Department of Economics
6106 Rockefeller Hall
Hanover, NH 03755
NBER Program Affiliations:
NBER Affiliation: Faculty Research Fellow
Institutional Affiliation: Dartmouth College
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|April 2019||The Returns to Early-life Interventions for Very Low Birth Weight Children|
with Samantha Gold, Justine S. Hastings: w25753
We use comprehensive administrative data from Rhode Island to measure the impact of early-life interventions for low birth weight newborns on later-life outcomes. We use a regression discontinuity design based on the 1,500-gram threshold for Very Low Birth Weight (VLBW) status. We show that threshold crossing causes more intense in-hospital care, in line with prior studies. Threshold crossing also causes a 0.34 standard deviation increase in test scores in elementary and middle school, a 17.1 percentage point increase in the probability of college enrollment, and $66,997 decrease in social program expenditures by age 14. We explore potential mechanisms driving these impacts.
|January 2019||The Causal Impact of Removing Children from Abusive and Neglectful Homes|
with Anthony Bald, Justine S. Hastings, Margarita Machelett: w25419
This paper measures impacts of removing children from families investigated for abuse or neglect. We use removal tendencies of child protection investigators as an instrument. We focus on young children investigated before age 6 and find that removal significantly increases test scores and reduces grade repetition for girls. There are no detectable impacts for boys. This pattern of results does not appear to be driven by heterogeneity in pre-removal characteristics, foster placements, or the type of schools attended after removal. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that development of abused and neglected girls is more responsive to home removal.
|January 2014||Advertising and Environmental Stewardship: Evidence from the BP Oil Spill|
with Lint Barrage, Justine Hastings: w19838
This paper explores whether private markets can incentivize environmental stewardship. We examine the consumer response to the 2010 BP oil spill and test how BP's investment in the 2000-2008 “Beyond Petroleum” green advertising campaign affected this response. We find evidence consistent with consumer punishment: BP station margins and volumes declined by 2.9 cents per gallon and 4.2 percent, respectively, in the month after the spill. However, pre-spill advertising significantly dampened the price response, and may have reduced brand switching by BP stations. These results indicate that firms may have incentives to engage in green advertising without investments in environmental stewardship.