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On April 19, the department convened for an awards banquet to recognize the best among undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty. This year’s award recipients are:
Omicron Delta Epsilon inductees:
Louis D. Traurig Scholarship
Paul N. Taylor Memorial Prize
Rockwood Q. P. Chin Scholarship
Ross Mayer Scholarship
Economics Department General Scholarship
Julia & Harold Fenton and Yolanda & Augustine Sineti Scholarship
Kathryn A. Cassidy Economics Scholarship
W. Harrison Carter Award
Albert E. Waugh Scholarship
Abraham Ribicoff Graduate Fellowship
Economics Department General Scholarship (for 2013: Recognition for Excellence as a Teaching Assistant)
Matthew Joseph Histen
Timothy A. and Beverly C. Holt Economics Fellowship
Grillo Family Research Award
Grillo Family Teaching Award
Congratulations to everyone!
The National Bureau of Economic Research has released a new working paper (18618), “Consolodating the Evidence on Income Mobility in the Western States of Germany and the U.S. from 1984-2006”, written by Gulgun Bayaz-Ozturk, Richard Burkhauser, and Kenneth Couch. The paper examines long-term changes in economic mobility in the western states of Germany before and after reunification and finds that it has declined significantly. The analysis also shows that economic mobility in terms of household-size adjusted income did not change over the same period in the United States. The research provides the first evidence of a change in the rate of economic mobility within a society over time.
Gulgun Bayaz-Ozturk received her Ph.D. in economics from the University of Connecticut and is a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the CUNY School of Public Health, Richard Burkhauser is a Professor in the Department of Policy Analysis and Management at Cornell University, and Kenneth Couch is a Professor in the Department of Economics at the University of Connecticut.
Oxford University Press has published a book entitled, Counting the Poor: New Thinking about European Poverty Measures and Lessons for the United States, co-edited by Professor Douglas Besharov at the University of Maryland and Professor Kenneth Couch at the University of Connecticut. The book is a collection of papers by leading scholars on current European measures of poverty, their conceptual underpinnings, and how they contrast with poverty measurement in the United States. The papers were originally presented at a conference held at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris co-organized by Besharov and Couch.
Professor Ken Couch recently made presentations at the Yale School of Public Health and the University of Michigan’s Retirement Research Consortium meeting. Both presentations discussed the impacts of common life occurrences on economic well-being and long-run health outcomes. This line of research has been supported by research funding from the Social Security Administration and is the topic of a book currently under submission by Couch and his collaborators to Stanford University Press.
Two faculty in the department of economics, Kenneth Couch and Stephen Ross, serve as Associate Editors of journals ranked in the top 30 among the combined pool of economics, public policy and finance outlets according to rankings based on this past year’s Social Science Citation Index. Professor Couch is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management (JPAM) which is the association journal for the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM). JPAM is considered the top journal in the field of public policy and was ranked 29th this past year. Stephen Ross is Associate Editor of the Journal of Urban Economics. The Journal of Urban Economics is the top journal for its topical area and was ranked 18th this past year among the combined group of journals.
Ken Couch, an Associate Professor in the Department of Economics has been busy this summer with research presentations. During May, he presented a paper at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco regarding economic outcomes of divorce. In June, Ken made a presentation at the Econometric Society Summer Meetings in St. Louis, MO of a paper co-authored with a recent UConn Ph.D., Tao Chen. That paper examines the ability of econometricians to recover the results of a social experiment when random data are not available. In June, Ken also made a presentation at a National Science Foundation conference in Fairfax Virginia on the use of interoperable administrative data for administrative and research purposes.
In the spring issue of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Professor Ross takes issue with the conventional wisdom that the foreclosure crisis has been driven by weak underwriting standards and risky mortgage products in the subprime market. Professor Ross argues that the primary cause of the foreclosure crisis was the significant erosion of housing equity among U.S. homeowners in the period leading up to the crisis, which exposed large numbers of homeowners to significant risk of negative equity from even small to moderate declines in housing prices. For example, he notes that in early 2007 well before the financial crisis stuck foreclosure began to rise in all segments of the mortgage market, not just in the subprime sector. The timing of this increase immediately follows declines in housing prices that began in the fourth quarter of 2006 and those foreclosures were overwhelming among households that had little equity in the home prior to those declines, regardless of their particular lender or mortgage product. In light of this evidence, Professor Ross and his coauthors argue the most important policy response for preventing a future foreclosure crisis is to monitor and develop tools for managing aggregate homeowner leverage in the U.S. housing market. This issue has been notably absent from the debate during and following the passage of the recent financial regulatory reform law. Professor Couch edits the Point/Counterpoint series.
For more information, please see the following website:
Prof. Kenneth Couch has renewed his annual research contract with the Social Security Administration to conduct joint studies on Unexpected Lifecycle Events. This work focuses on a variety of unexpected lifecycle events on short and long-term economic well being. One line of research considers the impact of recessions on short and long-term economic well being along with preparedness for retirement. Other topics, such as the impact of changes in family structure on economic well-being and preparedness for retirement, are also being examined as part of the research. The contract allows Professor Couch to travel to Washington, DC regularly to work with researchers within the Social Security Administration on these projects.
Professor Kenneth Couchis a labor economist whose work focuses on disadvantaged groups in the labor market and public policies to assist them. Among other topics, his work has examined disparities in pay and employment for women and minorities, the extent of economic mobility among different groups in society and the influence of the business cycle on the lives of workers. Couch is also known for his research on differences in labor markets in Europe relative to the United States. His work has been published in leading economic journals including the American Economic Review, the Review of Economics and Statistics, and the Journal of Labor Economics.
Reflecting his reputation as a leading researcher on issues of applied economic policy, Professor Couch is the Editor of the Methods for Policy Evaluation, Point/Counterpoint, and Professional Practice sections of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, the journal of the national Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. He is also an Associate Editor of the Journal of Income Distribution. Couch currently holds a research contract with the Social Security Administration and is a Visiting Scholar at the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank. In the past he has worked as a visiting professor at Cornell and Yale universities and leading public policy institutes including the American Enterprise Institute, the Institute for Research on Poverty, and the Urban Institute.