Are economics papers too long?

I am going to try to keep this short. A recent Wall Street Journal article addresses the observation that academic papers in economics have increased in length over the years. Below is a graph that clearly shows this trend. In 1970 the average length of economics papers in “top journals” was about 16 pages. In…

Refugees and Crime: What is the Evidence?

It is hardly a surprise to anyone that the idea of some sort of a link between refugee resettlement and crime is pervasive. It was a central topic of debate in the 2016 US election. Due to the center stage of this topic, within the first week of President Trump’s term, the US refugee resettlement…

“What do you do?” “I’m a development economist”

There is a small Twitter fad going around recently, it goes something like this: “What do you do?” “I’m an economist.” “Oh, cool! I’ve been thinking about making some investments, any advise?” “I’m not that kind of economist. I’m a development economist who studies poverty alleviation in Africa.” “Ah, okay. I’ve never been to that…

Mini-Summaries from MIEDC 2018

A couple weekends ago, my department (Applied Economics at the University of Minnesota) hosted the Midwest International Economic Development Conference (MIEDC). It is a smaller conference with tremendous quality of presentations. Despite this, many are not able to attend the conference or even all of the sessions. As a service to those interested, a few…

The Impact of Christian Theology on Economic Outcomes

Religion, spiritual practices, and faith are easily observable factors in the daily lives of people almost anywhere in the world. This leads many to speculate and theorize about the role of religion in driving economic and social outcomes. Positive correlations abound between religiosity and a host of factors that may influence economic success. Correlation, however,…