Research Theme 0: Data, Measurement, and Conceptual Framing

STEG Theme Workshops 2024, Abu Dhabi

at 10:00 GST, Abu Dhabi

Each of the six STEG Thematic Workshops, unlike previous online workshops, will be taking place in person in January 2024 in Abu Dhabi and Barcelona. Facilitated by the STEG Theme Leaders, these events go into more depth on STEG’s particular focus themes.

These workshop will take place in-person at NYU Abu Dhabi onWednesday 10  January  and Saturday 13 January with support from the NYU Social Science Division.  They form part of STEG's Annual Conference Week. 

For guidance on how to apply, visit  the call for papers for STEG Annual Conference Week 2024 .

Theme 0 - Data, measurement, and conceptual framing

Workshop date: Wednesday, 10 January 2024

This workshop will focus on how improved data or economic measurement can help shed a light on the process of structural transformation and its link to economic growth. There is a particular interest in understanding the challenges for low-income countries. We welcome papers that introduce new data or measurement approaches in this context.

Specific topics and approaches of interest may include efforts to quantify:

  • The process of structural transformation
  • The role of resource (mis)allocation
  • Domestic or international trade costs
  • Technology adoption and productivity
  • Home production and structural change

Theme leaders and workshop organisers: Robert Inklaar (University of Groningen) and Akos Valentinyi (University of Manchester and CEPR)

Theme 1 - Firms, frictions and spillovers, industrial policy

Workshop date: Wednesday, 10 January 2024

This workshop will focus on the roles of firms, frictions, spillovers and industrial policy in structural transformation and economic growth, with a particular interest in understanding the challenges for the poorest countries. Methodologically, we invite a wide range of approaches including theoretical modelling, quantitative analyses, empirical work utilising secondary datasets and micro-compartments in developing countries.

Specific topics and approaches of interest may include:

  • Aggregate quantitative modelling featuring heterogeneous firms
  • Microempirics of firms in developing countries
  • Measurement and quantification of technological spillovers and knowledge diffusion
  • Measurement and modelling of barriers to firm entry, growth, and the allocation of resources across firms
  • Importance of interactions among producers, e.g. firm to firm trade, production chain decisions, outsourcing
  • Empirical, theoretical, or quantitative analysis of industrial policy
  • Analyses of macro policies promoting firm productivity and growth

Theme leaders and workshop organisers: Francisco Buera (Washington University in St. Louis and CEPR) and Ezra Oberfield (Princeton University)

Theme 2 - Labour, home production, and structural transformation

Workshop date: Saturday, 13 January 2024

This workshop focuses on how home production and market work change during the process of structural transformation, as an economy develops. We are particularly interested in how different types of barriers -- in the home and the market -- affect the movement of work from households into the market, and how these barriers may affect different workers (men/women, unskilled/skilled, etc) in different ways. Our interest is in identifying barriers that help us understand structural change in the labour market in developing countries: how it might be similar to the historical record in developed countries, and ways in which it might differ.

We invite a wide range of methodological approaches including theoretical modelling of mechanisms, quantitative analyses, and empirical work combining rigorous causal methods with secondary datasets from developing countries. Specific topics of interest may include (but are not limited to):

  • The role of technology, and infrastructure, in affecting home and market labour productivity in developing countries
  • The role of social norms in constraining the type of work that women do in the market
  • The misallocation costs of barriers to structural transformation in specific labour markets of developing countries
  • Analyses of policies that promote market work for specific types of workers
  • How international trade alters the shift of work from home to market among women in developing countries

Theme leaders and workshop organisers: Taryn Dinkelman (Notre Dame and CEPR) and Rachel Ngai (LSE and CEPR)

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