Evidence-Based Economics

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2013 Cohort

Cagala_kleinDr. Tobias Cagala

University Affiliation: FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg

EBE Affiliate: October 2013 - November 2015

Placement: Deutsche Bundesbank

Research Interests: Behavioral Economics, Public Economics

Dissertation: Essays on Cooperation, Choice under Risk, and Compliance

Tobias's Dissertation presents insights into decision making in social interactions and under risk. The topics of his four essays are: social interactions between individuals cooperating to finance public goods and a rent-extracting administrator, the influence of complexity on decisions under risk, intertemporal spillovers of enforcement on compliance and the effectiveness of commitment requests in promoting compliance. His findings illustrate the influence of context on decisions. The mix of laboratory and field experiments in his research suggest two complementary ways to study interactions of treatment effects with observable and unobservable factors.

Dr. AnastaDrivasia Driva

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Fellow: October 2013 - May 2017

Placement: Swiss Re

Research Interests: Applied Microeconometrics, Health, Education, Behavioral and Experimental Economics

Dissertation: Empirical Essays on Human Capital Investments in Health and Education

Anastasia’s dissertation aims to shed light on the importance of reforms and interventions in health and education. The individual chapters look into three different settings in Germany, where she combines theoretical foundations with statistical tools and data to empirically investigate questions of high policy-interest that have been neglected by the literature so far. The first chapter investigates the impact of compulsory health insurance on mortality as introduced in 1884 by Chancellor Bismarck. Using novel and unique data, the authors find that after the introduction of the health insurance plan, mortality for blue collar workers decreases significantly. A potential channel for this finding could be access to information with regards to hygiene passed on by doctors. The second chapter looks into financial literacy and gender stereotypes among teenagers. The results indicate that there is an association between financial knowledge and gender stereotypes related to household finance. Additionally, the authors find that males’ beliefs are more biased towards their own gender. Lastly, in her third chapter Anastasia studies the effect eligibility for earlier childcare entry has on long-term health outcomes. Even though the findings do not hint towards a causal or significant effect, the descriptive evidence available suggests that there is a selection effect where better-off families send their children to kindergarten earlier (Cornelissen et al. 2016).

Dr. ThomFackleras Fackler

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Fellow: October 2013 - January 2018

Placement: ifo Institute

Research Interests: Economics of Innovation, Industrial Organization, Applied Econometrics

Dissertation: The Effects of Migration, Competition, and Patents on Innovation

Thomas' dissertation explores policy-relevant determinants of innovation. The first chapter studies the effects of emigration of high-skilled workers on innovation, showing in an analysis of the citation network that the loss in human capital in origin countries can be compensated by knowledge flows from the technologically more advanced destination countries. The second chapter investigates the relationship between competition and the type of corporate R&D and provides evidence, based on a text analysis of firms' patents, that more intense import competition leads to more incremental innovation. The third chapter focuses on the incentive effects of intellectual property rights, finding empirical support for a detrimental effect of patent protection on follow-on innovation.

GlogowskyDr. Ulrich Glogowsky

University Affiliation: FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg

EBE Affiliate: October 2013 - November 2015

Placement: Assistant Professor, Seminar for Economic Policy, LMU Munich

Research Interests: Public Economics, Behavioral Economics, Policy Evaluation, Applied Econometrics

Dissertation: Essays in Evidence-Based Economics

Ulrich's thesis studies a range of topics in public economics. Chapters 1 and 2 present field experiments that evaluate the effectiveness of policy interventions to increase compliance with rules. Both chapters incorporate different insights about people from behavioral economics into the analysis of compliance. Chapter 3 estimates behavioral responses to the German inheritance and gift tax using a quasi-experimental bunching estimator. The results of this chapter inform the heated debate on whether wealth transfer taxation is an appropriate countermeasure to the perpetuation of inequality. Chapter 4 analyzes the social interactions between individuals who cooperate to finance a public good and a rent-extracting administrator in the laboratory. The common link that ties the chapters together is the experimental or quasi-experimental analysis of decision making under specific rules that are determined by an institution. Going beyond pure application, the dissertation also strives to add to the methodology for causal analysis by presenting a novel identification approach that enables the examination of social interactions in the laboratory.

Dr. RaphGuberael Guber

University Affiliation: LMU Munich & Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy

EBE Affiliate: October 2013 - January 2018

Placement: Assistant Professor, Munich Center for Economics of Aging

Research Interests: Empirical Health Economics

Dissertation: Essays in Applied Econometrics and Health Economics

Raphael's thesis consists of four self-contained chapters that cover the fields of health and labor economics. A common theme across all chapters is the application and advancement of methods that estimate causal effects. In the first chapter, he applies a difference-in-difference strategy to estimate the causal effect of forced right-hand writing of left-handers on labor market outcomes. The second chapter proposes a method to eliminate sample selection bias in the twin birth instrument, which is often used to instrument fertility decisions in various settings. The third chapter relies on reduced form estimation to study the long-run consequences of fertility and its interaction with labor market participation on mothers' mortality in old age. While the previous chapters are based on natural experiments, the fourth chapter employs a laboratory experiment to investigate whether insuring against losses makes individuals overconfident in their own ability relative to others.

Dr. MaximiHörlliane Hörl

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Fellow: October 2013 - November 2016

Placement: Munich Re

Research Interests: Health Insurance Demand, Applied Econometrics

Dissertation: Empirical Essays on Health Insurance Demand

Motivated by recent discussions on behavioral barriers individuals face when choosing and using health insurance, Maximiliane’s dissertation contains three empirical essays with different perspectives on health insurance demand exploring heterogeneity related to knowledge and preferences and considering recent developments in the U.S. health insurance markets. In the first paper, Maximiliane investigates education-induced heterogeneity in health insurance demand for the Medicare population. The second paper explores for the non-elderly in how far financial and health insurance literacy as well as risk preferences are related to the choice between health insurance plans. In the third paper, the authors provide insights into how these factors as well as political preferences can constitute barriers to health insurance coverage in context of the ACA. In addition, the fourth paper sheds light on the formation of preferences investigating the impact of a shock in childhood.

sablinaDr. Maria Karmeliuk

(LMU Munich)

Maria holds an M.Sc. in Economics from the University of Bonn and a B.Sc. in Economics from Novosibirsk State University in Russia. Her main research interests are Behavioral Economics, Experimental Economics, Microeconomic Theory, Game Theory and Industrial Organization. She graduated in 2020.




Dr. Flkraemerorentin Krämer

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Affiliate: October 2013 - May 2017

Research Interests: Behavioral Theory, Experimental Economics, Decision Theory, Industrial Organization

Dissertation: Morals, Markets, and Malleability: Three Essays in Behavioral Economics

Florentin's dissertation explores the hypothesis that behavior may not be rational in a canonical sense. Individuals appear to be willing to pay substantial amounts for animal welfare, offer positive amounts of money to completely anonymous experimental subjects if they can get the same good without paying anything, and are sensitive to the context in which a decision is made. All three findings violate the tenets of neoclassical economics, which is built on self-interest and stable preferences. The first two chapters show that behavior is not solely driven by selfish interests. Instead, it seems that other humans, and even non-human animals, can be part of individuals’ utility functions. The third chapter addresses a line of research that has received a lot of attention in recent years and is connected by the stipulation that preferences may not be stable across choice contexts. I contribute to this literature by providing an empirical test of context dependence and showing that in the area of speed dating, decision-making is guided by relative thinking.

Dr. Rainer Kotschy

kotschy-alumnusUniversity Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Fellow: October 2013 - July 2018

Placement: Postdoctoral Researcher - LMU Munich

Research Interests: Demography, Health, Labor Economics, Inequality, and Long-Run Development

Dissertation: Long-Run Determinants of Economic Performance and Institutional Quality: Evidence from Demographic and Political Change

“Why are some countries so much richer than others?” This question stands at the core of research on the long-run determinants and processes of socioeconomic development. Rainer’s dissertation extends and complements this field of research along several dimensions. The first part of the dissertation sheds new light on the non-monotonic effect of population aging on economic performance and identifies education as a powerful force in compensating the negative consequences of demographic change. It moreover demonstrates a pivotal role of improvements in population health for subsequent economic performance in terms of output growth, average wages, educational attainment, and income inequality. The second part of the dissertation uncovers important interactions between economic performance, inequality, and political institutions in shaping institutional quality. In particular, the analysis provides novel evidence that the beneficial effect of democracy on the quality of economic institutions may be eroded by excessive inequality.

Dr. KonstLucksantin Lucks

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Affiliate: October 2013 - November 2016

Placement: Consultant, McKinsey

Research Interests: Behavioral and Experimental Finance, Field Experiments, Decisions under Risk, Discounting, Investment Decisions, Self Control and Nudges

 Disssertation: Essays in Behavioral and Experimental Finance

Motivated by psychological research, Konstantin's dissertation experimentally investigates drivers of financial decision making outside of the 'rational' expected utility framework. The first two chapters explore the role of self-control in financial decision making experiments and the third chapter explores peer effects. In chapter 1, the authors find that reduced self-control can contribute to overpricing in experimental asset markets. In chapter 2, he explores the role of reduced self-control on individual investment decisions, such as Myopic Loss Aversion. Based on a lab-in-the-field experiment in German lower tier high schools, chapter 3 looks at peer effects – the impact of social influence on risky decision making – and in particular explores the role of social distance for differences in such effects.

Dr. MarkNaglerus Nagler

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Affiliate: October 2013 - January 2018

Placement: Assistant Professor, Seminar for Comparative Economics, LMU Munich

Research Interests: Economics of Innovation, Labor/Education Economics

Disssertation: Patents, Spillovers, and the Allocation of Talent - Microeconometric Perspectives on the Knowledge Economy

Markus‘ dissertation sheds light on two important foundations of the knowledge economy. In the first part, the dissertation studies the dynamic impacts of patents on subsequent innovation. Using setups from the United States, it shows that both a blocking effect of patents through their monopoly property and an enablement effect through disclosure of technical information are empirically relevant. In the second part, Markus’ dissertation studies productivity determinants of so-called ''knowledge workers’’. Using institutional setups in Germany and the United States, it shows that labor mobility of scientists increases their productivity and that outside labor-market opportunities at career start are strong determinants of teachers’ effectiveness in raising students’ test scores.

Dr. Kschüssleratharina Schüssler

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Fellow: October 2013 - January 2018

Research Interests: Behavioral Economics, Experimental Economics, Organizational Economics

Dissertation: On Traits, Attributes, and Incentives – Motivating Heterogeneous Agents

Motivated by developments in personality psychology as well as voices raised in economic research stressing the importance of integrating individual heterogeneity into economic research to further economists’ understanding of incentives, Katharina’s dissertation consists of four essays exploring the influence of different aspects of individual heterogeneity in economic situations. In Chapter one, the general point is made that individual heterogeneity in traits and preferences might give rise to complementarities for human-resource management (HRM) practices, which in turn constitute an explanation for persistent productivity differences between seemingly similar firms. In contrast, Chapters two to four focus on different facets of individual heterogeneity and their impact on various economic outcomes: In Chapter two, the role of intrinsic reciprocity for dynamic contracting is investigated. Chapter three focuses on the role of individual heterogeneity in personality traits on contribution behavior in a public goods context, and Chapter four explores the role of heterogeneity in beliefs on competitiveness. To provide a comprehensive picture, the chapters make use of various methods including theoretical modeling, econometric analysis of survey data, and laboratory experiments.

Dr. Mark WWestcottestcott

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Fellow: October 2013 - January 2018

Placement: Vivid Economics

Dissertation: Essays on Racial Animus

Mark's thesis is concerned with expressions of prejudicial attitudes towards racial minorities. The first two chapters of the thesis link expressions of anti-minority sentiment to historic factors, providing evidence on both continuity and change in racial preferences. The first chapter (joint with David Schindler) examines the impact of African American soldiers in the U.K. on Britons’ racial attitudes.The setting provides quasi-experimental variation in the potential for contact between the local, white, population and black soldiers. It finds evidence in favour of Allport's contact hypothesis: areas of the U.K. where more African American soldiers were posted exhibit more tolerant attitudes to minorities into this century. The second essay (joint with Davide Cantoni and Felix Hagemeister) shows that municipalities in Germany with high vote shares for the NSDAP (Nazi) party in the late 1920s/early 1930s had also higher vote shares for the newly xenophobic ‘Alternative für Deutschland’ (AfD) party in the 2016/17 state elections. The third essay uses a large administrative dataset to examine taste-based discrimination in New York.

wissmannDr. Daniel Wissmann

University Affiliation: LMU Munich

EBE Fellow: October 2013 - January 2018

Research Interests: Labour Economics, Migration Economics, Political Economy, Economic History

Dissertation: Essays on Skills, Wages and Inequality in Germany

Income inequality has increased in almost all OECD countries over the last three decades (OECD 2014) and that increase is mostly driven by increasing inequality in labor incomes (Piketty and Saez 2014). In his dissertation Daniel studies various aspects related to the question of what drives inequality in labor incomes. In his first chapter (“The State of the German Labor Market”), he uses some of the best data available to provide an evidence-based, up-to-date description of recent wage structure and employment trends in Germany. In his second chapter (“Skill Premiums and the Supply of Young Workers” joint with Albrecht Glitz) he asks whether changes in the supply of skill, i.e. for instance the number of college graduates or workers with vocational training, can help to explain wage inequality, in particular at the lower end of the distribution. His third chapter (“Compensating Differentials and the Introduction of Smoking Bans”) starts from the idea that up to 15% of wage inequality might be due to compensating differentials (Sorkin 2016), i.e. the extra pay associated with jobs that are more dangerous or unpleasant than others. This argument, however, relies on indirect evidence while direct evidence for such compensating differentials has been largely missing. He fills this gap by exploiting the introduction of smoking bans in Germany looking at wages of waiters in the hospitality industry as a natural experiment to provide quasi-experimental evidence for compensating differentials in the labor market.