- Economics of Innovation
- Technology Diffusion
- Energy Economics
- Environmental Economics
- Economic Geography
Voting after a major flood: Is there a link between democratic experience and retrospective voting? (with Michael Neugart), 2017 (revised version 2019).
Retrospective voting may be an effective instrument for overcoming moral hazard of politicians if voters evaluate the performance of elected representatives correctly. Whether democratic experience helps them to properly assess a policymaker's performance is less well understood. We analyze whether voters are more likely to vote for an incumbent party which launched a disaster relief program and whether voters' behavior is related to their democratic experience. Our identification rests on two natural experiments: a disastrous flood in Germany in 2013, and the separation of Germany into a democratic West and a non-democratic East after World War II. We find a two percentage points increase for the incumbent party in the flooded municipalities in the East compared to the West in the 2013 elections. Testing for several potential explanations, we deem it to be likely that voters with less democratic experience are easier prey to pre-election policies of incumbent parties.
From Green Users to Green Voters (with Diego Comin), 2013 (revised version 2015), NBER Working Paper Series, No. 19219.
We study the effect of the diffusion of photovoltaic (PV) systems on the fraction of votes obtained by the German Green Party in federal elections. Using both regional and household survey data, we show that households that adopted PV systems became more supportive of the Green Party. We estimate that the adoption of domestic PV systems led to 25~percent of the increment in green votes between 1998 and 2009. Our results are robust to instrumentation using regional variation in solar radiation and past experience adopting non-green technologies. We conjecture that these results are driven by cognitive dissonance.
I spot, I adopt! Peer effects and visibility in solar photovoltaic system adoption of households. (with Sven Müller), 2016 (revised version 2019).
We study variation of peer effects in rooftop photovoltaic adoption by households. Our investigation employs geocoded data on all potential adopters and on all grid-connected photovoltaic systems set up in Germany through 2010. The detailed locational data allows us to construct an individual measure of peer effects for each potential adopter across Germany. Using a discrete choice model with panel data, we find evidence that the impact of peers on adoption decisions decreases over time. We exploit exogenous variation in photovoltaic system roof appropriateness and find evidence for causal peer effects. Our analysis indicates that peer effects in photovoltaic system adoption are mainly based on visibility in (potentially anonymous) urban areas. In contrast, peer effects may instead be driven by word-of-mouth communication at rural locations.
Full paper (ERSA 2016 Conference Paper) this is an old version titled „Spatio-Temporal Variation in Peer Effects – The Case of Rooftop Photovoltaic Systems in Germany“
Classroom or Pub – Where are Persistent Peer Relationships between University Students Formed? (with Thomas Fischer), 2019.
This paper discusses the formation of peers in higher education using a unique data set of industrial engineering students. For identification, we exploit the random assignment of students into groups and student performance before students met. We compare two different settings for potential peer formation: a voluntary freshman orientation week organized by the students' union and a mandatory group work course. It is only in the case of the group work course that we report persistent impacts on subsequent academic achievement. In line with our theoretical reasoning, peer effects exist between groups of two students who were already similar before.
Not in my Backyard! Local Resistance to the Adoption of Renewable Energy Technologies in Germany.
The well-studied S-shaped diffusion of technologies allows us to test whether the adoption rate of renewable energy plants differs between German NUTS-3 regions in which a successful referendum against a single plant was organized and the remaining regions. We use a panel data set on the NUTS-3 level from 1992 to 2011 and control for NUTS-3 and year fixed effects. We exploit the fact that referenda are mainly organized on the municipal district level against a single plant or building area. Our study reveals that the adoption rate (i.e. the first difference in the diffusion level) is indeed lower in NUTS-3 regions where a successful referendum took place. This finding is valid for wind power and large biomass plants. We interpret this as evidence that potential investors in wind power and large biomass plants not only avoid the municipal district where a referendum was organized but stay away from the municipal district's NUTS-3 region.
Jahrestagung des Vereins für Socialpolitik, Leipzig, 22. bis 25. September, 2019.
24th Annual Conference of the European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, Manchester, UK, 26th to 29th of June 2019.
27th Silvaplana Workshop on Political Economy, Pontresina, Schweiz, 22. bis 26. Juli, 2018.
Regional Studies Association Annual Conference 2018, Lugano, Schweiz, 3. bis 6. Juni, 2018.
7th Workshop Regional Economics, ifo Institut Niederlassung Dresden, 28. und 29. September, 2017.
Congress of the European Regional Science Association, Wien, Österreich, 23. bis 26. August 2016.
Fifth Mannheim Energy Conference, Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung (ZEW), Mannheim, 19. und 20. Mai, 2016.
ZEW Summer Workshop for Young Economists, Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung, 6. bis 9. Juli, 2015.
Fourth Mannheim Energy Conference, Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung (ZEW), Mannheim, 7. und 8. Mai, 2015.
American Association of Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting, Chicago, USA, 21. bis 25. April, 2015.
World Congress of Environmental and Resource Economics (WCERE), Istanbul, Türkei, 27. Juni bis 2. Juli, 2014.
Doctoral Seminar on Energy, Environment and Well-Being, Institute for Advanced Studies (Hanse Wissenschaftskolleg – HWK), Delmenhorst, 5. und 6. Juni, 2014.
Economic Geography and International Trade (EGIT) Research Meeting, CESifo Conference Centre, München, 7. und 8. März, 2014.
3rd Workshop on Regional Economics, ifo Institut Niederlassung Dresden, 24. und 25. Oktober, 2013.
2nd SEEK Conference “The Green Growth Challenge”, Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung (ZEW), Mannheim, 9. und 10. März, 2012.
20. Deutschsprachige Kolloquium für Theorie und Quantitative Methoden in der Geographie, Universität Hamburg, 23. bis 25. Februar, 2012.
Jahrestagung des Vereins für Socialpolitik, Frankfurt/Main, 4. bis 7. September, 2011.
Congress of the European Regional Science Association, Barcelona, Spain, 30. August bis 3. September, 2011.
26th Congress of the European Economic Association, Oslo, Norwegen, 25. bis 29. August, 2011.
Vth World Conference of the Spatial Econometrics Association, Toulouse, Frankreich, 6. bis 8. Juli, 2011.
8th International Conference on the European Energy Market, Zagreb, Kroatien, 25. bis 27. Mai, 2011.
19. deutschsprachige Kolloquium für Theorie und Quantitative Methoden in der Geographie, Universität Heidelberg, 24. bis 26 Februar, 2011.
3rd bi-annual EURA conference “Understanding City Dynamics”, Darmstadt, 24. bis 26. September, 2010.
Zvi Griliches Research Summer School in the Economics of Innovation, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics, Spanien, 12. bis 14. Juli, 2010.
last modified: October 15, 2019