Research and Presentations

Published/Accepted Research

  1. "Robust Estimates of Vulnerability to Poverty using Quantile Models". In Press (2023): Economic Modelling. [link]

    - Summary: Standard methodologies that are used to identify households vulnerable to future episodes of poverty rely on distributional assumptions that may lead to classification errors. This paper shows how quantile models improve the identification of vulnerable households by relaxing these distributional assumptions. Quantile models are robust to outliers and classical measurement error, and easy to implement which allows easy adoption by policymakers. Applying this quantile strategy to data from Uganda to illustrate its superiority to standard approaches, I find that it more accurately identifies the future poor among the general population. The accuracy is highlighted in the fact that more than 2 in 3 households identified as vulnerable using the quantile strategy became/remained poor within 1–2 years, compared with less than 1 in 2 households using standard empirical strategies. Overall, this study points to gains that researchers and policy practitioners can make by relaxing distributional assumptions when identifying the vulnerable.

  2. "An Examination of the Effect of Inequality on Lotteries for Funding Public Goods." (with Cary Deck and Li Zhang). Journal of Public Economic Theory, 2022, Vol 24(4) . [link]

  3. "A Living Wage for Jamaica: Considerations for Calculation and Implementation" (with Lauren Marsh and Danny Roberts). Social and Economic Studies, 2017, Vol 66(1&2) . [link]

Working Papers

  • "Do Conditional Cash Transfers create resilience against poverty? Long-run evidence from Jamaica". Under Review . [link]

    - Summary: Conditional Cash Transfer programs (CCT) have become the prominent component of social assistance programs in many developing countries. A major objective of CCT programs is breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty and building a population resilient to adverse shocks that may push a person into poverty. The literature to date has not provided conclusive evidence for the long-run impact of CCT programs on beneficiaries’ resilience against poverty. To fill this gap, I exploit the age-based eligibility thresholds and regional variation in exposure to the Jamaican CCT program to identify its long-run impact on resilience against poverty. I find that child beneficiaries of the program are 11.5 percentage points more resilient against poverty when they become adults than they would have been in the absence of the program. Moreover, these benefits are realized after the beneficiary is in their early 20’s, when they have become more integrated into the labor market. Overall, this study provides further justification for the expansion of CCTs or similar programs targeting children living in less-developed countries.

Works in Progress:

  • “The Impact of Productive Asset Transfers on Resilience Against Poverty: Evidence from a Randomized Controlled Trial"

  • “Can cash transfers break the poverty trap?"

  • “How effective is recognizing contributors in funding public goods projects?”

Other Research/Reports:

  • “Household Consumption” in the Jamaica Survey of Living Conditions (JSLC) 2012, 2013 and 2014.

  • “Westmoreland Modified Local Area Economic Profile (LEAP)” (2013)

Presentation of Research:

  • Southern Economic Association 91st Annual Meeting. Fort Lauderdale, Florida (2022)

  • Public Choice Society Meeting. Nashville, Tennessee (March 2022)

  • ACM conference on Equity and Access in Algorithms, Mechanisms, and Optimization. Online (October 2021)

  • EFLS brown bag University of Alabama. Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (November 2021)

  • Southern Economic Association 91st Annual Meeting. Houston, Texas (November 2021)

  • Association for Mentoring and Inclusion in Economics (AMIE). Online (March 2021)

  • Southern Economic Association 90th Annual Meeting. Online (November 2020)

  • 8th Annual Caribbean Child Research Conference. Kingston, Jamaica (2015).




CV (pdf)