NBER's Entrepreneurship Research Boot Camp
Explores Dynamics of Firm Creation and Innovation
For the 12th year, leading researchers and graduate students interested in entrepreneurship met for an intensive week of study at NBER headquarters in Cambridge, MA, sponsored by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.
Researchers who are junior, are located closer to a conference venue, and have established prior ties to the conference draw more collaborative benefits from conference attendance, Sen Chai and Richard B. Freeman find.
Infants born in hospitals with high c-section rates are less likely to be readmitted in the year after birth, have lower mortality rates, and are more likely to visit the emergency department for a respiratory-related problem, according to a study by David Card, Alessandra Fenizia, and David Silver.
Transparency and Reproducibility in Economic Research
Edward Miguel of the University of California, Berkeley and the NBER presented the 2019 NBER Summer Institute Methodology Lecture on "Research Transparency and Reproducibility." He described the importance of ensuring that researchers can replicate, and build on, empirical research findings, and summarized a number of emerging practices that are designed to facilitate reproducibility. The full presentation and accompanying slides are available to download free.
The summer issue of the Bulletin on Health features a study of the effects of heating costs on deaths from health conditions that are worsened by cold weather. Researchers find that households reduce their home energy use when prices increase, but not so much as to fully offset the price increase, so they are still exposed to higher energy bills. They demonstrate that higher heating prices also increase mortality rates, especially for cardiovascular and respiratory causes of death, and in lower-income counties. Their estimates imply that the lowered price of heating due to shale natural gas production and other factors in the late 2000s averted 11,000 winter deaths per year in areas that relied on this heating energy source.
Also featured in the summer issue of the Bulletin on Health are studies of the effects of California’s change in vaccine laws on vaccination and medical exemption rates, and the distributional impact of penicillin’s introduction on mortality in Italy following World War II.
Recent decades of both low unemployment and low inflation in the United States have led to discussion of whether the relationship between the two embodied in the Phillips curve remains valid. An analysis featured in the current issue of The NBER Digest suggests that inflation could rise if the labor market, which is near record lows, overheats. Other studies in this edition of the free, monthly Digest analyze returns from U.S. government programs, document reduction in the percentage of black teachers in Southern schools that desegregated, and gauge the influence of early-career research experience, and show that borrowers who are aware of their FICO scores are less likely to be overdue on loan payments, and measure the impacts of R&D tax credits.
Martin S. Feldstein, who died on June 11, was president of the National Bureau of Economic Research for nearly 30 years. The George F. Baker Professor of Economics at Harvard and chair of the President's Council of Economic Advisers 1982-84, he was one of the most prolific and influential economists of the past half century. This film is excerpted from remembrances offered on July 25, during the NBER's Summer Institute. Harvard University hosted a memorial service Saturday, September 14, at Harvard Memorial Church.
In 2015, the Social Security program paid over $95 billion in survivors benefits to 4.2 million surviving spouses. Research that is the first to explore the protective role of survivors benefit receipt against the short-run financial consequences of a spousal death finds that attaining benefit eligibility is associated with a 34-percentage point increase in Social Security receipt and a 3.1-percentage point decline in labor force participation. Also summarized in this first issue of the free Bulletin on Retirement and Disability: research that estimates the total value of Great Recession-induced disability insurance (DI) awards and a study of the effects of DI awards on the financial outcomes of applicants.