Watson Institute at Brown University
International and Public Affairs
Neil Thakral

Neil Thakral

+1 401 863 9735
111 Thayer Street, Room 262


Downloadable CV

Neil Thakral

Nancy Donohue and Diane Elam Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs and Economics

Areas of Interest: Behavioral economics, Housing policy, Labor markets


Neil Thakral joined Brown University in 2018. His research interests are in labor, behavioral, and public economics as well as market design.


Thakral’s research investigates the way people make decisions, with an emphasis on implications for the design of markets and incentives. Some of his recent work examines the effect of fluctuations in earnings on the decision of how much to work, focusing on workers who can flexibly choose their hours. Thakral has also done research on the optimal allocation of public housing. He proposes a new mechanism for allocating public housing that improves the matching between tenants and housing units by allowing households to trade off their preferences for different units and waiting times. He shows that implementing this in practice would lead to substantial welfare gains.


- "The Design of Public-Housing Policies," More Equal by Design: Economic Design Responses to Inequality, eds. Scott Duke Kominers and Alexander Teytelboym, Oxford University Press.

- “Matching with Stochastic Arrival,” Proceedings of the Sixteenth ACM Conference on Economics and Computation, EC ’15, p. 343, 2015.


MPA 2040 - Policy Analysis and Program Evaluation

Talks & Media

The Design of Public-Housing Policies - presented at Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Global Working Group's Market Design Perspectives on Inequality