. The project investigates the extent to which aggregate trends in wage inequality are the result of increased within-organization job mobility and whether this shift has disproportionately benefited high-income/high-skill workers. It will also account for heterogeneity of outcomes among low-skilled/low-educated workers by exploring under what conditions less-educated workers benefit from internal labor markets and whether these conditions vary systematically by industry, occupation, or region.

New evidence on local minimum wage laws and earnings inequality

Grant Year: 2019

Grant Amount: $50,000

Grant Type: academic

The research team will develop the Washington Merged Longitudinal Administrative Data, which will link demographic information to employment records, and public program administrative data. It will construct households from these state-level data, including the creation of detailed documentation and testing that will allow other scholars to replicate these methodological innovations for analysis of a host of policy interventions on household income and program participation.

Measuring firms’ labor market power in the United States

Grant Year: 2019

Grant Amount: $15,000

Grant Type: doctoral

This project will jointly estimate production mark-ups and labor mark-downs with manufacturing data, and estimate rent-sharing with labor when there are productivity increases in the context of firms' labor market power using Longitudinal Employer-Household data. This dataset allows for heterogeneity analysis that helps understand the types of workers facing the most anticompetitive forces. Further, the research investigates how labor market power varies across geography, industries, and time, and how policymakers can target remedies taking these factors into consideration.

Competitive effects of mergers with regulatory divestiture of assets: Evidence from airline industry

Grant Year: 2019

Grant Amount: $15,000

Grant Type: doctoral

This proposal investigates the effects of mergers in the airline industry upon price, flight frequency, and consumer welfare. Specifically, it will investigate the competitive effects of the merger between US Airways and American Airlines in 2013 and ask whether (or to what extent) the structural remedies required by the U.S. Department of Justice mitigated the expected loss in consumer welfare. In doing so, the investigator seeks to provide a framework for antitrust authorities to approach welfare implications of future airline-related mergers and joint ventures when airport slots are involved.

A unified analysis of declining dynamism and rising mark-ups

Grant Year: 2019

Grant Amount: $15,000

Grant Type: doctoral

Using restricted access, revenue-enhanced data from the Longitudinal Business Database to estimate mark-ups for the full economy, this project seeks to examine whether slowing labor force growth contributes to the decline in new business startups and to increasing mark-ups.

Labor market concentration and welfare

Grant Year: 2019

Grant Amount: $60,000

Grant Type: academic

This project will examine how mergers have affected competition in the U.S. labor market from 1976 to 2014. The researchers will use the U.S. Census Bureau’s Longitudinal Business Database from 1976 to 2014, in conjunction with a new theoretic framework of oligopsony, to measure the effects of mergers on monopsony power and labor market outcomes, including labor’s share of income and welfare. In addition, they will use the Longitudinal Employer Household Dynamics database from 1992 to 2014 to measure how mergers differentially affect low- and high-wage workers, and how these effects differ systematically by characteristics of the worker’s labor market, such as number of firms, and concentration. They will measure job mobility and subsequent earnings losses for those displaced following a merger, thus linking mergers to income inequality and the rich literature on earnings losses of displaced workers.

Funded research

Human Capital

How does economic inequality affect the development of human capital, and to what extent do aggregate trends in human capital explain inequality dynamics?

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Funded research

Macroeconomic Policy

What are the implications of inequality on the long-term stability of our economy and its growth potential?

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Funded research

Market Structure

Are markets becoming less competitive and, if so, why, and what are the larger implications?

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Funded research

The Labor Market

How does the labor market affect equitable growth? How does inequality in turn affect the labor market?

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