Current projects | Past projects

INSIDE Project (Insights on Immigration and Development)
INSIDE is an independent, non-partisan initiative launched by the Institute for Economic Analysis (IAE, CSIC). We aim at mobilizing and coordinating the research community contributing to the understanding of the causes and consequences of migrations. Special emphasis is also placed on the study of key aspects of economic development and growth of poor countries.

Our mission is to promote research and coordinate the efforts from researchers belonging to different institutions in view to contribute to the public debate on immigration and development issues.

Our interests include macro and microeconomic research, theory and empirics. We are committed to high standards of research.

“Firm behavior under government policies: the interaction of credit markets and labor markets in shaping economic performance”
ECO2016 76734-P, Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Competitividad
Ana Rute Cardoso, Hugo Rodríguez, David Card, Paulo Guimaraes, Lous-Philippe Morin, Benjamin Olken, Dina Pomeranz

This project focuses on the interaction between firm behavior and government policies, and aims at improving our understanding of the drivers of economic performance. Its core contribution is to bring the firm to the forefront of the analysis, progressing from the previous literature in labor economics, international trade, or emigration, which most often assumed that firms are homogeneous. In particular, we will consider two specific types of government policies that may affect firm behavior: labor market regulations and financial market regulations . Both policy areas have recently witnessed major changes and intense controversies. Financial market regulations crucially determine firms' access to capital , whereas labor market regulations, such as minimum wages and collective bargaining, as well as compulsory education laws, crucially determine firms' access to labor -- beyond its quantity, its quality and price.

We are interested in a broad set of outcomes and will address the following questions:
1) What is the impact of firm access to credit on labor contracts?
2 ) What is the role of firm-to-firm job mobility in shaping workers' lifecycle earnings profiles? Do men benefit more than women from job mobility?
3 ) Are there spillovers of education at the firm level?
4 ) How do minimum wages impact workers' careers? Does collective bargaining hamper economic adjustment and will recovery from the crisis require the dismantling of the European wage setting model?

Emphasis will be placed on empirical microeconomic modeling and task 1 will provide as well theoretical modeling from a macroeconomic perspective.

"Theoretical and experimental microeconomics"
2017 SGR 1136 , Generalitat de Catalunya
Jordi Brandts, Roberto Burguet, Ramon Caminal, Matthew Ellman, Sjaak Hurkens, Vaiva Petrikaite

We work on theoretical and experimental microeconomics, with emphasis on industrial organization and organizational economics. Specific issues we cover are: crowdfunding, the regulation of the telecom industry, markets for search and experience goods, market phenomena linked to internet trade, the internal organization of the firm, sperformance effects of profit sharing and coalitional bargaining.

"Social and political conflict"
2017 SGR 1359 , Generalitat de Catalunya
Ada Ferrer, Enriqueta Aragonès, Flip Klijn, Ana Rute Pedro Cardoso, Joan Mª Esteban, Laura Mayoral, Ursula Mello, Hannes Mueller

We study social and political conflict issues focusing on: (i) how economic and political conditions, and ethnic composition may precipitate conflict; (ii) the role of economic inequality as a source of conflict; (iii) study economic inequality with a focus on labor market institutions; (iv) consequences of inequality for individuals' behavior and attitudes; (v) migration; and (vi) the behavior of participants in electoral processes and other markets to understand how conflict evolves and the institutions that promote the development of democracy and good functioning of the market. The research is based on theory and empirics, using cutting-edge statistical analysis.

"Theoretical and applied macroeconomics: inequality, partial information and expectations"
2017 SGR 1571 , Generalitat de Catalunya
Hugo Rodríguez, Esther Hauk, Joachim Jungherr, Xavier Ramos, Sara Ayllón, Pau Milán, Luis Rojas, Raúl Santaeulalia

Our group Works on the following areas:
1. Expectations: the literature assumes that investors know how prices are formed. We assume limited knowledge and study stock and bond price fluctuations and policy. 2. Debt frictions and Financial Intermediation: we study if banks should be rescued and the issuance of government and bank debt. 3. Optimal Policy: we develop a framework to study policy when the government has imperfect information about the economy, an issue usually ignored, applied to fiscal, monetary and debt policy. 4.Labor Income: we study the implication of countercyclical labor shares for labor market dynamics and human capital misallocations. We study efficiency in occupational choice with endogenous spillovers due to socializing and on the job learning. 5.inequality: we design indeces of social integration and inequality of opportunity and indeces that capture individual well-being. We study inequality reducing policies including redistribution, conditional cash transfer programs and education policies.

"Microeconomics in the digital era"
ECO2017-88129-P, Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Competitividad
Mattew Ellman, Roberto Burguet, Ramon Caminal y David Austen-Smith

Advances in digital technology have dramatically reduced the costs of storing, processing, publishing and searching for information. In this project, we plan to build on our past work in the field of microeconomics to investigate how these changes have shifted the way markets function and how people interact within a networked society. We will focus on three sets of issues: (1) how enhanced search and targeting of advertisements affect markets for products, labor and information; (2) how the digital era is affecting the market for news and information and political competition; (3) how strategic interactions on platforms and within markets affect the optimal design of crowdfunding, reputation systems, the gig economy, product innovation, coalitional bargaining and regulatory policy.

"Experimental economics, matching markets, and subjective well-being"
ECO2017-88130-P, Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Competitividad
Flip Klijn, Jordi Brandts, Ada Ferrer, Peter Biró, David Cooper, Joan Costa-Font, Enrique Fatas, Karita Gerxhani, Bettina Klaus, Joan Pais, Arno Riedl, Christina Rott y Arthur Schram

This project brings together three research lines in the field of microeconomics:
1. Experimental studies on economic and social issues
2. Experimental and theoretical studies on matching markets
3. Welfare, preferences, and the social and economic context

"Conflict, refugees and stability"
PGC2018-096133-B-100, Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades
Laura Mayoral, Joan M. Esteban, Hannes Mueller, Timothy Besley, Andrea Canidio, Itzhak Gilboa, Andre Groeger, Massimo Morelli Dominic Rohner, Ola Olsson, Debraj Ray, Joan Serrat

Two areas are central to our project. The first block investigates the causes and consequences of social conflict. The second area involves a deeper inquiry into the link between political instability, state formation and fragility and long-run development. In our previous work we have focused on the role of ethnic divisions on social conflict. We now study class conflict; why we have seen less class conflict than what the intuition suggests. We shall also study some consequences of violent conflict, on the creation and persistence of gender roles as well as on population displacement. The second main block is on political instability. We examine the factors that contribute to early state formation and long-run economic development. We will also study social conflict and the design of political institutions, the conditions under which checks and balances spread, making systems (countries) robust to economic and political crisis. Yet they limit the capacity for a quick positive response to changes in the environment. The second subproject studies the optimal allocation of surplus among two competing selfish social groups. We focus on three sources of inefficiencies: (i) potential costly conflict; (ii) waste of resources to increase power; and (iii) encourage instead productive investments that increase the surplus to be shared.

"Innovation and policy intervention in social and economic issues"
PGC2018-097898-B-100, Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades
Sjaak Hurkens, Esther Hauk, Enriqueta Aragonès, Toke Aidt, Facundo Albornoz-Crespo, Antonio Cabrales, Doh-Shin Jeon, Andrea Lanteri, Albert Marcet, Javier Ortega, Clara Ponsatí, Orestis Troumpounis, Dimitrios Xefteris

In this project we propose an analysis of the optimality of different political interventions in a number of social and economic issues. We focus both on specific and currently relevant applications such as the mobile and automobile markets and crowdfunding, as well as on more general issues about the functioning and economic consequences of certain social and economic institutions. The ultimate goal of this project is to guarantee optimal levels of social welfare in all those environments where those social and economic institutions understudy play a relevant role. Therefore, our main interest would be to characterize the main efficiency problems caused by the characteristics of such institutions and to design specific measures of policy intervention and regulations that may overcome these shortcomings.

"Inequalities: the Crossroad of Labor, Education, and Finacial Markets"
PDI2019-108144GB-100, Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación
Ana Rute Cardoso, Hugo Rodríguez David Card, Paulo Guimaraes, Jose Jorge, Marta Lopes, Lous-Philippe Morin, David Rivero, Hugo Reis, Pedro Luis Silva, Jose Varejao

The initial alarm over a jobless world driven by robotization and digitalization has been displaced by concerns over the quality of jobs and their distribution among the population in working age (OECD 2019; Acemoglu and Restrepo 2018; Autor 2015). Indeed, technological progress has been redistributing the job and career opportunities in favor of workers with high levels of human capital in certain occupations, industries, and firms. Conversely, low pay, underemployment, unemployment or inactivity are concentrated in the young, the females, the low-educated, certain regions and industries. There is also concern over the rising share of national incomes going to capital to the detriment of labor. Therefore, there is widespread call for sustained investment in human capital, on the one hand, and better institutions to promote a more equitable access to resources, on the other hand.
This project focuses on the drivers of inequality in the labor market and their links to the tertiary education system and the financial market. It devotes particular attention to youngsters and females � their initial transition into the labor market and subsequent career progression. Throughout the project, we consider two-sided markets, mediated by institutions. For example, in the labor market, we analyze the interaction between workers' and firms' decisions, under collective bargaining and government regulations on minimum wages and worktime. In the education system, we analyze the interaction between the decisions of students and degree-awarding institutions, under a centralized student allocation system run by the government. In the financial market, we first analyze the impact of liquidity constraints on decisions by students and by firms, and subsequently model the decisions on credit production by banks, under the constraints imposed by the central banks.