NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

The Data Revolution and Economic Analysis

Liran Einav, Jonathan D. Levin

NBER Working Paper No. 19035
Issued in May 2013
NBER Program(s):Aging, Economics of Education, Environment and Energy Economics, Economic Fluctuations and Growth, Health Care, Health Economics, Industrial Organization, Labor Studies, Public Economics, Productivity, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship

Many believe that "big data" will transform business, government and other aspects of the economy. In this article we discuss how new data may impact economic policy and economic research. Large-scale administrative datasets and proprietary private sector data can greatly improve the way we measure, track and describe economic activity. They also can enable novel research designs that allow researchers to trace the consequences of different events or policies. We outline some of the challenges in accessing and making use of these data. We also consider whether the big data predictive modeling tools that have emerged in statistics and computer science may prove useful in economics.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w19035

Published: The Data Revolution and Economic Analysis, Liran Einav, Jonathan Levin. in Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 14, Lerner and Stern. 2014

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