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Department of Economics

Lund University School of Economics and Management

New knowledge on economic methods receives LUSEM 2020 thesis prize

Published: 2021-03-09

”A remarkably deep and impressive thesis improving our ability to analyse data in economics and other disciplines.” This is how Yana Petrova’s thesis is described by the Research Education Council at LUSEM in their motivation for why Yana Petrova is commended with the annual LUSEM thesis prize.

Screeenshot from the video clip where Yana introduces her research. Photo of Yana, and subtitles that read: I then propose a set of solutions ot bring the theoretical and the empirical worlds...

Scroll down on this page, for a video where Yana introduces her research.

Many and important economic data contain information about firms or workers collected over time and space. Developing statistical methods that are appropriate for such data is essential for understanding a range of core economic questions, such as how firms or individuals respond to changes in monetary policy.

“My research focuses on developing suitable quantitative methods for dealing with a specific type of data, namely panel data. Such data contain information on a number of units, such as individuals, firms or countries observed repeatedly over a period of time,” says economist Yana Petrova.

In her doctoral thesis “Essays on Panel Data with Multidimensional Unobserved Heterogeneity”, Yana Petrova provides fundamental new knowledge on how to analyse panels of this type of data. She identifies shortcomings of established methods and provides new, improved, approaches.

“I examine the potential consequences for the estimation of the effect under consideration when the commonly made assumptions are not met. I then propose a set of solutions to bring the theoretical and the empirical worlds closer to each other,” Yana Petrova comments.

Yana Petrova shows the appeal of her methods by deriving their theoretical properties and validates their usefulness by means of simulations. The Research Education Council also notes how she then “takes theory to data and applies the new methods to a series of economic issues, not only of interest for state-of-the-art research but also for policy making, public authorities, and private businesses.”

Learn more about Yana Petrova’s research in this 4-minute video (Youtube)

The prize money consists of SEK 25,000. The award will be recognized during a small corona-adapted ceremony late spring 2021.

Comments on the prize

“I would like to thank the School and everyone involved in the process for the award. It’s a great honour! I would also like to take the opportunity and thank my supervisor Joakim Westerlund for all the guidance and support during my PhD studies. It was a great pleasure working under your supervision,” Yana Petrova comments when reached with the news of the award.

“Congratulations to Yana, her supervisor – and to the Department of Economics. This really is something to be proud of, and the important work that PhD students do should be made visible,” says Maria Stanfors, Deputy Dean of LUSEM.

“Yana has been a brilliant colleague, not only in research, but in all respects and has affected everyone here at the Department. She will be sorely missed now when she leaves for Aarhus University. I'm therefore very happy that we are able to present her with this prize,” Joakim Westerlund comments.

Read more about the thesis

The jury's motivation to the 2020 best thesis at LUSEM:

Many and important economic data contain information about firms or workers collected over time and space. Developing statistical methods that are appropriate for such data is essential for understanding a range of core economic questions, such as how firms or individuals respond to changes in monetary policy. In her excellent thesis, Yana Petrova provides fundamental new knowledge on how to analyze panels of this type of data. She identifies shortcomings of established methods and provides new, improved, approaches. She shows the appeal of her methods by deriving their theoretical properties and validates their usefulness by means of simulations. Moreover, she takes theory to data and applies the new methods to a series of economic issues, not only of interest for state-of-the-art research but also for policy making, public authorities, and private businesses. All in all, Yana Petrova has written a remarkably deep and impressive thesis improving our ability to analyze data in economics and other disciplines.

Essays on Panel Data with Multidimensional Unobserved Heterogeneity
By: Yana Petrova

More about the award and its recipients

The winner of the award 2019

Yana Petrova

yana.petrova@nek.lu.se

Yana Petrova defended her thesis on 20 May 2020. She is currently employed both by LUSEM and Aarhus University, but since 1 February she has started a full-time position as an assistant professor at Aarhus University.

More about Yana Petrova’s research