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The Reporter

A free quarterly publication featuring program updates, several summaries of affiliates' research, and news about the NBER
2022 number1 program report law and economics figure 1
Author(s): Christine Jolls
The Law and Economics Program emphasizes economic analysis of processes within courts, legislatures, and government agencies, as well as of the effects and causes of substantive legal rules in the foundational legal subjects of property law, criminal law, contract law, and tort law. Program members meet twice annually, once at a midyear program meeting and again at the NBER Summer Institute. This article first describes recent research on legal processes and in the...

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Research Summaries

Figure 1 for Peter Blair's summary 2022 number 1 Reporter
Author(s): Peter Q. Blair
When an occupation is licensed by the state, a worker must have a license to legally work for pay. For some occupations, obtaining a license can be as simple as filling out a form and paying a few hundred dollars. In other cases, obtaining a license could require passing an exam, completing years of training, or having a clean criminal record. In the United States and Europe, close to a quarter of the workforce is subject to occupational licensing requirements; by contrast...
Figure for Kenneth Gillingham's summay 2022 number 1
Author(s): Kenneth Gillingham
Spending on transportation is the second-largest category of personal expenditure in the United States, surpassed only by housing. Spending on automobiles is in turn the largest component of transportation expenditures, an amount that is on par with health care and food.1 Moreover, emissions from transportation constitute just under a third of total US greenhouse gas emissions, with light-duty vehicles accounting for almost two-thirds of this total.2 These figures make...
There are about 180 currencies in the world, but a very small number of dominant currencies play an outsize role in international trade, finance, and central bank foreign exchange reserves. In the modern era, the US dollar has a dominant international presence, followed to a lesser extent by the euro and a handful of others. Gita Gopinath and I recently surveyed the literature on dominant currencies.1 The importance of currencies is never more evident than in global trade...
Author(s): Benjamin Jones
Per capita income in the United States today is about 50 times greater than it was in 1820, and life expectancy is decades longer. Amidst these impressive gains, there is a broad appreciation that science and innovation — the discovery and implementation of new ways of doing things — is critical. Yet there is also substantial skepticism about the value of investments in research and development, including those in science. Many R&D investments fail to yield successful...


Anjali Adukia received an Early Career Product Award from the Education Policy Collaborative. Her study “What We Teach about Race and Gender: Representation in Images and Text of Children’s Books,” coauthored with Alex Eble, Emileigh Harrison, Hakizumwami Birali Runesha, and Teodora Szasz, was named one of the 10 most significant education studies of 2021 by the George Lucas Educational Foundation. Joseph Aldy and coauthor Gianfranco Gianfrate won the 2021 FIR-PRI...
Mark Aguiar, Linda Tesar to Lead International Finance and Macroeconomics Program
  Research Associates Mark Aguiar and Linda Tesar will become the codirectors of the NBER’s International Finance and Macroeconomics Program effective April 4.   Aguiar is the Walker Professor of Economics and International Finance at Princeton University. His research spans both open- and closed-economy macroeconomics, including sovereign debt, business cycles in emerging markets, capital taxation, growth, and the microfoundations of consumption and labor...
Pierre-Olivier_Gourinchas Becoming Chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund
Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, professor of economics and the S.K. and Angela Chan Professor of Global Management at the University of California, Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, and director of the NBER International Finance and Macroeconomics (IFM) program, has been named the next Economic Counselor and Director of Research at the International Monetary Fund (IMF). After a transition period, he will assume this position full time and step down from his program director...
Susan Collins Named President of Boston Fed
Susan Collins, a member of the NBER Board of Directors who is currently provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at the University of Michigan, has been named the next president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. She will be a voting member of the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee when she takes up her new role in July.  Collins is an expert on international macroeconomics who taught at Harvard University and Georgetown University before...
The NBER, in partnership with Spelman College, has launched a mentoring program to support faculty at colleges and universities which serve a high percentage of students from minority groups and who are interested in applying for research grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF). This program is supported by an NSF grant for study of the impact of mentoring. Danielle Dickens of Spelman College, Angelino Viceisza of Spelman College and the NBER, and NBER President...

Conferences and Meetings

  • Article
    Economic Impacts of Interjurisdictional Tax Competition An NBER conference on the Economic Impacts of Interjurisdictional Tax Competition took place January 28 online. Research Associates James M. Poterba of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Owen M. Zidar of Princeton University, and David Agrawal of the University of Kentucky organized the meeting, which was supported by Arnold Ventures Grant 20-05306. These researchers’ papers were presented and discussed...

  • Article
    Industrial Organization Members of the NBER’s Industrial Organization Program met February 4–5 in Stanford, CA and on Zoom. Faculty Research Fellows Giulia Brancaccio and Christopher Conlon, both of New York University, and Research Associate Alan T. Sorensen of the University of Wisconsin-Madison organized the meeting. These researchers’ papers were presented and discussed: Benjamin Friedrich, Northwestern University; Martin B. Hackmann, University of California...


  • Article
    Michael Andrews, Aaron Chatterji, Josh Lerner, and Scott Stern, editors We live in an era in which innovation and entrepreneurship seem ubiquitous, particularly in regions like Silicon Valley, Boston, and Research Triangle Park. But many metrics of economic growth, such as productivity growth and business dynamism, have been at best modest in recent years. The resolution of this apparent paradox can be found in dramatic heterogeneity across sectors, with some...

  • Article
    Matthew J. Kotchen, Tatyana Deryugina, and James H. Stock, editors This volume presents six new papers on environmental and energy economics and policy in the United States. Rebecca Davis, Scott Holladay, and Charles Sims analyze recent trends in and forecasts of coal-fired power plant retirements with and without new climate policy. Severin Borenstein and James Bushnell examine the efficiency of pricing for electricity, natural gas, and gasoline. James Archsmith,...
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