Document Actions



The Morning After: Prescription-Free Access to Emergency Contraceptive Pills

joint with Gregor Pfeifer

Journal of Health Economics, (2023), 102775.

We analyze the introduction of prescription-free access to morning-after pills— emergency contraceptives aiming to prevent unintended pregnancy and subsequent abortion after unprotected sexual intercourse. Exploiting a staggered difference-in-differences setting for Europe combined with randomization inference, we find sharp increases in sales and manufacturers’ revenues (100%). However, whilst not reducing abortions significantly, the policy triggers an unexpected increase in fertility of 4%, particularly among women aged 25–34. We elaborate on mechanisms by looking at within-country evidence from Germany, which suggests that fertility is driven by decreasing use of birth control pills in response to easier access to morning-after pills.

Presentation at the Barcelona GSE Summer Forum 2019


Goodbye Smokers' Corner: Health Effects of School Smoking Bans

joint with Gregor Pfeifer and Kristina Strohmaier

Journal of Human Resources55(3), (2020), 1068-1104

We study the impact of school smoking bans on individual health behavior in Germany. Using a multiple difference-in-differences approach in combination with randomization inference, we find that for individuals affected by a smoking ban during their school time, the propensity toward smoking declines by 14 to 22 percent, while the number of smoked cigarettes per day decreases by 19 to 25 percent. After elaborating on treatment effect heterogeneity and intensity, we evaluate spillovers to smoking behavior of non-treated individuals living in the same household.


Smoking and Local Unemployment: Evidence from Germany

joint with Micha Kaiser, Alfonso Sousa-Poza and Kristina Strohmaier

Economics and Human Biology, 29, (2018), 138–147

In this paper, we use data from the German Socio-Economic Panel to investigate the effect of macroeconomic conditions (in the form of local unemployment rates) on smoking behavior. The results from our panel data models, several of which control for selection bias, indicate that the propensity to become a smoker increases significantly during an economic downturn, with an approximately 0.7 percentage point increase for each percentage point rise in the unemployment rate. Conversely, conditional on the individual being a smoker, cigarette consumption decreases with rising unemployment rates, with a one percentage point increase in the regional unemployment rate leading to a decrease in consumption up to 0.8 percent.

Link to paper


Gender Differences in Wage Expectations: The Role of Biased Beliefs

joint with Stephanie Briel, Aderonke Osikominu, Gregor Pfeifer and Sascha Satlukal

Empirical Economics, (2021), 1-26.

We analyze gender differences in expected starting salaries along the wage expectations distribution of prospective university students in Germany, using elicited beliefs about both own salaries and salaries for average other students in the same field. Unconditional and conditional quantile regressions show 5–15% lower wage expectations for females. At all percentiles considered, the gender gap is more pronounced in the distribution of expected own salary than in the distribution of wages expected for average other students. Decomposition results show that biased beliefs about the own earnings potential relative to others and about average salaries play a major role in explaining the gender gap in wage expectations for oneself.

Link to paper