Assistant Professor
Department of Economics


 I am an assistant professor at UCLA, a CEPR research affiliate, a NBER faculty research fellow, and a CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar.  I am interested in development and education economics with a special emphasis on the industrial organization of education markets.  You can find my CV here and a list of my papers and ongoing projects below. 

Working Papers

Can Policy Change Culture? Government Pension Plans and Traditional Kinship Practices,
Revision Requested by the American Economic Review

    Formerly "Can Policy Crowd Out Culture?" and  "Cultural Norms, Strategic Behavior, and Human Capital Investment." 
    Coverage:  World Bank Development Impact Blog, VoxEU

Estimating An Equilibrium Model of Horizontal Competition in Education
Revision Requested by the Journal of Political Economy
 Formerly "School Competition and Product Differentiation" 
        Related popular writing: World Bank Development Impact Blog

Misallocation and Capital Market Integration: Evidence From India (with Adrien Matray) 
        Related popular writing: VoxDev (re-posted on Ideas for India)

Affirmative Action and Pre-College Human Capital (with Mitra Akhtari and Jean-William Laliberté)

Human Capital Investment in the Presence of Child Labor (with Martin Rotemberg, Manisha Shah, and Bryce Steinberg)

Private Schooling, Learning, and Civic Values in a Low-Income Country (with Tahir Andrabi, Jishnu Das, and Asim Khwaja)
    Formerly "
Are Bad Public Schools Public 'Bads?' Test Scores and Civic Values in Public and Private Schools" 


Negotiating a Better Future: How Interpersonal Skills Facilitate Inter-Generational Investment (With Nava Ashraf, Corinne Low, and Kathleen McGinn)
Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2020, vol. 135, no. 2.
       Coverage: NPRWorld Bank Development Impact Blog

Bride Price and Female Education 
(with N
ava Ashraf, Nathan Nunn, and Alessandra Voena),
Journal of Political Economy, 2020, vol. 28, no. 2.
    Related popular writing: IGC blogThe ConversationCIFAR newsletter

Teacher Value-Added in a Low-Income Country (with Jishnu Das),
 AEJ: Economic Policy, 2020, vol. 12, no. 1.
    Formerly "The Misallocation of Pay and Productivity in the Public Sector: Evidence from the Labor Market for Teachers."
    Working paper with more discussion of contract teacher policy.
    Related popular writing: VoxDev, World Bank Digest, The Economist