24 August 2015

The Methods Lectures, 2015

What Economists Can Learn from Machine Learning

Susan Athey of Stanford University and the NBER discusses the benefits to economics of using machine learning methodology to deal with heterogeneity, and the benefits to computer science of the social sciences' approach to causal inference.

New NBER Research

1 September 2015

Long Run Health Repercussions of Drought Shocks:
Evidence from South African Homelands

Exploiting almost 40 years of quasi-random variation in South African droughts, Taryn Dinkelman finds that drought exposure in infancy raises later-life disability rates by between 3.5 to 5.2 percent, with larger effects for men than women.

31 August 2015

Long Run Trends in Unemployment and Labor Force Participation in China

Shuaizhang Feng, Yingyao Hu, and Robert Moffitt using a nationally representative household survey in China suggest an unemployment rate for the nation that is substantially different from the official rate, and that exhibits greater variation over time. The fluctuations in the survey-based rate are much consistent with what is known about China’s labor market and how it has changed over time in response to structural changes and other significant events.
More Research

NBER in the News

Economics Has a Math Problem
September 1, 2015
The Research

The economics of secession
The Washington Post
August 31, 2015
Read the Research

Democracy Is Top Economic Growth Strategy
Investor's Business Daily
August 27, 2015
Read the Research

View all news

New Innovation Policy Volume
Examines the Impact of
High-skilled Immigrants

High-skilled immigration to the United States is the focus of a new volume of Innovation Policy and the Economy. The 15th volume in a series, it includes research on the impact of immigration to the United States of Russian mathematicians as the Soviet Union collapsed and the changing nature of postdoctoral positions in science departments, which are disproportionately held by immigrant researchers. Other studies examine the role of US firms in high-skilled immigration and the strong growth in global scientific and technological knowledge production, which has fostered cross-border collaborations for U.S. scientists. Available from The University of Chicago Press.

Frequently Requested Items


Calls for Papers

There are currently no open calls for papers.
Follow us on
Twitter RSS facebook

On the News

Developments in China Not So Shocking

NBER research associates Lant Pritchett and Lawrence H. Summers, in a working paper posted on this site last October, wrote that there were substantial reasons that China and India might grow much less rapidly than was commonly anticipated. History, the two Harvard Kennedy School professors pointed out, teaches that abnormally rapid growth is rarely persistent, and that regression to the mean is the empirically most salient feature of economic growth. They suggested that salient characteristics of China—high levels of state control and corruption along with high measures of authoritarian rule—made a discontinuous decline in growth even more likely than general experience would suggest.

NBER China Studies Focus on Labor Issues,
Science and Engineering, Economic Policy

Richard B. Freeman of Harvard University and the NBER discusses China's emergence as a global player in science and technology, the evolution of its labor force, US-China affinities, and the range of NBER China research. See a selection of that research, by Freeman and others.

New in the NBER Digest

Great Recession Damaged Neighborhood Job Networks

Residential neighborhood networks, which are valuable resources for job seekers, particularly for lower-income displaced workers, were substantially weakened during and after the Great Recession, according to research reported in the August edition of the NBER Digest. Other research in this month's Digest probes the effect of consumer inattention on insurance pricing, the performance of tax-efficient mutual funds, the relationship between industrial firms' insider connections and worker safety in China, and the Great Recession's enduring impact on employment.

Download the PDF
or Read online

NBER Reporter

How Powerful Are Fiscal Multipliers?

Recent analysis suggests that a $1 increase in government spending or decrease in taxes stimulates $1.50 to $2 in output during recessions, but only about $0.50 during expansions, Alan Auerbach and Yuriy Gorodnichenko write in the current issue of the NBER's quarterly Reporter. Also featured in this issue are reports on the rising interest in macroprudential policies, the democracy/development relationship, the economics of happiness, and the effects of early childhood interventions.

See the full edition in pdf format
or Read online

NBER Videos

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email:

Contact Us