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  • 1.
    Aghion, Philippe
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Algan, Yann
    Department of Economics, Sciences Po.
    Cahuc, Pierre
    Ecole Polytechnique.
    Schleifer, Andrei
    Harvard Economics Department.
    Regulation and Distrust2010In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 125, no 3, p. 1015-1049Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 2. Almond, Douglas
    et al.
    Edlund, Lena
    Palme, Mårten
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
    Chernobyl's subclinical legacy: prenatal exposure to radioactive fallout and school outcomes in sweden2009In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 124, no 4, p. 1729-1772Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We use prenatal exposure to Chernobyl fallout in Sweden as a natural experiment inducing variation in cognitive ability. Students born in regions of Sweden with higher fallout performed worse in secondary school, in mathematics in particular. Damage is accentuated within families (i.e., siblings comparison) and among children born to parents with low education. In contrast, we detect no corresponding damage to health outcomes. To the extent that parents responded to the cognitive endowment, we infer that parental investments reinforced the initial Chernobyl damage. From a public health perspective, our findings suggest that cognitive ability is compromised at radiation doses currently considered harmless.

  • 3.
    Besley, Timothy J.
    et al.
    London School of Economics and Canadian Institute for Advanced Research.
    Burchardi, Konrad B.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Ghatak, Maitreesh
    London School of Economics.
    Incentives and the De Soto Effect2012In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 127, no 1, p. 237-282Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper explores the consequences of improving property rights to facilitate the use of fixed assets as collateral, popularly attributed to the influential policy advocate Hernando de Soto. We use an equilibrium model of a credit market with moral hazardto characterize the theoretical effects and also develop a quantitative analysis using data from Sri Lanka. We show that the effects are likely to be nonlinear and heterogeneous by wealth group. They also depend on the extent of competition between lenders. There can be significant increases in profits and reductions in interest rates when credit markets are competitive. However, since these are due to reductions in moral hazard, that is, increased effort, the welfare gains tend to be modest when cost of effort is taken into account. Allowing for an extensive margin where borrowers gain access to the credit market can make these effects larger depending on the underlying wealth distribution.

  • 4.
    Besley, Timothy
    et al.
    London School of Economics.
    Persson, Torsten
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    The Logic of Political Violence2011In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 126, no 3, p. 1411-1445Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article offers a unified approach for studying political violence whether it emerges as repression or civil war. We formulate a model where an incumbent or opposition can use violence to maintain or acquire power to study which political and economic factors drive one-sided or two-sided violence (repression or civil war). The model predicts a hierarchy of violence states from peace via repression to civil war; and suggests a natural empirical approach. Exploiting only within-country variation in the data, we show that violence is associated with shocks that can affect wages and aid. As in the theory, these effects are only present where political institutions are noncohesive.

  • 5.
    Bold, Tessa
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Kaizzi, Kayuki C.
    Svensson, Jakob
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Yanagizawa-Drott, David
    LEMON TECHNOLOGIES AND ADOPTION: MEASUREMENT, THEORY, AND EVIDENCE FROM AGRICULTURAL MARKETS IN UGANDA2017In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 132, no 3, p. 1055-1100Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    To reduce poverty and food insecurity in Africa requires raising productivity in agriculture. Systematic use of fertilizer and hybrid seed is a pathway to increased productivity, but adoption of these technologies remains low. We investigate whether the quality of agricultural inputs can help explain low take-up. Testing modern products purchased in local markets, we find that 30% of nutrient is missing in fertilizer, and hybrid maize seed is estimated to contain less than 50% authentic seeds. We document that such low quality results in low average returns. If authentic technologies replaced these low-quality products, however, average returns are high. To rationalize the findings, we calibrate a learning model using data from our agricultural trials. Because agricultural yields are noisy, farmers' ability to learn about quality is limited and this can help explain the low quality equilibrium we observe, but also why the market has not fully collapsed.

  • 6.
    Burchardi, Konrad B.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies. The Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development, UK; Centre for Economic Policy Research, UK.
    Gulesci, Selim
    Lerva, Benedetta
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Sulaiman, Munshi
    Moral Hazard: Experimental Evidence from Tenancy Contracts2019In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 134, no 1, p. 281-347Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Agricultural productivity is particularly low in developing countries. Output-sharing rules that make farmers less-than-full residual claimants are seen as a potentially important driver of low agricultural productivity. We report results from a field experiment designed to estimate and understand the effects of sharecropping contracts on agricultural input choices, risk-taking, and output. The experiment induced variation in the terms of sharecropping contracts. After agreeing to pay 50% of their output to the landlord, tenants were randomized into three groups: (i) some kept 50% of their output; (ii) others kept 75%; (iii) others kept 50% of output and received a lump-sum payment at the end of their contract, either fixed or stochastic. We find that tenants with higher output shares used more inputs, cultivated riskier crops, and produced 60% more output relative to control. Income or risk exposure have at most a small effect on farm output; the increase in output should be interpreted as an incentive effect of the output-sharing rule. JEL Codes: O12, Q12, Q15.

  • 7.
    Burchardi, Konrad B.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Hassan, Tarek A.
    The Economic Impact of Social Ties: Evidence from German Reunification2013In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 128, no 3, p. 1219-1271Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We use the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 to show that personal relationships which individuals maintain for noneconomic reasons can be an important determinant of regional economic growth. We show that West German households who had social ties to East Germany in 1989 experienced a persistent rise in their personal incomes after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Moreover, the presence of these households significantly affects economic performance at the regional level: it increases the returns to entrepreneurial activity, the share of households who become entrepreneurs, and the likelihood that firms based within a given West German region invest in East Germany. As a result, West German regions that (for idiosyncratic reasons) have a high concentration of households with social ties to the East exhibit substantially higher growth in income per capita in the early 1990s. A one standard deviation rise in the share of households with social ties to East Germany in 1989 is associated with a 4.7 percentage point rise in income per capita over six years. We interpret our findings as evidence of a causal link between social ties and regional economic development. JEL Codes: O10, O43, J61, L14, F20.

  • 8. Cesarini, David
    et al.
    Lindqvist, Erik
    Östling, Robert
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Wallace, Björn
    WEALTH, HEALTH, AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT: EVIDENCE FROM ADMINISTRATIVE DATA ON SWEDISH LOTTERY PLAYERS2016In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 131, no 2, p. 687-738Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We use administrative data on Swedish lottery players to estimate the causal impact of substantial wealth shocks on players' own health and their children's health and developmental outcomes. Our estimation sample is large, virtually free of attrition, and allows us to control for the factors conditional on which the prizes were randomly assigned. In adults, we find no evidence that wealth impacts mortality or health care utilization, with the possible exception of a small reduction in the consumption of mental health drugs. Our estimates allow us to rule out effects on 10-year mortality one sixth as large as the cross-sectional wealth-mortality gradient. In our intergenerational analyses, we find that wealth increases children's health care utilization in the years following the lottery and may also reduce obesity risk. The effects on most other child outcomes, including drug consumption, scholastic performance, and skills, can usually be bounded to a tight interval around zero. Overall, our findings suggest that in affluent countries with extensive social safety nets, causal effects of wealth are not a major source of the wealth-mortality gradients, nor of the observed relationships between child developmental outcomes and household income.

  • 9. Dal Bó, Ernesto
    et al.
    Finan, Frederico
    Folke, Olle
    Persson, Torsten
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Rickne, Johanna
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, The Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI). Uppsala University, Sweden; Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN), Sweden.
    Who Becomes A Politician?2017In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 132, no 4, p. 1877-1914Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Can a democracy attract competent leaders, while attaining broad representation? Economicmodels suggest that free-riding incentives and lower opportunity costs give the less competent a comparative advantage at entering political life. Moreover, if elites have more human capital, selecting on competence may lead to uneven representation. This article examines patterns of political selection among the universe of municipal politicians and national legislators in Sweden, using extraordinarily rich data on competence traits and social background for the entire population. We document four new facts that together characterize an inclusive meritocracy. First, politicians are on average significantly smarter and better leaders than the population they represent. Second, this positive selection is present even when conditioning on family (and hence social) background, suggesting that individual competence is key for selection. Third, the representation of social background, whether measured by parental earnings or occupational social class, is remarkably even. Fourth, there is at best a weak trade-off in selection between competence and social representation, mainly due to strong positive selection of politicians of low (parental) socioeconomic status. A broad implication of these facts is that it is possible for democracy to generate competent and socially representative leadership.

  • 10. Dube, Arindrajit
    et al.
    Kaplan, Ethan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Naidu, Suresh
    Coups, Corporations, and Classified Information2011In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 126, no 3, p. 1375-1409Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We estimate the impact of coups and top-secret coup authorizations on asset prices of partially nationalized multinational companies that stood to benefit from U.S.-backed coups. Stock returns of highly exposed firms reacted to coup authorizations classified as top-secret. The average cumulative abnormal return to a coup authorization was 9% over 4 days for a fully nationalized company, rising to more than 13% over 16 days. Precoup authorizations accounted for a larger share of stock price increases than the actual coup events themselves. There is no effect in the case of the widely publicized, poorly executed Cuban operations, consistent with abnormal returns to coup authorizations reflecting credible private information. We also introduce two new intuitive and easy to implement nonparametric tests that do not rely on asymptotic justifications.

  • 11.
    Eisensee, Thomas
    et al.
    Stockholm University.
    Stromberg, David
    News droughts, news floods, and US disaster relief2007In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 122, no 2, p. 693-728Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper studies the influence of mass media on U. S. government response to approximately 5,000 natural disasters occurring between 1968 and 2002. These disasters took nearly 63,000 lives and affected 125 million people per year. We show that U. S. relief depends on whether the disaster occurs at the same time as other newsworthy events, such as the Olympic Games, which are obviously unrelated to need. We argue that the only plausible explanation of this is that relief decisions are driven by news coverage of disasters and that the other newsworthy material crowds out this news coverage.

  • 12.
    Fredriksson, Peter
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
    Oeckert, Bjoern
    Oosterbeek, Hessel
    LONG-TERM EFFECTS OF CLASS SIZE2013In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 128, no 1, p. 249-285Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article evaluates the long-term effects of class size in primary school. We use rich data from Sweden and exploit variation in class size created by a maximum class size rule. Smaller classes in the last three years of primary school (age 10 to 13) are beneficial for cognitive and noncognitive ability at age 13, and improve achievement at age 16. Most important, we find that smaller classes have positive effects on completed education, wages, and earnings at age 27 to 42. The estimated wage effect is large enough to pass a cost-benefit test.

  • 13.
    Madestam, Andreas
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
    Shoag, Daniel
    Veuger, Stan
    Yanagizawa-Drott, David
    Do Political Protests Matter?: Evidence from the Tea Party Movement2013In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 128, no 4, p. 1633-1685Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Can protests cause political change, or are they merely symptoms of underlying shifts in policy preferences? We address this question by studying the Tea Party movement in the United States, which rose to prominence through coordinated rallies across the country on Tax Day, April 15, 2009. We exploit variation in rainfall on the day of these rallies as an exogenous source of variation in attendance. We show that good weather at this initial, coordinating event had significant consequences for the subsequent local strength of the movement, increased public support for Tea Party positions, and led to more Republican votes in the 2010 midterm elections. Policy making was also affected, as incumbents responded to large protests in their district by voting more conservatively in Congress. Our estimates suggest significant multiplier effects: an additional protester increased the number of Republican votes by a factor well above 1. Together our results show that protests can build political movements that ultimately affect policy making and that they do so by influencing political views rather than solely through the revelation of existing political preferences.

  • 14.
    Nyberg, Sten
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
    Lindbeck, Assar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Weibull, Jörgen
    Social Norms and Economic Incentives in the Welfare State1999In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 114, no 1, p. 1-35Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper analyzes the interplay between social norms and economic incentives in the context of work decisions in the modern welfare state. We assume that to live off one's own work is a social norm, and that the larger the population share adhering to this norm, the more intensely it is felt by the individual. Individuals face two choices: one economic, whether to work or live off public transfers; and one political, how large the transfer should be. The size of the transfer and the intensity of the social norm are determined endogenously in equilibrium.

  • 15.
    Svensson, Jakob
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    Björkman, Martina
    Bocconi University.
    Power to the People: Evidence from a Randomized Field Experiment of a Community-Based Monitoring Project in Uganda2009In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 124, no 2, p. 735-769Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper presents a randomized field experiment on community-based monitoring of public primary health care providers in Uganda. Through two rounds of village meetings, localized nongovernmental organizations encouraged communities to be more involved with the state of health service provision and strengthened their capacity to hold their local health providers to account for performance. A year after the intervention, treatment communities are more involved in monitoring the provider, and the health workers appear to exert higher effort to serve the community. We document large increases in utilization and improved health outcomes—reduced child mortality and increased child weight—that compare favorably to some of the more successful community-based intervention trials reported in the medical literature.                 

  • 16.
    Åkerman, Anders
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
    Gaarder, Ingvil
    Mogstad, Magne
    The Skill Complementarity of Broadband Internet2015In: Quarterly Journal of Economics, ISSN 0033-5533, E-ISSN 1531-4650, Vol. 4, no 130, p. 1781-1824Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Does adoption of broadband internet in firms enhance labor productivity and increase wages? Is this technological change skill biased or factor neutral? We combine several Norwegian data sets to answer these questions. A public program with limited funding rolled out broadband access points and provides plausibly exogenous variation in the availability and adoption of broadband internet in firms. Our results suggest that broadband internet improves (worsens) the labor market outcomes and productivity of skilled (unskilled) workers. We explore several possible explanations for the skill complementarity of broadband internet. We find suggestive evidence that broadband adoption in firms complements skilled workers in executing nonroutine abstract tasks, and substitutes for unskilled workers in performing routine tasks. Taken together, our findings have important implications for the ongoing policy debate over government investment in broadband infrastructure to encourage productivity and wage growth.

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