Econ 187 - The Economics of Poverty, Inequality, and Discrimination

Professor David Bjerk

Syllabus

Announcements:

No class on Wednesday November 23rd (the day before Thanksgiving). We will make it up later in the term.

No class on Monday December 5th. We will be watching a movie in the evening (either Sunday Dec 4th from 6:30-8:30, or Monday Dec 5th from 6:30-8:30, both in our regular classroom).

Final Papers: I'll push back the due date to Friday December at 5:00PM (must be emailed to me or put under my door/handed to me by then).

Textbook:

Lang, Kevin. (2007). Poverty and Discrimination. Princeton University Press. Princeton , NJ.

Powerpoint Slides and other readings:

Who is Poor? What is Poverty? (Kotlowitz "There Are No Children Here"; Lang - Ch 2)

Labor Demand (Borjas - Ch 4)

Labor Supply (Borjas - Ch 2)

Labor Market Equilibrium (Borjas - Ch 5, Ch 6; Elliot "Guinea Pigging")

Overview of Regression Analysis (Lang Ch 1: 19-28)

Labor Market Regulation (Borjas Ch 4: 136-146; Lang Ch 5: 115-121; Kennan "Elusive Effects of Minimum Wages"; ***optional***DeLeire "Unintended Consequences of Americans With Disabilities Act")

Job Training (Lang Ch 5: 121-133; Schochet, Burghardt, McConnel "Does Job Corps Work? Impact Findings from the National Job Corps Study")

Welfare (Borjas, Ch 2: 54-63; Lang, Ch 3 and Ch 9)

Intergenerational Issues (Leblanc - Random Family (Chapter 1), Solon -Intergenerational Income Mobility;)

Teen Motherhood (Lang Ch 6: 161-172)

High Poverty Neighborhoods

Inequality (Borjas Ch 8; Saez - "Striking it Richer: The Evolution of Top Incomes in the United States"; Frank - "Frame of Reference as a Public Good")

Taxation (Slemrod - Taxing Ourselves Ch 2; Buffet - Stop Coddling the Super Rich; Lowenstein - "The Inequality Conundrum")

Trends in Racial Inequality (Lang Ch 11: 283-293; Heckman and Donohue - "Continuous Versus Episodic Change: The Impact of Civil Rights Policy on the Economic Status of Blacks.")

Theories of Discrimination (Lang Ch 10)

Empirically Assessing Discrimination (Lang, Chapter 11: 293-305; Bjerk - "The Differing Nature of Black-White Wage Inequality Across Occupational Sectors"; Bertrand and Mullainathan - "Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal?"; Doleac and Stein - "The Visible Hand")

Eductaion (Hanushek - "Failure of Input-based Schooling Policies"; Fryer and Levitt - "The Black-White Test Score Gap through Third Grade"; Lang Ch 6:177 - 190; Belfield et al "The High/Scope Perry Preschool Program")

Screening of "Waiting for Superman"

Innovations in Eductaion Policy (Dobbie and Fryer "Are High-Quality Schools Enough to Increase Achievment Among The Poor?"; Lang Ch 8)

Problem Sets:

Problem Set 1 (due Monday, Sept 19th) answers

Problem Set 2 (due Monday, Oct 3rd) answers

Problem Set 3 (due Monday, Oct 10th) answers

Problem Set 4 (due Tuesday, Nov 1st at Ath night) answers

Problem Set 5 (due Monday, Nov 14) answers

Problem Set 6 (due Monday, Nov 28th) answers

Additional Materials:

Midterm 1 Review

Midterm 2 Review