Recently I have studied the role of Information Technologies in shaping behavior: be it the publishing of a book on awareness and action towards a cleaner and healthier environment, or the availability of computers and internet access on occupational choice and labor outcomes of Argentinean teens (upper row). Currently, I am working on the gender unemployment gap, exploring why it is the case that the male unemployment rate rises more than the female unemployment rate during recessions in the United States (bottom row).

 

Ongoing Research

Demonstrators outside of a polluting factory on the first Earth Day, 1970.

Silent Spring

The role of information shocks on the demand for environmental regulation

Protecting the environment is often plagued by collective action problems. This paper dwells on whether public information can influence demand in the population, and, if so, what are the relevant channels. I exploit the publishing in 1962 of the influential environmental science book Silent Spring and the availability of U.S. congressional roll-call votes and census data.

High-school students receiving their new laptops, Argentina, 2010-2015.

Conectar Igualdad

Effect of i.t. on teen labor outcomes and superior educatioN

Not much is know about the effects of information technology on the economy. In this paper, I take advantage of a program that distributed free laptops to kids enrolled in Public High-School. I look at effects in labor market outcomes and career choice. I also explore the role of social networks as a relevant channel.  This is based in Argentina and Uruguay. 

Working men and working women.

Gender Unemploy. Gap

WHY IT IS MORE VOLATILE FOR MEN ACROSS THE BUSINESS CYCLE

It is a stylized fact that the male Unemployment Rate is more volatile than the female Unemployment rate across the Business Cycle: it rises more in recessions. This happens even after controlling for education levels, age, occupation, or industry. I am currently exploring different hypothesis as to why this happens.

Published Work

"No more Banks!", protesters after the devaluation in Argentina, 2002 (2001 crisis)

A binding contract.

 

Banking Sector

EFFICIENCY AND MARKET POWER IN THE FINANCIAL MARKET: EVIDENCE FROM ARGENTINA

The 2001/2002 period involved bank run, strong depreciation of the peso, and a policy that completely froze bank accounts and forbade withdrawals from U.S. dollar-denominated accounts in the country. In the following years, the sector faced big restructuring, and the number of players decreased, giving rise to the question: has the crisis affected the relationship between efficiency and market power in the financial sector? The answer was yes, but with heterogeneity across different types of banks (public vs private, big vs small). - Asosiacion Argentina de Economia Politica (2011), awarded Young Researcher Award.

Natural disaster risks in continental United States. (alertsystems.com)

Moving to Higher Ground

The Effect of Natural Disasters on Economic Activity in US Counties: A Century of Data

Major natural disasters such as Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy cause numerous fatalities, and destroy property and infrastructure. In any year, the U.S experiences dozens of smaller natural disasters as well. We construct a 90 year panel data set that includes the universe of natural disasters in the United States from 1920 to 2010. By exploiting spatial and temporal variation, we study how these shocks affected migration rates, home prices and local poverty rates. The most severe disasters increase out migration rates and lower housing prices, especially in areas at particular risk of disaster activity, but milder disasters have little effect.

Coase Theorem

THE POLITICAL COASE THEOREM: EXPERIMENTAL EVIDENCE

The Political Coase Theorem (PCT) states that, in the absence of transaction costs, agents should agree to implement efficient policies regardless of the distribution of bargaining power among them. This paper uses a laboratory experiment to explore how commitment problems undermine the validity of the PCT. Overall, the results support theoretical predictions. Commitment issues matter.  - Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 103 (2014), joint with S. Galiani and G. Torrens