Omicron Delta Epsilon Graduate Student Session
Friday, Jan. 6, 2017 3:15 PM – 5:15 PM
- Chair: Stacey Jones, Seattle University
Valuing Carbon Abatement Benefits of Intermittent Renewable Energy
AbstractUsing historical data on the randomness of solar and wind generation, I estimate how much carbon is abated when adding variable renewable energy (VRE) to the electric grid in California, a worldwide leader in its adoption. This requires identifying the marginal emissions offsets related to the instantaneous displacement of the highest marginal cost generator (merit order effect) but also the indirect hydropower reallocation that occurs due to VRE effects on locational marginal prices. Controlling for this indirect effect via a dynamic model renders sensible estimates of wind and solar marginal emissions offsets in electric grids powered by a significant share of hydropower. The proposed dynamic approach could also be applied to grids with increasing adoption of storage technologies.
Foreign Direct Investment and Collective Intellectual Property Protection in Developing Countries
AbstractThis paper analyzes spillovers related to intellectual property rights (IPRs) in developing countries, and investigates how these spillovers influence the desirability of IPRs reform. I provide evidence that the IPRs of a developing country influences foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows into that country, as well as FDI flows into adjacent developing countries. This finding suggests the presence of multilateral effects related to IPRs that existing models do not account for. I develop a general equilibrium international product cycle model to accommodate these effects, and find that the short-run benefits of unilateral IPRs reform spills over to neighboring countries, creating an individual incentive to maintain weak IPRs. However, reciprocal IPRs reform improves welfare among all reforming countries. I argue that this finding suggests a novel justification of the TRIPS agreement as a harmonization of IPRs among developing countries, which allows developing countries to achieve mutual benefit through collective reform.
The Impact of Health Insurance on Heart Attack Outcomes
AbstractI use administrative data and a new methodology developed by Currie, MacLeod and Van Parys  to investigate whether health insurance status has an impact on survival and admission probabilities for heart attack patients presenting through the emergency department. Heart attack patients are frequently used to evaluation the impact of insurance status as they nearly always require immediate emergency treatment. This suggests the decision to seek emergency treatment could be independent of the decision to purchase health insurance and relieves some concerns about endogeneity problems.
To accomplish this, the paper uses a methodology from Currie, MacLeod and Van Parys  to evaluate whether the differences across different types of health insurance. This methodology further addresses potential endogeneity concerns because it compares the predicted outcomes for each visit if every visit were fully insured to the realized outcomes. Using data from the 2006-2011 HCUP NEDS, I estimate patterns in the predicted and realized probability of death, hospital admission and leaving against medical advice on patients with a primary diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction, commonly known as a heart attack.
I also analyze these results independently for each year to investigate whether the patterns change as the economy fell into and recovered from the Great Recession. During this time period, private insurance became increasingly characterized by high deductible plans; average deductibles for employer sponsored insurance plans have nearly doubled in the years since 2006. Changes to private insurance plans may have affected the way treatment interacts with insurance status and yearly analysis should examine whether this is true.
- A1 - General Economics