Research

Job Market Paper:

Abstract: Public transit has often been proposed as a solution to the spatial mismatch hypothesis but the link between public transit accessibility and employment has not been firmly established in the literature. Los Angeles provides an interesting case study – as the city has transformed from zero rail infrastructure before the 1990s to a network of 103 Metro stations in 2016 consisting of subway, light rail, and bus rapid transit servicing diverse neighborhoods. I use panel data on tracts, treating route placement as endogenous, which is then instrumented by the distance from the centroid of each tract in LA to a hypothetical Metro route. Overall, I find proximity to Metro stations increases labor force participation and employment for residents, which is robust to using both a binary and continuous measure of distance. Additionally, I find evidence that increased job density in neighborhoods near new transit stations is contributing to the employment increase.

Published Papers:

With David Neumark

Abstract: We study the effects of the size of older cohorts on labor force participation and wages of older workers in the United States. We use panel data on states, treating the age structure of the population as endogenous, owing to migration. When older cohorts (50–59 or 60–69) are large relative to a young cohort (aged 16–24), the evidence fits the relative supply hypothesis. However, when older cohorts are large relative to 25- to 49-year-olds, the evidence points to a relative demand shift. Thus, we need a more nuanced view than simply whether the older cohort is large relative to the population: the cohort that they are large relative to matters.

Working Papers:

Does Stereotype Threat Affect Beliefs and Preferences More than Outcomes?

Abstract: I examine the effects of stereotype threat under competition. This experiment is novel in that it provides subjects with the magnitude of actual performance gender gaps using the same task drawn from an identical population as a stereotype threat treatment. In addition, this is the first study that asks subjects about the magnitude of a perceived gender gap in the tasks, allowing us to analyze situations where there are differences between perceived gap in scores and the actual gap in scores. Finally, this design ties together literature on competition and stereotype threat to determine if stereotype threat is stronger under competition. I do not find convincing evidence of stereotype threat in either competitive or non-competitive settings. However, I find that providing information on gender gaps changes the subjects' preferences towards the tasks that their gender is perceived to perform relatively better in.

With David Neumark

Abstract: Many U.S. cities have recently increased their minimum wages, especially in California. We report results from carrying out analyses of the impacts of these city minimum wages, as specified in a pre-analysis plan (PAP) that was registered on Open Science Framework prior to the release of data covering two years of minimum wage increases. In this working paper, we report results updating the data through 2018; our final paper will add another year of evidence on minimum wages. For employment effects, in our analysis of California cities we find a hint of negative employment effects, but the estimates are neither robust nor statistically strong. The analysis of local minimum wages nationally also provides some evidence of disemployment effects, although it is not statistically significant. For distributional effects, our city-specific analyses do not provide clear evidence one way or the other, except for evidence of increases in the shares poor or low-income in Santa Clara. In our panel data analyses of all California or national local minimum wages, there is evidence pointing to declines in the shares poor or low-income, although at least for California the data indicate that the shares poor or low-income were declining before local minimum wages took effect (or were increased). More definitive results await our next update.