Rice Economics Fall 2019 Newsletter

RICE ECON Fall 2019 News and Views from the Economics Department at Rice Welcome Back! In this issue of our Newsletter, we welcome Prof. George Zodrow back as our Department Chair – a position that he had held previously in the late 1990s. In the attached interview, Prof. Zodrow discusses his research projects and highlights his vision for the continued success of our Department. We introduce a new Assistant Professor in the Department, Dr. Nina Bobkova, who explains to students how her version of Econ 470, Market Design, may differ from the version previously taught by Dr. Mallesh Pai. We also congratulate Dr. Yinghua He for winning the American Economic Journal – Microeconomics Best Paper Prize for 2019.The Spotlight on Faculty section includes an interview with Prof. Xun Tang, highlighting his recent research activities, including a new grant from the National Science Foundation, and his vision for the econometrics MTEC capstone course, Econ 497. We highlight this year’s RISE Nobel Laureate Series Lecture, by Prof. Peter A. Diamond, entitled “The Future of Social Security.” We close the Newsletter by interviewing MTEC Senior Biz Rasich, who has herself conducted the interviews with Profs. Zodrow and Tang, which are included in this Newsletter. She answers questions about her educational journey, and offers some advice for younger students contemplating degrees and careers in Economics. Meet Dr. Nina Bobkova, Our Newest Faculty Member Nina Bobkova received her PhD from Bonn University in 2018. Before joining Rice University, she was an Assistant Professor at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. Her research interests are in the area of microeconomic theory, in particular auctions and information design. She focuses on information choice and disclosure in various strategic environments: whether to seek or distribute information before voting, or which information to acquire before an auction. This semester, she is excited to be taking over the course Market Design (ECON 470) previously taught by Prof. Mallesh Pai, with an increased emphasis on how to run auctions. Newsworthy: Dr. Yinghua He Wins Best Paper Award Dr. Yinghua He has won the American Economic Journal (AEJ) Best Paper Award in Microeconomics for his paper “A Pseudo-Market Approach to Allocation with Priorities,” which he co-wrote with Antonio Miralles, Marek Pycia, and Jianye Yan. The paper is available here on the American Economic Association website. RISE Lecture Nobel Laureate Peter A. Diamond Who Peter Diamond, Institute Professor Emeritus at MIT and winner of the 2010 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his research analyzing markets with search frictions What “The Future of Social Security” When Wednesday, October 30, at 5 p.m. Where Shell Auditorium, McNair Hall 1