RESEARCH

PUBLICATIONS

"Legal Access to Reproductive Control Technology, Women's Education, and Earnings Approaching Retirement."

AEA Papers and Proceedings, 119:231-35, 2020. Joint with Jason Lindo, Mayra Pineda-Torres, and David Pritchard.

What do historical changes in legal access to reproductive health care technology tell us about the long-run effects of such changes? We investigate this question using data from the Health and Retirement Study and an identification strategy leveraging variation in exposure to legal changes in access across cohorts born in the same states. We find positive effects on educational attainment that align with prior work but are not statistically significant. We also find positive effects on working in a Social Security-covered job in women's 20s and 30s but no evidence of positive effects on women's earnings in their 50s.

WORKING PAPERS

Charitable Giving Responses to Education Budgets, with Jonathan Meer. National Bureau of Economic Research, Working Paper 29331.  [Submitted]

Do changes in government spending affect voluntary contributions to those recipients? We examine how changes in K-12 education budgets impact donations to teachers using data from DonorsChoose.org, an online crowdfunding platform for public school teachers to
raise money for their classrooms. Using a district-year panel and instruments to address the endogeneity of budgets, we find evidence for crowd-out of private giving, though the magnitudes are fairly small in this setting and do not offset a large proportion of a budget
change. These results are driven by entirely teachers' posting of requests, illustrating the importance of considering the demand side of the charitable giving market.

Effects of the Minimum Wage on the Nonprofit Sector with Jonathan Meer [R&R]

The nonprofit sector’s ability to absorb increases in labor costs differs from the private sector in a number of ways. We analyze how nonprofits are affected by changes in the minimum wage utilizing data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Internal Revenue
Service, linked to state minimum wages. We examine changes in reported employment and volunteering, as well as other financial statements such as revenues and expenses. The results from both datasets show a negative impact on employment for states with large statutory minimum wage increases. We observe some evidence for a reduction in the number of nonprofit establishments, fundraising expenses, and revenues from contributions.

The Effect of Teacher Strikes on Support for Schools

Opinion polls suggest that the public supports teacher strikes. I examine the impact of teacher strikes on voluntary financial support for schools as a revealed-preference measure of support. I use data from DonorsChoose.org, an online crowdfunding platform for school teachers to fund their classroom projects, combined with teacher strikes' timing and locations across the United States. Variation in the timing of the strikes across school districts does not affect overall private contributions. I do not find any changes in fundraising activities
around the strikes.

Do Late Donors Learn from Early Donors in Crowdfunding? (with Piruz Saboury)

The application of crowdfunding to philanthropy has not yet been studied extensively. In this paper, we focus on the sequential nature of giving on crowdfunding platforms. On the one hand, this feature exacerbates late donors' incentives to free-ride on early donors' contributions. On the other hand, sequential giving provides an opportunity for leadership-giving by early donors. Economic theory states that lead donors can signal their information about the quality of the public good to downstream donors. Thus, downstream donors are expected to respond positively to early donations. To understand the impact of leadership and donor behavior in the context of crowdfunding, we will use data from a prominent crowdfunding platform to estimate early donations' effect on later donations' frequency and size to verify which one is the dominant effect: free-riding or signaling.

WORKS IN PROGRESS

Can Nonprofits Help Buffer the Negative Impacts of Poverty?

The Effect of Teacher Strikes on District Budgets