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July 2015

From the Chair

Greetings from Durham, and welcome to the new Duke Economics newsletter! I’m pleased to share with you our latest news and invite your feedback.

On a more personal note, I’d like to say that it has been an honor to serve you these past six years as chair of the department. Duke Economics has been in the midst of a great building period in terms of faculty, staff, programs, and resources, and we are more ambitious, energized, and focused than ever before. Though my term came to a close on May 31, I know the department will only continue flourish — especially with my colleague, Craig Burnside, at the helm.

Patrick Bayer
Chair, 2009 - 2015, Duke Economics

Featured Stories

Duke Beats Out Harvard, Yale as Top College for an Economics Degree

Duke University has bested its Ivy League competitors to claim the No. 1 spot in a ranking of best economics colleges for undergraduates in the United States.

Finance Students Find Duke Ties in London

Duke Economics faculty members John Caccavale and Emma Rasiel are leading the third Duke in London Finance program this summer. Students in the program will do much of their learning in the conference rooms, offices, and trading floors of multinational financial institutions.

Weintraub Examines “MIT Phenomenon” in HOPE Journal

As Professor E. Roy Weintraub will tell you, it was the economics department at MIT — not to Chicago — that really set the course for economics in the second half of the 20th century. Weintraub examines the MIT phenomenon in a special edition of the HOPE journal, which has sold out of its original print run.

Alumnus Matthew Rognlie Makes Waves with Piketty Critique

Few graduate students can boast that they are sole authors of a paper in a highly regarded publication; even fewer can say their paper was commissioned based on a blog comment. Alumnus Matthew Rognlie (B.S. ’10), a current Ph.D. student in economics at MIT, can lay claim to both.

In the News

How Economists Improved New York City’s High School Application Process

The New York Times
Professor Atila Abdulkadiroglu was part of the three-man team that created a Nobel Prize-worthy algorithm that fixed the New York City high school application process.

Many Reasons to Renew Obama Fast-Track Authority on Trade

The News & Observer
In an op-ed for The News & Observer, Professor Michelle Connolly, former chief economist of the Federal Communications Commission, says the desire by some House members to introduce binding currency rules is “misguided.”

18 Incredibly Impressive Students at Duke

Business Insider
Then-senior Shelly Li (B.S. ’15), an economics and philosophy double major, was recognized starting an electronic waste recycling company with fellow student Arun Karottu.

The Abortion Rate Is Falling Because Fewer Women Are Getting Pregnant

Abortion is becoming increasingly rare, but not for the reasons activists might lead you to believe. Professor Elizabeth Ananat says new data contradicts the notion that more women are rejecting abortion and choosing to stay pregnant.

How Indonesia Bounced Back from a Devastating Tsunami a Decade Later

Cleveland Plain Dealer, The Conversation, The Washington Post
It’s been almost 10 years since the Indian Ocean tsunami killed an estimated quarter of a million people. In the immediate aftermath, people worldwide followed the story closely. For most, the fascination was short-lived. But not for Professors Elizabeth Frankenberg and Duncan Thomas.

On Camera

Duke Economics Commencement Ceremony 2015

This year the Department of Economics recognized 11 graduates with a Ph.D., 61 graduates with a master of arts in economics, five graduates with a master of science in statistical and economic modeling, and approximately 200 graduates with an economics major.

Places Every First-Year Econ Ph.D. Student Should Know

Feeling nostalgic, curious about the changes that have taken place at Duke, or just miss us? Current Ph.D. students Maria Zhu and James Thomas talk about the important places around West Campus that every first-year student should know.

Department Updates

Craig Burnside Named Department Chair

Professor Craig Burnside has been appointed chair of Duke Economics. His five-year term began on June 1, 2015. The macroeconomist shares his vision for the future of the department.

New Faculty Members

Andrea Lanteri is a macroeconomist. His main research interests lie in firm dynamics and heterogeneity over the business cycle and in optimal fiscal policy. He is also interested in computational methods applied to macroeconomics. He is joining Duke as an assistant professor from the London School of Economics, where he has obtained a master’s degree and Ph.D.
Kyle Jurado is joining the Department of Economics from Columbia University, where he recently earned his Ph.D. in economics. His areas of specialization are macroeconomics, financial economics, and econometrics, and his research interests include business cycles, monetary policy, asset pricing, and structural estimation.

Faculty Honors & Awards

Professor Vince Conitzer received a $50,000 Guggenheim Fellowship to support his research on crowdsourcing societal tradeoffs.

Professor Connel Fullenkamp won the Trinity College Teaching and Technology Award.

Professor Rachel Kranton was elected to the Executive Committee of the American Economic Association.

Professor Juan Carlos Suárez Serrato was named a 2015 Kauffman Junior Faculty Fellow for his research on the effects of social policies on entrepreneurial activity.

Professor Christopher Timmins and his research group were awarded $100,000 from a Duke-RTI research initiative to study shale gas development and its effect on air quality.
Copyright © 2015 Duke University Department of Economics, All rights reserved.

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