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Week 6

Department News

Warwick welcomes the President of Bolivia

The Department of Economics was honoured last week to welcome a former student of the Department, His Excellency Luis Alberto Arce Catacora, President of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, back to the university’s Coventry campus to talk with staff and students, and to learn more about research being undertaken.

Read more about his Excellency's visit in our news release.

Change in Academic Job Titles

Senior Teaching Fellows and Senior Research Fellows are now able to use the Academic job title Assistant Professor. Visit the Academic Processes webpages to find out more.

Pathways to Economics - Your Journey to University and Beyond

We are pleased to report on the success of our recent Pathways to Economics virtual event which saw over 130 Year 10 and Year 11 students, teachers and parents from 23 different schools across the UK, sign up to learn more about the fascinating subject of economics and see how it helps solve major global issues such as social inequalities, poverty, health care and climate change.

You can read more about the event feedback and speakers in our news release.

ESRC 2021 Festival of Social Science : A Nudge in the Right Direction

The ESRC 2021 Festival of Social Science is an annual, UK-wide, free celebration of the social sciences.

Join Dr Lory Barile, Associate Professor in the Department of Economics at Warwick and guests for a discussion on Nudge Theory and how it can be used to influence individuals’ habits to help save the environment!. Please note that both in-person (limited seating) and online streaming is available for this event. Follow the link here to book your place.

CAGE Event: Cities still matter: the role of urban centres in tackling regional inequality

n the post-pandemic UK, the role of cities as centres for productivity, growth, wealth and skills remains as strong as ever. Rising house prices, and the strain this puts on wages, is not deterring people from choosing to live in urban areas. Meanwhile, remote working has not led to the mass exodus to the countryside some commentators expected. But while the pull of urban centres is strong, not all UK cities are equal. London and its surrounding area remains by far the most dominant force in the UK economy.

Read more and register for the event on the CAGE website.

CEPR/Warwick/Princeton/Utah Polecon Conference 2022

The Department of Economics at the University of Warwick along with the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR), the Department of Politics at Princeton University, the Department of Finance at University of Utah and the Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF) are organising a conference on Political Economy in Rome, Italy, in March 2022.

The aim of the conference is to bring together the top theoretical and empirical political scientists and economists across Europe and North America.

Departmental Vacancies

We are currently recruiting for the following roles within the Department:

Assistant Professor (x4 - any field) to commence September 2022
Closing date: 15 November 2021

Teaching Fellow
Closing date: 17 November 2021

Award in Technology Enhanced Learning (PGA TEL)

This year's cohort for the Postgraduate Award in Technology Enhanced Learning is now open. This is a one-year, part-time, project-based course run by the Academic Development Centre, which is free to staff and accredited for associate fellowship (AFHEA) or fellowship (FHEA) of the Higher Education Academy. Further details can be found on their course webpage. (Nicholas Jackson would be happy to chat about his experiences doing the course).

Applicant Mentoring Programme (AMP)

The aim of the Economics Applicant Mentoring Programme (AMP) is to help applicants from underrepresented backgrounds prepare their applications to economics PhD programmes by matching applicants to mentors who are PhD students in the economics departments at Cambridge, LSE, Oxford, UCL, and Warwick.

You can read more about this mentoring programme on our AMP webpage, including the kind of advice AMP mentors can provide and how can a prospective student join the programme on our AMP webpage. If you have any questions or queries, please contact Alperen Tosun: alperen dot tosun at warwick dot ac dot uk

The Financial Times Online Subscription

To access our subscription to the Financial Times Online for the first time - please click on the link provided and follow the steps on the FT webpage to set up your individual access: FT Online Access Set Up

If you experience any difficulties in obtaining access, please contact the FT Online Support Team by email: and if this fails, please contact Bozena Bozena dot Beauclair at warwick dot ac dot uk who will liaise with the FT Online Subscription Team to resolve the issue.

Departmental HR Update

Health and Wellbeing

Good health and wellbeing is paramount for staff at all times, but more especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. The University offers a range of remote sessions dedicated to improving our wellbeing. We encourage as many of you as possible to explore any one of these opportunities.

Online Resources

IT Support - New Online Systems

A dedicated webpage on the staff intranet named ‘Working Remotely’ has been created, where it documents the various tools we are using to collaborate with one another, i.e. Microsoft Teams and how to access your email and the H and M drives.

NOTE – this webpage is constantly being updated with new information so please revisit it if you have any questions.

Publications, Presentations & Workshops

Daniel Sgroi's paper (joint with Emmanouil Benetos, Alessandro Ragano and Anthony Tuckwell) "Measuring National Mood with Music: Using Machine Learning to Construct a Measure of National Valence from Audio Data," has been accepted at Behavior Research Methods.

Abstract: We propose a new measure of national valence based on the emotional content of a country's most popular songs. We first trained a machine learning model using 191 different audio features embedded within music and use this model to construct a long-run valence index for the UK. This index correlates strongly and significantly with survey-based life satisfaction and outperforms an equivalent text-based measure. Our methods have the potential to be applied widely and to provide a solution to the severe lack of historical time-series data on psychological well-being.

Stefania Paredes Fuentes gave a talk on “Changing Assessments in Economics: Does It Work?” as part of the Education Seminar Series in Economics at Royal Holloway on Wednesday 10th November.

Sonia Bhalotra has recently published the following papers:

  • CAGE WP 586/2021: The right to health and the health effects of denials

Sonia Bhalotra and Manuel Fernandez.

  • CAGE WP 582/2021: Religion and abortion- The role of politician identity. Sonia Bhalotra, Irma Clots, Lakshmi Iyer. Forthcoming JDE.
  • CAGE WP 573/201: Job displacement, unemployment benefits and domestic violence. Sonia Bhalotra, Diogo G. C. Britto, Paolo Pinotti and Breno Sampaio.

Sonia Bhalotra gave a seminar to the Open Innovation Team of the UK Government on the pandemic and domestic violence (28 October 2021). She gave invited keynote lectures at a World Bank workshop on son preference (1 September 2021), and at the Chilean MLIV, a research centre focused on lifecourse health and earnings (18 August 2021).

Sonia also presented her work at the EALE Flash Talks on mental health (17 September) and at seminars at the research department of CAF, the Latin American development bank (23 Sept) and the universities of Umea (22 Sep), Padova (28 Sep), Georgtown and the World Bank research department (30 Sep) and Penn State (4 Oct).

Working Papers

Eleanya Nduka has a new working paper 'Willingness to pay or willingness to accept? An experimental study on secondhand smoke'.

Natalie Chen & Dennis Novy's working paper 'Gravity and Heterogeneous Trade Cost Elasticities' has been released as part of the Warwick Economics Research working paper series.

Media Coverage

'Treasury could raise £16bn a year if shares and property were taxed like salaries' - Arun Advani's research mentioned - The Guardian - 26 Oct 2021.

'Physical Pain Fluctuates With Economic Conditions, Suggests A New Study' - Andrew Oswald's research mentioned - Forbes - 11 Oct 2021.

'UK employment figures' - Arun Advani interviewed live - BBC News - 12 October 2021.

'Prince Harry is surfing an investment wave' - Andrew Oswald's research mentioned - The Spectator - 23 October 2021.

Dates For Your Diary

General Items

Chromebooks for Afghan refugee families

Do you have any old, unused, personal laptops that you no longer use?

Older laptops can be converted into Chromebooks and the aim of this project is to provide as many converted Chromebooks as possible to Afghan refugee families living in the local area. Please ensure that your device is definitely unwanted and has been wiped of any personal information before donating. Please bring your donations to the Student Union reception – opening times: 9-5pm Monday to Thursday (4.30pm on Friday).

Please remember to:

  • include your name and contact email address with your donation.
  • include the changer.
  • ask your family, friends and neighbours if they have any devices to donate

Please note that we are only able to accept older laptops 5 years plus and not iPads or tablet devices. These MUST be PERSONAL devices and NOT university owned.

All donated devices will be inspected and wiped clean of all data before being converted to a Chromebooks by the team of WV Technology Volunteers. Once converted the Chromebooks will then be distributed to Afghan refugee families living in the local area.

If you have any questions or queries please contact volunteers at warwick dot ac dot uk