I am a health economist with main research interests in the determinants of health behavior, outcomes, and inequality.

At present, I am serving as a Senior Economist at the Council of Economic Advisers. I am on detail at CEA from the Economic Research Service, where I am a research economist in the Diet, Safety, and Health Economics Branch of the Food Economics Division. My research program examines how information, prices, food assistance program participation, unemployment, and worksite flexibility status affect health behavior and outcomes. At the present time, I have active projects on a wide variety of issues in this domain including:

  1. The effects of restaurant menu labeling regulations on American consumers' use of calorie information when ordering restaurant foods and their daily calorie intake;
  2. Whether providing parents with personalized nutrition/health information, BMI-for-age report cards, and weight scales along with goal-setting and soft commitment can help mitigate the rise of child overweight in urban Vietnam;
  3. The impacts of Coronavirus-induced unemployment caused by firm closures on food expenditures, food sufficiency, confidence about future food sufficiency, and mental distress;
  4. How SNAP participation affects time spent in food-related activities over the benefit month ("SNAP benefit cycle") as well as other uses of time that have implications for own and household health;
  5. Whether heterogeneity in eating patterns among SNAP receipients and comparable nonrecipients can explain differences in these subgroups' obesity rates; and
  6. Whether telework participation affects American workers' food production and consumption activities and other major uses of time.

In a separate line of work, I am also working on a project that adds to the literature on how changing environmental conditions have the potential to affect productivity in schools and workplaces around the globe. Prior work has shown that fine particulate matter (PM2.5), which easily penetrates indoor settings, not only harms health but also dampens cognitive capacity. To shed light on how PM2.5 may affect brain health, I am investigating whether PM2.5's effect on cognition varies by cognitive function.

My prior research has been published in peer-reviewed economics and public health journals. For a copy of my CV, please click here.