Timothy G. Conley

Department of Economics
Social Science Centre, Room 4071
London, Ontario, Canada, N6A 5C2
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NBER Working Papers and Publications

July 2015Social Interactions, Mechanisms, and Equilibrium: Evidence from a Model of Study Time and Academic Achievement
with Nirav Mehta, Ralph Stinebrickner, Todd Stinebrickner: w21418
We develop and estimate a model of student study time on a social network. The model is designed to exploit unique data collected in the Berea Panel Study. Study time data allow us to quantify an intuitive mechanism for academic social interactions: own study time may depend on friend study time in a heterogeneous manner. Social network data allow us to embed study time and resulting academic achievement in an estimable equilibrium framework. We develop a specification test that exploits the equilibrium nature of social interactions and use it to show that novel study propensity measures mitigate econometric endogeneity concerns.
July 2005Inference with "Difference in Differences" with a Small Number of Policy Changes
with Christopher Taber: t0312
Difference in differences methods have become very popular in applied work. This paper provides a new method for inference in these models when there are a small number of policy changes. This situation occurs in many implementations of these estimators. Identification of the key parameter typically arises when a group "changes" some particular policy. The asymptotic approximations that are typically employed assume that the number of cross sectional groups, N, times the number of time periods, T, is large. However, even when N or T is large, the number of actual policy changes observed in the data is often very small. In this case, we argue that point estimators of treatment effects should not be thought of as being consistent and that the standard methods that researchers use to perform ...
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