The PAM Ph.D. program offers four areas of specialty: Education Policy, Family/Social Welfare Policy, Health Policy and Regulatory Policy.
Economics of Education
Research topics in the economics of education span many issues at the intersection of labor economics and public finance. Students are trained in appropriate microeconomic theory and empirical techniques used in education research. You will learn about educational institutions, policy issues at the K12 and higher education levels in the United States and abroad.
Economic returns to general schooling and school quality.
The role of financial constraints in student educational investment decisions.
The effect of government resources on educational outcomes.
Identification of educational production functions (which includes the role of teacher quality, school organizations and class sizes on student achievement).
Teacher labor markets and the effects of market-based interventions, such as merit pay and charter schools, on academic outcomes.
Family/Social Welfare Policy
This topic area studies policy-relevant to family and social issues such as:
The diversity of family living arrangements (patterns of marriage, single-parenthood, cohabitation and the like)
Poverty and public policy
Family-based factors influencing and resulting from employment
Immigration and public policy
Crime and public policy
Public policy and child well-being
In the health policy concentration we study the economics of:
Risky health behaviors (e.g., cigarette smoking, obesity) and related policies
Consumers' response to health information and advertising
Health insurance markets, both public (Medicare, Medicaid) and private, including regulation, consequences of coverage, and trends in managed care
Education of physicians and medical labor markets
Welfare effects (benefits and costs) of new medical technologies
This topic area focuses on the impact of the social, legal, regulatory and economic environment on consumer and producer behavior.
Specific topics include:
The effects of government intervention in industry and its impact on consumers
The effects of government policies towards the corporation