Research in Brief

The Downstream Effect of Fiscal Austerity

Researchers explore how the relationship between federal, state, and local governments mutes the benefits of the federal government’s fiscal austerity measures. The burden is shifted to state and local governments that face higher demand for safety net programs with shrinking revenue sources.

The Moral Hazard of Bankruptcy

A new study finds that Americans use personal bankruptcy as a substitute for traditional health insurance, encouraged by stringent bankruptcy laws.

Paying for Equity: Changing Pay for Performance to Reduce Disparities in Healthcare Funding

Healthcare pay for performance programs tend to hurt providers working with disadvantaged populations. A new study proposes an alternative payment model that more equitably provides funds to providers working with these patients

Testing Greenspan’s ‘Spare Tire’ Hypothesis: Benefits of Shareholder Protection Laws during Banking Crises

Firm-level data across 36 countries suggests that shareholder protection laws do mitigate the adverse consequences of banking crises by allowing stock markets to act as an alternative source of financing.

The Unseen Taxes Created by the Affordable Care Act

A new study explains the effects on the labor supply created by the Affordable Care Act. The ACA creates a penalty on employers that incentivizes a reduction in full-time hiring, as well as creating an implicit tax on full-time employees that encourages them to work less.

Time for China to Embrace Property Tax?

Chinese local government’s revenue dependence on land granting is no longer sustainable due to exhausted land resources, distorted profit distribution, and rampant sprawl development. Property tax might solve the problem.

All Dried Up: Drought Variability Modeling and the Megadroughts to Come

A study of past megadroughts and predicted climate change indicate that the Southwest and Central Plains could face decades-long droughts in the coming century.

The Cost-effectiveness of Texting to Nudge Students Towards College Matriculation

A $7-per-student text messaging intervention during the summer following high school graduation significantly increased college enrollment rates in the fall, underscoring the returns to behavioral interventions.

DIY Urban Design: community improvement or an act of crime?

Do-It-Yourself Urban Design occurs when people make unauthorized changes to public space to address local needs. Sociologist Gordon Douglas discusses the benefits—and potential unintended costs—that follow when self-appointed urban planners take direct action to improve their communities.

#TextsfromHillary

#TextsfromHillary was an Internet sensation in 2012, reaching its zenith with contributions from the Secretary of State herself. This article explores how memes and the culture of post-feminism both elevate and diminish women in politics.