Economics Working Papers & Policy Papers

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UCD Centre for Economic Research publishes preliminary versions of research papers written by members of the School and other researchers associated with it. Over twenty papers per annum have appeared in recent years and most have subsequently been published in a wide range of outlets, including most of the leading economics journals worldwide.

For more information please see the School of Economics website or contact our information centre at


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 915
  • Publication
    Different Strokes: Winning Strategies in Women’s (and Men’s) Big Bash Cricket
    (University College Dublin. School of Economics, 2023-12) ;
    We analyse winning strategies in the Australian Women’s Big Bash Cricket League (WBBL). Our objective is two- fold. First such analysis has potential implications for fan interest, team selection and recruitment. While several studies have analysed winning strategies in men’s cricket we are unaware of any such studies for women’s cricket. Second, comparing winning strategies in the WBBL and the men’s Big Bash League (MBBL) enables us to test the hypothesis that women perform less well than men under pressure. The two competitions are (almost) identical in all aspects other than gender. We find no evidence that play in the women’s game is objectively less exciting than then men’s game. In fact, we find some evidence that more attacking play is more likely to win in the woman’s competition than in the men’s.
  • Publication
    Gender Differences in Teacher Judgement of Comparative Advantage
    (University College Dublin. School of Economics, 2023-11) ;
    Much research shows that students take account of their perceived comparative advantage in mathematics relative to verbal skills when choosing college majors and career tracks. There is also evidence for an important role for comparative advantage in explaining the gender gap in college STEM major choice. For these reasons, it is important to understand why student perceptions of comparative advantage may differ from true comparative advantage as determined by actual abilities. One plausible pathway is through teachers. We study gender differences in teacher evaluations of student comparative advantage relative to comparative advantage as measured by test scores. We show that findings are very sensitive to the methods used; commonly used methods are not equivalent and can give different results as they target different estimands. Using two recent UK cohort surveys, we show that these conceptual issues matter in practice when we evaluate whether teachers are likely to over-estimate female comparative advantage in English relative to mathematics. Our preferred estimates provide no evidence that teachers exaggerate the female advantage in English relative to mathematics and generally suggest the opposite. We conclude that differences in teacher judgement by gender do not provide another reason for the gender gap in STEM.
  • Publication
    How Much Schizophrenia Do Famines Cause?
    (University College Dublin. School of Economics, 2023-11) ; ;
    Since the 1970s, famines have been widely invoked as natural experiments in research into the long-term impact of foetal exposure to nutritional shocks. That research has produced compelling evidence for a robust link between foetal exposure and the odds of developing schizophrenia. However, the implications of that research for the human cost of famines in the longer run has not been investigated. We address the connection between foetal origins and schizophrenia with that question in mind. The impact turns out to be very modest – much less than one per cent of the associated famine death tolls – across a selection of case studies.
  • Publication
    Oil Prices and Inflation Forecasts
    (University College Dublin. School of Economics, 2023-11) ; ;
    We examine how people’s forecasts for oil or gasoline prices influence their forecasts for broader inflation. We find little evidence from two US household surveys that people over-react to their beliefs about gasoline prices when formulating their forecasts about inflation, with much of theevidence pointing towards under-reaction. We also show that the participants in the ECB’s Survey of Professional Forecasters and the Wall Street Journal survey of economists appear to place too little weight on their subjective forecasts for oil prices when making their forecasts for total inflation.
  • Publication
    Industrial policy on the frontier: lessons from the first two industrial revolutions
    (University College Dublin. School of Economics, 2023-11) ;
    In this paper we revisit the histories of the first and second industrial revolutions, focussing on the experiences of countries that were already rich by the standards of the time, on or close to the technological frontier, and which could reasonably have aspired to industrial and economic leadership. Did governments intervene to promote economic growth, technological change, or industrial leadership, and if so what form did these interventions take? Were some strategies more successful than others, and if so why? The paper is structured thematically rather than chronologically, since we lack the space required to provide a proper narrative history. In the remainder of this introduction we make some general points about the history of industrial policy, beginning with a discussion of the variety of forms that it has taken over time.