Working Papers

"Local Labor Market Conditions and Disability Insurance Take-up: Evidence from Environmental Protections in the Pacific Northwest"

(Under Revision)

Using an exogenous shock to timber-dependent communities in the Pacific Northwest generated by the protection of the northern spotted owl, I study the impact of declining local labor market conditions on the take-up of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). I estimate the elasticity of SSDI benefit growth to earnings growth to be -0.576, which is 1.7-2.0 times the magnitude of prior estimates in the literature. I show that SSDI take-up in response to local labor market shocks is greater when the affected population has a higher incidence of work-limiting disabilities and lower access to unemployment insurance benefits.

Work in Progress

"Disability Insurance Take-up in Dual-income Households" with support from the Social Security Administration's ARDRAW Small Grant Program

"Disability Insurance as a Bridge to Retirement" with Jim Albrecht and Susan Vroman