PhD Candidate in Economics

Contact information

Department of Economics
Northwestern University
2211 Campus Drive
Evanston, IL, 60208

luca.bittarello@u.northwestern.edu

Curriculum vitae

Download (PDF)

Education

Ph.D., Economics, Northwestern University, 2019 (expected)
M.A., Economics, Northwestern University, 2015
M.A., Economics, summa cum laude, Sciences Po, 2013
    Joint first year with École Polytechnique and ENSAE
B.A., Social Sciences, summa cum laude, Sciences Po, 2011
    Year abroad: Universidad de San Andrés, 2011

Working papers

Organizing Collective Action: Labor Strife in the U.S. in the 1880s

This paper evaluates an explanation for the unionization of collective bargaining: unions help workers win strikes. I test this hypothesis with data from the U.S. in the early 1880s, when unorganized workers were still responsible for two fifths of all strike activity. Because organized workers might attempt riskier confrontations than the unorganized, I construct an instrument for union intervention in a strike from the location of the assemblies of the Knights of Labor. I estimate that unions raised strikers’ success rate by 32 percentage points from a baseline of 38 percent; moreover, they decreased the incidence of job loss by 22 percentage points from a baseline of 56 percent. Although unions increased the probability that employers acceded to strikers’ demands, I find no effect on the size of those concessions.

The Task Content of Occupations — with F. Kramarz and A. Maitre

Discussion Paper 12006, IZA, 2018
Discussion Paper 2018-16, CREST, 2018

This paper evaluates how an increase in the supply of skilled labor affects task assignment within and between occupations. Guided by a simple theoretical framework, we exploit detailed information about individual workers’ tasks from multiple surveys to examine the impact of a twofold rise in the share of university graduates in the French workforce between 1991 and 2013. Our identification strategy uses variation in the change in the graduate share across local labor markets. We find that higher average educational attainment is associated with more routine, fewer cognitive and fewer social tasks within occupations and with fewer routine, more cognitive and more social tasks across occupations.

Distributional Impact Analysis: Toolkit and Illustrations of Impacts beyond the Average Treatment Effect — with G. Bedoya Arguelles, J.M.V. Davis and N.K. Mittag

Discussion Paper 11863, IZA, 2018
Policy Research Working Paper 8139, World Bank, 2017

Program evaluations often focus on average treatment effects. However, average effects miss important aspects of policy evaluation, such as the impact on inequality. A growing literature develops methods to evaluate such issues by examining the distributional impact of programs and policies. This toolkit reviews these strategies, focusing on their application to randomized control trials. We emphasize two strands of the literature: estimation of treatment impacts on outcome distributions and estimation of the distribution of treatment impacts. Furthermore, we discuss extensions to conditional effect heterogeneity and offer advice on inference and power calculations. We illustrate select methods with data from two randomized evaluations.

Software

bscr.ado (bootstrap simultaneous confidence regions in Stata)
dte.ado (distributional treatment effects in Stata)
Microeconometrics.jl (econometrics in Julia)