Public Economics

Public Economics focuses on real-world settings where public intervention can improve the functioning of the economy. Our teaching and research addresses a variety of such questions, such as:

  • What drives the location of pollution and what are ways to address environmental injustices? 
  • How does school spending impact educational attainment?
  • Do policies that encourage college enrollment impact inequality?
  • Can police reform address racial and ethnic disparities in the criminal legal system?
  • Do corporate tax cuts increase inequality?

Public economics includes subfields like:

  • Economics of Education
  • Urban Economics
  • Public Finance
  • Health Economics
  • Law and Economics
  • Environmental Economics
  • Race and Justice
  Faculty Member
New Research from Professor Patrick Bayer Examines Black-White Earnings Gap

Patrick Bayer, Professor of Economics

Professor Bayer's research focuses on wide range of subjects including racial inequality and segregation, social interactions, housing markets, education, and criminal justice. 

Thomas Nechyba headshot

Thomas J. Nechyba, Professor of Economics

Professor Nechyba conducts his research within the fields of public finance, fiscal federalism, and the economics of education.
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Modibo SidibeAssistant Professor of Economics

Professor Sidibe is an applied microeconomist and his research focuses on the impact of mismatch on economic outcomes. He uses model based empirical methods to understand and predict the behavior of agents under different policies.

Juan Carlos Suarez Serrato

Juan Carlos Suárez SerratoAssistant Professor of Economics

Professor Suárez Serrato studies how taxes and government spending affect economic growth and welfare. His work bridges insights from public finance with other fields, including labor, trade, development, industrial organization, and urban economics. 

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Chris Timmins, Professor of Economics

Professor Timmins specializes in natural resource and environmental economics, but he also has interests in industrial organization, development, public and regional economics.