Predoctoral Trainee Flash Session



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Several PSTC predoctoral trainees will present their work in progress or completed research:

Megan Collier (Sociology): "Inequality, Agency, and the Mobilization of Social Capital in Elementary Schools: The Beginning of the Quantitative Part"

Social capital may be a missing variable in the equation to reduce opportunity and achievement gaps, but we need to know more about the empirical nature of social capital including the relationship between social capital, SES, and school-level factors. Here I share the beginning of my quantitative exploration of social capital.


Guillaume Blanc (Economics): "Demographic Change and Development from Crowdsourced Genealogies in Early Modern Europe"

This paper draws on a novel dataset crowd sourced from publicly available genealogies to study demographic change and development in the distant past with millions of ordinary individuals. I show that selection is limited in the data and reconstruct fertility series, identify migration in and out of urban centers, and provide novel measures and stylized facts in Europe, in a period without census.


Yifan Shen (Sociology): "High-income couples in which wives earn more than their husbands"

Recent data show that households in which wives earn more than their husbands are no longer predominantly poor. My study describes how, at the population level, more and more high-income women end up having a husband who earns less than their wives.


Parsa Bastani (Anthropology): "The Deterioration of Patient Privacy during the Opioid Epidemic"

Drawing on ethnographic research in the US Midwest, I examine how ethical standards set forth by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) are not equipped to protect the privacy of overdose patients from law enforcement. This has ultimately resulted in hospitals transforming into extensions of the carceral system.


Teresa DeAtley (Public Health): "The Relative Reinforcing Effects of Very Low Nicotine Content Cigarettes among Smokers with Serious Mental Illness"

Individuals with serious mental illness (SMI) smoke at high rates. Current evidence suggests that reducing the level of nicotine in cigarettes may reduce cigarette reward. We compared the rewarding effects of very low nicotine content (VLNC) cigarettes relative to normal nicotine content (NNC) cigarettes in smokers with SMI. We found that VLNC cigarettes were less rewarding than NNC cigarettes, and that exposure to VLNC cigarettes over time also reduced the rewarding effects of their usual brand cigarettes.


Alexander Yarkin (Economics): "Epidemics and Ethnic Identities: The Case of Ebola"

Exploring the case of Ebola in 2014-2016, I demonstrate that a higher exposure to disease lowers the salience of ethnicity in more diverse, ethnically non-segregated communities, but heightens ethnic identity in homogenous communities. These effects originate from (i) the avoidance behavior directed at strangers, and (ii) the increased reliance on local networks.