John N. Friedman is a professor of economics and international affairs and public policy at Brown University. He is also a founding co-director of Opportunity Insights at Harvard University, a research and policy institute using big data to understand the forces influencing upward mobility and develop scalable policy solution to increase it. Friedman's research has yielded policy-relevant insights on a wide range of topics, including education access and quality, taxation, healthcare, and data privacy. His work has appeared in top academic journals as well as in major media outlets. His most well-known papers estimate the effects of childhood influences (including neighborhoods, teacher and education quality, and access to higher education) on long-term outcomes such as earnings and incarceration. Friedman served as Special Assistant to the President for Economic Policy at the National Economic Council in the White House from 2013-2014. He is a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and Co-Editor of the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy.
"The SOI Databank: A case study in leveraging administrative data in support of evidence-based policymaking," w/ Raj Chetty, Emmanuel Saez, and Danny Yagan. Statistical Journal of the IAOS, Vol. 34 (1), pp. 99-103 (2018).
"The Opportunity Atlas: Mapping the Childhood Roots of Social Mobility," w/ Raj Chetty, Nathan Hendren, Maggie R. Jones, and Sonya R. Porter. NBER Working Paper Series, no. 25147, 10/01/2018, Non-Peer Reviewed, In Revision.
“Identification and Inference with Many Invalid Instruments” w/ Michal Kolesar, Raj Chetty, Edward L. Glaeser and Guido W. Imbens (2013) Revise and resubmit at JBES
“Measuring the Impacts of Teachers I: Estimating Bias in Teacher Value-Added Estimates.” w/ Raj Chetty and Jonah Rockoff
American Economic Review, Vol. 104 (9), pp. 2593-2632 (2014)
“Measuring the Impacts of Teachers II: Teacher Value-Added and Student Outcomes in Adulthood.” w/ Raj Chetty and Jonah Rockoff
American Economic Review, Vol. 104 (9), pp. 2633-2679 (2014)
“Active vs. Passive Decisions and Crowd-Out in Retirement Savings: Evidence from Denmark” w/ Raj Chetty, Soren Leth-Petersen, Torben H. Nielsen, and Tore Olsen. Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol 129(3), (2014)
“Using Differences in Knowledge Across Neighborhood to Uncover the Impacts of the EITC on Earnings” w/ Raj Chetty and Emmanuel Saez. American Economic Review, Vol. 103 (7), pp. 2683-2721 (2013)
"How Does Your Kindergarten Class Affect Your Earnings? Evidence from Project STAR" w/ Raj Chetty, Nate Hilger, Emmanuel Saez, Diane Schanzenbach, and Danny Yagan. Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol 126 (4), pp. 1593-1660 (2011)
“Adjustment Costs, Firm Responses, and Labor Supply Elasticities: Evidence from Denmark” w/ Raj Chetty, Tore Olsen, and Luigi Pistaferri. Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol. 126 (2), pp. 749-804 (2011)
MPA 2455 Statistics for Public Policy
Talks & Media
Are America's colleges promoting social mobility? - APM Reports
America, Land of Equal Opportunity? Still Not There - Bloomberg
The Ivy League Students Least Likely to Get Married - The Upshot
Higher Ed and the American Dream - Inside Higher Ed
Top public universities are shutting out poor students, report says - Washington Post
January 27, 2021
John Friedman in the Washington Post, "Low-income households have suffered by far the biggest economic shock. They need the help the most."
January 26, 2021
This article draws on data by Opportunity Insights, co-directed by John Friedman.
January 25, 2021
PBS News Hour
In this article, John Friedman offers commentary on the current socioeconomic situation in America: "We need to be thinking about more than just making up for the last 10 months, in terms of really fixing inequality. This is something that has been a growing problem in this country for 40 years."
January 22, 2021
John Friedman provides commentary in this article on offering financial aid to those hit hardest by the pandemic.
January 4, 2021
American Enterprise Institute
This podcast episode delves into data analyses from Opportunity Insights, an initiative co-founded by John Friedman.
January 4, 2021
In this article, John Friedman is quoted on the current state of economy/employment saying, "The recovery has been incredibly lopsided. High-income workers have been back to full employment for six months, but the recovery has stalled for low-income workers and we’re still missing millions of jobs."
December 28, 2020
In this article, John Friedman provides insight to the economic and financial changes in American households during the pandemic.