February 27, 2007
Today's Wall Street Journal has a marvelous article about the increasing use by economics of instrumental variables in doing empirical work. The focus is on the work of Michael Waldman of Cornell, who wanted to test the hypothesis that increased television viewing by the very young causes autism. He used records on rain and snowfall precipitation in Washington, Oregon, and California as an instrument for the number of hours spent watching television on the theory that children spend more time before the TV when there is inclement weather.
The article, available here, also has a table summarizing other prominent empirical studies by economists using instrumental variables.
February 27, 2007 | Permalink
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