Department of Economics


UT economics professor, Dr. Gbenga Ajilore, talks about the recent decline in gasoline prices, 11/2/2014:

 UT economics professor, Dr. Gbenga Ajilore, writes a guest post for Wonkblog (Washington Post), "What a fake 'viral' story tells us about how we view young African American men", 8/18/2014:

 UT economics professor, Dr. Gbenga Ajilore, writes a guest post for Wonkblog (Washington Post), "LeBron's return to Cleveland is about more than basketball: It's about saving the Midwest", 7/11/2014:

UT economics professor, Dr. Gbenga Ajilore, writes a guest post for Wonkblog (Washington Post) and is quoted in the Guardian concerning the controversy surrounding L.A. Clipper's owner Donald Sterling, 4/29/2014:


UT economics professors, David Black and Oleg Smirnov, discuss their latest Toledo revenue projections, 1/30/2014:

2 UT professors predict Toledo's finances will slip this year


 UT economics professor, Gbenga Ajilore's, upcoming paper is discussed in the Washington Post:

 Great news! We fixed racism. Against white people. In the NBA.

 By Jim Tankersley, January 17 at 12:25 pm

There's a persistent wage gap in the American economy. Though they've made great strides over the last half century, minorities still earn less than white men.

But there is at least one corner of the economy where pay sees no color - where a new, detailed economic analysis finds no evidence of wage discrimination of any kind:

The National Basketball Association.

In a paper set to be published in Economics Bulletin, University of Toledo economist Olugbenga Ajilore (a longtime Clippers fan) uses salary data and advanced basketball statistics to argue, convincingly, that white, American-born players aren't discriminated against when it comes to NBA pay.

Yes. White, American-born players.

Backstory: Economists like to study relatively small, contained things, like sports leagues, for clues about big, difficult-to-study things, like the total American economy. This is why there's a whole literature of research about NBA pay. Some of that research has suggested in the past that white American players earn less than African-American players, because team executives might think white players don't remind them of great players. As Ajilore explains:

Statistical discrimination may explain reverse discrimination because traditionally the best players in the NBA are African-American and over the past 25 years there have been few White American athletes to excel in the NBA. While there have been an influx of White international players from European and South American countries, White Americans are generally not considered elite athletes. Thus, White Americans who aspire to the NBA may see lower wages ... relative to African-Americans and international players.

So Ajilore investigated to see if that was true -- if white American players were making less money for the same value they bring to a team. Instead of using standard stats like points, rebounds and assists, he determined that value with two advanced metrics: PER (player efficiency rating) and win shares.

His analysis turned up no evidence that white American players were being paid less, for their value, than anyone else. Why is that? "One explanation," Ajilore writes, "is that with detailed information about athletes at a young age and the resources devoted to scouting not just in the Unites States but overseas, there is no need for teams to statistically discriminate."

In other words, Ajilore thinks discrimination might decline as employers get more and more information on potential employees/point guards. There's certainly more and more employee information coming available in the broader economy today. We'll see if it helps bridge the pay gap.

 UT economics professor, Gbenga Ajilore, is quoted in Toledo Blade article, 12/29/2013, "Clerk says data point to rebound in local economy."

 UT economics professor explains debt limit deadline


Professor Kristen Keith is the recipent of the "Outstanding Advisor Award" 

Congratulations to our undergraduate advisor, Professor Kristen Keith, for receiving the 2013 UT "Outstanding Advisor Award". More information is provided on page 8 of the April 29, 2013 UT News:

Dr. Kristen Keith, associate professor of economics and undergraduate adviser for the Department of Economics in the College of Languages, Literature and Social    Sciences. She joined the University as an assistant professor in 1994.

"Her availability, commitment and care toward her students have contributed to my success at UT. Dr. Keith always executes professionalism, respect and dedication toward her students. She is approachable, understanding and knows her facts," one nominator wrote. "Dr. Keith has helped me overcome my math fears while helping my analytical skills grow stronger." Another wrote, "Her open-door policy, upbeat personality and nurturing attitude have made my experience at UT rewarding and academically fulfilling. Because of her caring attitude, Dr. Keith forms long-lasting academic relationships; past students regularly stop by her office."


Economics Undergraduate Student, Roseyln Muniz, Creates a News Video Project for the Course Economics of Gender:

 Roseyln Muniz News Video Project

Roseyln is a double major in Economics and Communication.

Economics Undergraduate Students Honored

Two economics undergraduate majors graduated this spring with honors: Anthony Russo, summa cum laude, and Constantine Konstandas, magna cum laude. Also, Anthony Russo received the additional honor for Outstanding Student in the Department of Economics. Anthony will be attending Kent State University in its public policy Ph.D. program and Constantine will be attending the University of Toledo master's in economics program. Congratulations to all!

Department Seminar Series 2012

The University of Toledo Economics Department Seminar Series includes presentations of research from our department faculty and invited speakers from other universities. The next seminar is Friday, November 30, 2012, 3 p.m., UH 4150: Economics Computer Lab. The presenter is Dr. Judex Hyppolite discussing his paper, "Data Finite Mixture Models and Firms' Investment under Financing Constraints.”

Faculty in the Media

 Recent Faculty Research Activities

  • Professor Mir M Ali published a paper entitled ‘The Effects of Scholarly Productivity and Institutional Characteristics on the Distribution of Federal Research Grants' (co-authored with Partha Bhattacharyya, NIH-NIA and Anthony J. Olejniczak, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology) in Journal of Higher Education, forthcoming.
  • Professor Mir M Ali presented a working paper entitled ‘Adolescent Propensity to Engage in Risky Behaviors: The Role of Individual Resilience’ at the International Conference on Health Economics, Management and Policy (University of Athens, Greece, July 10th, 2008). He also presented ‘A Model of Smoking Addiction among Heterogeneous Adolescents: The Role of Individual Resilience’ at the American Public Health Association Annual Conference (October 28th, 2008).
  • Professors Mir M Ali and Aliaksandr Amialchuk presented their recent working paper ‘Weight Gain and Social Network: Is There a Contagion Effect’ (co-authored with Song Gao, Central University of Finance and Economics, and Frank Heiland, Florida State University) at the International Atlantic Economic Society Annual Conference (October 12th, 2008). They are also scheduled to present this paper again at the Southern Economics Association Annual Conference (November 23rd, 2008). In addition Aliaksandr Amialchuk presented this paper at the Economics Department Seminar at University of Memphis (October 24th, 2008). Mir Ali will also be presenting this paper again in a seminar at University of Akron (November 13th, 2008).
  • Professor Aliaksandr Amialchuk presented his recent working papers, "Parental Labor Supply and Overweight Children" (with Professor Kristen Keith) at Midwest Economics Association 2008 Annual Meeting, "Relative Wage Changes and Timing of Childbearing" at the Population Association of America 2008 Annual Meeting.
  • Professor Gbenga Ajilore presented his research (co-authored with Professor Mir M Ali) “Can Marriage Reduce Risky Behavior for African-Americans” at the Northeast Ohio Workshop on November 1st.
  • Professors Kevin Egan and Oleg Smirnov presented their paper, "Spatial Dependence in Random Utility Models with an Application to Recreation Demand," at the 2009 ASSA Meetings in San Francisco.
  • Professor Kevin Egan published a paper entitled, "Valuing Water Quality as a Function of Water Quality Measures" (co-authored with Joseph Herriges, Catherine Kling, and John Downing) in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, forthcoming.
  • Professor John Murray published a book entitled, "Origins of American Health Insurance: A History of Industrial Sickness Funds," Yale Unversity Press, 2007.

For more information on faculty's current research please go to the "Faculty & Staff" link on the left, and click on the faculty member's homepage.

Last Updated: 3/22/15