Eric Zou

Department of Economics
University of Oregon
1415 Kincaid Street
Eugene, OR 97403
Tel: 217/418-7977

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
NBER Program Affiliations: EEE
NBER Affiliation: Faculty Research Fellow
Institutional Affiliation: University of Oregon

NBER Working Papers and Publications

July 2020"Quick Response" Economic Stimulus: The Effect of Small-Value Digital Coupons on Spending
with Jianwei Xing, Zhentao Yin, Yong Wang: w27596
We study a new consumption stimulus model that leverages mobile payment platforms to dispense massive amounts of small-value, use-it-this-week-or-lose-it digital coupons. We evaluate the effects of one such program in a large Chinese city using novel data of mobile platform transactions of 1 million program participants. Exploiting participants’ rush to the first-come, first-served digital portal, we compare spending among those who barely won coupons to those who barely lost because of minor differences in the timing of their arrival at the portal. We find that coupons generate an immediate increase in weekly consumption among winners by $3 additional out-of-pocket spending for every $1 in government subsidy – representing an order-of-magnitude improvement in fiscal cost-benefit relative ...
June 2020Conservation Co-Benefits from Air Pollution Regulation: Evidence from Birds
with Yuanning Liang, Ivan J. Rudik, Alison Johnston, Amanda D. Rodewald, Catherine L. Kling: w27415
Massive wildlife losses over the past 50 years have brought new urgency to identifying both the drivers of population decline and potential solutions. We provide the first large-scale evidence that air pollution, specifically ozone, is associated with declines in bird abundance in the United States. We show that an air pollution regulation limiting ozone precursors emissions has delivered substantial benefits to bird conservation. Our estimates imply that air quality improvements over the past four decades have stemmed the decline in bird populations, averting the loss of 1.5 billion birds, approximately 20 percent of current totals. Our results highlight that in addition to protecting human health, air pollution regulations have previously unrecognized and unquantified conservation co-ben...
December 2019From Fog to Smog: the Value of Pollution Information
with Panle Jia Barwick, Shanjun Li, Liguo Lin: w26541
During 2013-2014, China launched a nationwide, real-time air quality monitoring and disclosure program, a watershed moment in the history of its environmental regulations. We present the first empirical analysis of this natural experiment by exploiting its staggered implementation across cities. The program has transformed the landscape of China’s environmental protection, substantially expanded public access to pollution information, and dramatically increased households’ awareness about pollution issues. These transformations, in turn, triggered a cascade of household behavioral changes, including increases in online searches for pollution-related topics, adjustments in day-to-day consumption patterns to avoid pollution exposure, and higher willingness to pay for housing in less polluted...
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