Browsing by Author "Ball, Richard J."
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- ItemA Dynamic Pricing Model of Bicycle Sharing Systems(2015) Nguyen, Giang; Ball, Richard J.A bicycle sharing system is a service in which people can rent a bike to travel, usually from one bike station to another and over a short period of time. Bicycle sharing systems are now available in over 700 cities in the world after seeing a tremendous growth in the last decade. They are an integral part of many cities’ public transportation system. Most bicycle sharing systems currently employ a fixed pricing scheme. However, with all the recent advancements in mobile technology, it has become increasingly easier for consumers to be informed, which opens up the possibility of having a dynamic pricing scheme in which the price changes according to the station and the time of the day. In this paper, I will create a simple dynamic pricing model. As the cost of operating a bicycle sharing system is largely fixed, I will assume that the entire purpose of the operator of the bicycle sharing system is to maximize revenues from trips. I will then solve for the conditions that will maximize the revenues given a certain set of parameters.
- ItemA Ticket to the Olympics: An Assessment of the "Olympic Effect" on Tourism(2010) Costanzo, Laura; Ball, Richard J.Previous studies on the topic of the “Olympic Effect” and its impact on tourism reveal both positive and negative returns for host countries as well as unsuccessful bid host countries. The returns experienced, as explained by subject scholars, are greatly dependent on a variety of factors, many of which are uncontrollable. Therefore, it is an undeniable risk for a country to host a sporting mega-event; however, the potential successful outcome generally overshadows any concern. Building off of previous research conducted, this paper explores the effects host countries and unsuccessful bid host countries of sporting mega-events experience in regards to tourism after an event takes place. It not only examines the Olympics, but also observes the FIFA Men’s World Cup, since it is considered the second largest sporting mega-event after the Olympics. In this analysis, hosts and unsuccessful bid hosts were observed under a variety of controls to fully understand factors that affect outcomes on tourism. The majority of results show a positive increase in tourism for hosts and unsuccessful bid hosts. However, it is apparent that many of these results are byproducts of a naturally occurring time trend that causes sectors such as tourism to increase over time.
- ItemAbsolute Income, Relative Income and Happiness: Comparison by Ethnic Groups(2017) Greenberg, Richard; Ball, Richard J.Countries worldwide strive for economic growth that leads to higher wealth. This increase in country wealth increases individual income which increases their disposable income which allows them to purchase new goods, services and experiences which in turn leads to higher life satisfaction. There have been several studies that analyze the relationship between income and life satisfaction for all citizens within a country. These empirical studies are consistent in the fact that they find that increases in both absolute and relative income lead to increases in subjective well being. This paper differs in the fact that it focuses on one specific country (Peru), and measures how these relationships differ between the Mulatos and Peruans, Peru’s two dominant ethnic groups. This study also analyzes the effects on non monetary factors of life such as health, education and familial factors.
- ItemAgainst the Odds: An Examination of Gender Wage Differentials in the Las Vegas casino industry(2008) Cheung, Elizabeth; Ball, Richard J.This study examines wage differentials between men and women in the Las Vegas, Nevada casino resort industry. The majority of existent literature addressing wage differentials usually reaches the same conclusion: women earn less than their equally qualified, equally productive male counterpart does. However, wages in Las Vegas may not necessarily reflect the same wage patterns found in other industries, particularly because of the heavy concentration of workers in service-related occupations. The results show that the odds are actually against women and women still usually make less than men in various occupations.
- ItemBehavioral Growth Theory: A Neoclassical Approach(2009) Shrestha, Munik K.; Ball, Richard J.; Ghosh, IndradeepHow do material norms and aspirations on which individual judgments of well-being are based affect the growth dynamics of an economy? Do economies that weigh very highly of these norms grow differently from those economies that values these norms differently? This paper attempts to answer these questions by building a growth model, where the individual not only cares for its consumption but also evaluates its consumption with its perceived level of ideal consumption. We show that it is best for the economy that individuals ignore material aspirations when the economy is growing, whereas they should highly care about their material aspiration when the economy is depleting. We also show that role of individual's outlook is underestimated in contemporary growth theories.
- ItemBehind the Curtain: An Analysis of Internal TTO Programs(2014) Reingruber, James; Ball, Richard J.Using the AUTM Statistics Access for Technology Transfer database and a personal survey of 86 universities, I examine the effects of a variety of internal technology transfer office programs on technology transfer performance. The main findings are that equity-intensive investment policies are shown to have a positive impact on university startup formation and mentoring programs increase the number of licensing agreements a university executes by 20 to 22 percent. Innovation award programs, iBridge network membership, and express licenses have no significant effect on the number of licensing agreements a TTO generates. To the best of my knowledge, no previous studies have examined the effects of multiple internal TTO programs on technology transfer performance.
- ItemClutch Pitching in Baseball: Does It Exist?(2007) Ballenberg, Nat; Ball, Richard J.This paper explores the idea of clutch pitching in baseball. Using an expected wins model, a situational model, and a pennant race model, it delves into the ability for a pitcher to perform in clutch situations. This paper also includes a brief look at previous research for both clutch pitching and clutch hitting.
- ItemDemise of the pay phone industry: assessing the welfare implications(2003) Stern, Abigail; Ball, Richard J.Many times technological developments add to and improve what we already have, thereby increasing the welfare of society. There are also examples, both historic and present, where technological developments imply negative welfare consequences for at least some part of society. The relative size of that part differs from case to case, as does the relative harm in each situation. This paper outlines some of the historic examples of decreased welfare due to technological improvements, and discusses the concept in relation to the case of the disappearing pay phone, or public telephone. Pay phones have been in use since the late nineteenth century (Oslin, 1992). Inevitably with the invention of cellular phones, the demand for pay phones decreased. In turn, profits decreased, leading phone companies to eradicate millions of pay phones throughout the United States. Many people prefer to use pay phones, but this is becoming increasingly inconvenient and impractical. The second half of this paper presents an economic model that may be useful in evaluating these welfare consequences.
- ItemDiscrimination in capital sentencing : an investigation of discretionary bias in the imposition of the death penalty in the United States(2002) Koehrsen, Eric M.; Ball, Richard J.This study examines the probability that an individual receives the death penalty for murder in the United States in 1998. The intention is to investigate the presence of arbitrariness and discrimination in capital sentencing subsequent to the supposed reforms of the pre-Furman capital statutes. The author hypothesizes that race, gender, education, and the location of the murder are relevant factors in determining the likelihood of receiving the death penalty. Specifically, non-blacks, men, and poorly educated people convicted of murder are expected to be more likely to receive a death sentence. A preliminary statistical overview suggests that these hypotheses are born out in the data. The findings from a more thorough regression analysis support these hypotheses and show that non-blacks are approximately 1.5 times more likely than blacks to incur the death penalty for murder. Additionally, a convicted murderer with a ninth grade education is 1.7 times more likely than a high school graduate to receive a death sentence. Therefore, this study suggests that discrimination is present in capital sentencing based upon a convicted murderer's race and level of education, among other factors.
- ItemDiscriminatory Mortgage Lending: A Sequential Approach(2021) Krishnan, Pranav; Ball, Richard J.This thesis approaches discriminatory lending with a holistic approach. Using newly published HMDA data, I construct a sequential model in which I examine the existence of discrimination in both application and pricing outcomes for all FHA and VA insured mortgages originated in 2019.
- ItemDo Teams Pay for Wins? : A Wins-Added Salary Evaluation for Pitchers(2010) Forbus, Jared; Ball, Richard J.
- ItemE-book Overcharge: The Effect of U.S. v. Apple Inc. et. al. (2013) on e-book Prices(2014) Anthony, Isaac; Ball, Richard J.This thesis sets out to estimate the effect of U.S. v. Apple Inc. et. al. (2013) on e-book prices by implementing a reduced form model, dummy variable approach (Nieberding, 2006), using a difference-in-differences analysis (Ashenfelter, 2013). This study follows from a deep history of relevant literature on constructing estimation of cartel overcharge models and using them to estimate but-for prices on real-world cartels (Connor, 2001; Clarke and Evenett, 2003; Frank and Schliffke, 2013). Here, I estimate the change in the accused publishers' e-book retail prices relative to Random House (the one publisher among the Big Six never accused of collusion) due to each of the accused publisher's respective settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice and the disbanding of their agency contracts with their retailers. I find a 16.7 percent average decrease in e-book retail prices from the time-period immediately before to immediately after each publisher's settlement date with the D.O.J. These findings suggest that e-book retail prices have been restored to their pre-collusion, competitive levels.
- ItemEducation is a Powerful Tool: Analyzing the Effect of the Violent Crime and Law Enforcement Act on Prisoners(2018) Cross, Taylor; Ball, Richard J.This report examines the effect of the Violent Crime and Law Enforcement Act on inmates. This act restricted inmates from receiving federal funding to pay for their college education in prison. Therefore, inmates had to pay for these programs themselves if they wanted to continue their education past high school level material. This report will specifically look at two effects of this act. The first is how this impacted the number of inmates who were breaking rules inside prison due to the extra time they had because college education was no longer easily accessible. This report found that the restriction of federal funding increased the quantity of inmates that got in trouble inside prison by 13.97%. The second focus of this paper was the analysis of the characteristics of inmates that decreased the chances of that inmate being able to participate in a college level educational program after the funding was removed. The result of this analysis was that inmates who were older than 25, had a higher monthly income, and who did not hire a lawyer were less likely to participate in college educational programs after the act was passed. These results did not hold consistent with my hypothesis due to potential issues with the sample size and variance of the survey questions.
- ItemExamining a Sunk Cost Effect in the Managerial Decisions of Major League Baseball(2011) Harkins, Patrice; Ball, Richard J.This paper investigates the existence of a sunk cost effect in the decision making processes of the Major League Baseball clubs’ management. This study builds on previous research, which points to an influence of these prior investment costs on decisions in the National Basketball Association. Since in a drafting system team franchises only can make a one player selection per round, the draft order represents a tangible cost to teams both in opportunities forgone and the financial investment of salary contracts. If a sunk cost effect is present, then a franchise will keep a player regardless of the player's performance because of the prior investment made in the player. Using OLS, Logit, and survival analysis models, 7681 players were analyzed over 20 draft years, 1985-2005. Findings showed that a player’s overall draft pick had a significant effect on games played and number of at bats. The higher (lower numerically) a player was drafted; the greater was the probability that the player would reach the Major Leagues. Additionally, survival analysis results showed that low draft picks made it to the Major League teams quicker.
- ItemExploring the Effect of Wealth Distribution on Efficiency Using a Model of Land Tenancy with Limited Liability(2011) Reynolds, Nicholas; Ball, Richard J.When perfect information is present in a model, the initial distribution of wealth will have no effect on whether or not equilibrium is Pareto efficient. However, as Stiglitz (1987) emphasized, this no longer holds when imperfect information is introduced: the initial distribution of wealth can affect whether or not an economy is Pareto efficient. One reason for this effect is that the distribution of wealth can effect whether or not moral hazard, and the inefficiencies associated with it, arise. In this paper, I demonstrate an example of this effect using first a model of land tenure with limited liability found in Ray and Singh (2001) and then a version of their model that is adapted by the addition of a second input into production. This adaption allows me to demonstrate, under certain conditions, that the distribution of wealth not only can affect whether or not the equilibrium allocation is first-best efficient but further whether it is even constrained efficient.
- ItemGiving and Receiving: Theories of Iroquois Gift Exchange(2022) Crockett, Edwin; Ball, Richard J.Research on non-market transactions is lacking in the field of economics, particularly among indigenous people groups. The purpose of this paper is to explore a portion of the economic system of a group underrepresented in economics literature: The Iroquois Confederacy of North America. This paper uses archaeological and ethnohistorical data on the Iroquois Confederacy of the Late Woodland period to analyze their unique institution of reciprocal gift exchange. It asserts a theory of the aspects of Iroquois society and economy - such as low technology, high information costs, and wide consumer preferences - that made the Iroquois Confederacy ripe for the development of gift exchange. It also theorizes that gift exchange may have developed as a mechanism to maintain economic efficiency despite these idiosyncrasies and as a tool to maintain accountability and social cohesion in the absence of a strong governmental authority.
- ItemGone in Six Seconds: HIV/AIDS and Poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa(2007) Jones, Chloe; Ball, Richard J.Every six seconds, someone in world contracts HIV. Every ten seconds, someone in the world loses their life to AIDS. Sub-Saharan Africa bears the majority of the burden posed by the HIV/AIDS pandemic, as well as suffering the effects of decades of overwhelming and unrelenting poverty rates. This paper investigates the effect of individual and country-level characteristics on the determination of HIV-status, in an attempt to understand the complex relationship between HIV/AIDS and poverty in sub-Saharan Africa. Using linear probability models with a variety of measures of poverty and inequality, this study finds individual characteristics to be more jointly significant in the determination of HIV-status than country characteristics. Access to a toilet with running water and a reduction in the Human Poverty Index are found to be the most statistically significant variables in the reduction of an individual's probability of being HIV-positive. These findings suggest that poverty-reduction strategies aimed at mitigating the effects of HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa should be directed at increasing the welfare of the region’s poorest individuals through increased access to resources in an effort directly decrease the number of individuals at a high risk for contracting the virus.
- ItemHappiness and Monetary Factors(2008) De, Sanjay; Ball, Richard J.Previous literature studying happiness, or subjective well-being, has mainly analyzed happiness in relation to income. However, such an approach is incomplete, as assets and debt provide additional information related to an individual’s economic well-being. The purpose of this thesis is to analyze the inclusion of assets and debt in the model of one’s subjective wellbeing. In addition, interaction effects between income and assets, and income and debt, will be examined. Through the use of ordered probit regressions, we find that assets and debt must be included in order to model one’s subjective well-being. Interaction effects provide interesting insights, and these effects are discussed. However, in line with previous literature, we find that non-monetary factors are very important in explaining one’s level of happiness.
- ItemLeveling the Playing Field: Understanding Gender Disparity in Gubernatorial Elections and Policies to Combat It(2012) Brooks, Giff; Ball, Richard J.Women have traditionally been underrepresented as governors across the U.S., although their vote shares have been increasing on average since the early 1990s. This paper shows that efforts to increase female electoral performance and participation through public campaign finance laws may be misguided. On the other hand, increasing the frequency of open elections via term limits has the potential to raise female vote shares and boost female enrollment in primaries. Compared to head-to-head elections against incumbent men, females perform at least 8.3 percentage points better when facing non-incumbent men. This result supports claims made about open elections in previous research.