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AN NBER PUBLICATION ISSUE: No. 3, September 2013

The Reporter

A free quarterly publication featuring program updates, several summaries of affiliates' research, and news about the NBER
The Productivity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program was founded as the Productivity Program, with Zvi Griliches as the inaugural program director, in 1978. It has more recently expanded to incorporate the vibrant and growing body of research in the affiliated fields of innovation and entrepreneurship. The program benefitted tremendously from Griliches' inspirational leadership, continued by Ernst Berndt after Zvi's untimely death in 1999. We have had the privilege of...

Research Summaries

Author(s): Gary Richardson
My research focuses on banking crises in the Great Depression, the structural flaws in the financial system that propagated the crises, the Federal Reserve's efforts to act as a lender of last resort, and the factors that shaped how policymakers responded to the crisis. Research on these issues involves gathering documents from the archives of the Federal Reserve System as well as collecting information from state regulators and private firms. My emphasis on institutions...
Author(s): Jonathan Skinner
p>When my Dartmouth colleague Dr. John Wennberg drove through Vermont in the late 1960s collecting data on hospital admissions, surgical procedures, and doctor visits, he found something unexpected -- enormous variability in rates of medical care use across seemingly similar Vermont towns. In some school districts, nearly every school child still retained his tonsils, while in other districts, nearly every school child’s tonsils had been removed.   Since 1996,...
Author(s): Paula Stephan
In the United States, approximately half of all PhDs awarded in science and engineering go to the foreign born.1 More than two-thirds of temporary residents who receive PhDs in science and engineering work in a research capacity while in graduate school. The proportion is over 80 percent in engineering. 2 Approximately 60 percent of postdoctoral fellows are in the United States on a temporary visa and approximately 42 percent of those with a doctoral degree working in a...
Author(s): Luis M. Viceira
Introduction Inflation-linked bonds, which in the United States are known as Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (or TIPS), are bonds that pay investors a fixed inflation-adjusted coupon and principal. Their nominal payments adjust automatically with the evolution of a price index describing the cost of a basket of consumer goods such as the Consumer Price Index in the United States. Although the popular press often labels inflation-indexed bonds as "exotic securities...


    The NBER hosted its 36th annual Summer Institute during a three-week period in July. The attendance total reached a new high, 2,449 participants, and the number of first-time participants, 599, was also a record. More than two-thirds of the participants were not affiliated with the NBER. NBER Research Associate Lawrence Summers of Harvard University delivered the Martin Feldstein lecture on the topic of "Economic Possibilities for Our Children." Matthew Gentzkow,...


    Tax Policy and the Economy Volume 27 Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 27, edited by Jeffrey R. Brown is available from the University of Chicago Press in October 2013. Taxation policy was a central part of the policy debates over the "fiscal cliff." Given the importance of fiscal issues, careful empirical research can help inform the policy dialogue. In keeping with the NBER's tradition of carrying out rigorous but policy-relevant research, this volume offers...

Meetings and Conferences, Summer 2010


  • Article
    Economic Fluctuations and Growth Program Meeting The NBER's Program on Economic Fluctuations and Growth met in Cambridge on July 13, 2013. NBER Research Associates Peter Klenow of Stanford University, and Valerie Ramey of the University of California at San Diego organized the meeting. These papers were discussed: Daron Acemoglu, MIT and NBER; Ufuk Akcigit, University of Pennsylvania and NBER; Nicholas Bloom, Stanford University and NBER; and William...


  • Article
    Economics of Digitization The NBER held a conference on the "Economics of Digitization" in Utah on June 6-7, 2013. The organizers were Shane Greenstein of Northwestern University and NBER, Avi Goldfarb of the University of Toronto, and Catherine Tucker of MIT and NBER. The following papers were discussed: Ajay Agrawal and Nicola Lacetera, University of Toronto and NBER; John Horton, oDesk Research ; and Elizabeth Lyons, University of Toronto, "...

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