Monthly Archives: April 2010

Turning Points

I’m fortunate to have been preselected as the ALP candidate for the federal seat of Fraser (AAP report here). I haven’t been discussing the preselection much on this blog, but it’s been the main thing occupying my attention over the … Continue reading

Posted in Australian Politics | 29 Comments

France Wins Clark Medal Again

Congratulations to Esther Duflo, French-born development economist extraordinaire and winner of this year’s John Bates Clark medal for the best US economist under 40. If you’ve never heard of Esther, check out her academic website or the Poverty Action Lab … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Of Becker and Mills, Picasso and Friedman

I was interviewed recently for the newsletter of the Economic Sociology Australia society.

Posted in Economics Generally

Did the Tampa Stop Beazley Becoming PM?

Writing on InsideStory, Peter Brent argues: But it is not clear that boat people really had much effect on the election result. When the Tampa arrived, the Howard government had already been steadily improving its opinion poll position from the … Continue reading

Posted in Australian Politics | 1 Comment

Slow degrees, school vs jail, and cash 4 class

Three new economics papers offer interesting findings on important facets of education policy. Increasing Time to Baccalaureate Degree in the United States by John Bound, Michael Lovenheim, Sarah Turner Time to completion of the baccalaureate degree has increased markedly in … Continue reading

Posted in Economics of Education | 3 Comments

Talking Sin

My Wryside Economics segment on ABC Radio National’s Life Matters program yesterday was on sin taxes. If you’re curious to catch up on it, you can listen to it here.

Posted in Health economics, Tax

The Future Beaters

Inspired by the Netflix contest, Nicholas Gruen and Anthony Goldbloom have created Kaggle, a site where would-be predictors go head-to-head to build a model that best forecasts the future. You can read more about it at Club Troppo, and at … Continue reading

Posted in Prediction Markets | 1 Comment

Risky Business

On 22 April, I’m launching a project at the ANU Crawford School titled ‘New Social Policy Approaches for Sharing Risk’. More information here, including a flyer.

Posted in Coming Events

A tired old story

My op-ed today is on the economics of sleep. Full text over the fold.

Posted in Health economics, Labour Economics | 1 Comment

Everyone thinks they’re middle-class

Rob Bray points out to me some interesting data from 1999, in which Peter Saunders (SPRC, UNSW) asked respondents to place themselves in an income decile. Of course, 1/10th of the population falls in each decile, so if people are … Continue reading

Posted in Inequality | 5 Comments

Prediction markets, where art thou?

I’ve been writing for nearly a decade (much of it with Justin Wolfers) about the predictive power of election betting markets. So why is it that now I’m running for ALP preselection in Fraser, none of the election betting websites … Continue reading

Posted in Australian Politics | 6 Comments

Top Incomes in Australia, Updated

Some years ago, I published a paper with Tony Atkinson looking at trends in Australian top incomes since 1921. We’ve now updated the results to the 2007-08 tax year (the latest available from the ATO). Here’s the Excel spreadsheet. The … Continue reading

Posted in Inequality

Social Mobility in China

Cathy Gong, Xin Meng and I have a new paper out, looking at intergenerational mobility in urban China. After making a bunch of adjustments to the data, we find a strikingly high intergenerational elasticity (implying a very low level of … Continue reading

Posted in Inequality | 1 Comment

Mexican antipoverty program might work in the US too

Don Arthur alerts me to a new report from MDRC (the organisation that administers many of the US randomised trials) on Opportunity NYC, a conditional cash transfer program in New York city that’s based loosely on the Mexican Progresa/Oportunidades program. … Continue reading

Posted in Economics of Education, Economics of the Family, Health economics | 1 Comment

What’s the Evidence on Evidence Based Policy?

Last year, the Productivity Commission ran an event on the topic ‘Strengthening Evidence-based Policy in the Australian Federation’, of which I was one of the participants (my contribution was titled: ‘Evidence-based policy: summon the randomistas?’). The PC has now produced … Continue reading

Posted in Australian Politics, Economics Generally, Randomisation | 4 Comments