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The Geary Institute for Public Policy provides office accommodation for up to 50 PhD students each year who are conducting research on a wide variety of policy relevant issues. In addition these students can also avail of the Institute's common room, meeting rooms and online meeting facilities and attend the our seminar series and research methods training events.

Details of the PhD students currently accomodated by the Institute and of the different UCD schools to which they are linked can be found below.

Name Title Description
Andrea Berger
David Walsh
The Emotional Intelligence of Labour Decision-Making  The purpose of this qualitative phenomenological study is to explore the role of emotional intelligence in decision-making by trade union leaders on behalf of their members. There has not been a systematic study that has focused on the decision-making processes of union leaders and their motivating characteristics. It is the premise of this research that a more in-depth and nuanced analysis of the decision-making processes of union leaders will contribute to the body of knowledge in three ways. First, there is a scarcity of research on the decision- making processes of union leaders. This project will help fill that gap, add to the body of research on the labor movement, and aid in the exploration and analysis of union leadership by future researchers. Secondly, this project can be of value to union members as they evaluate their leadership because it will provide data previously unavailable about how union leaders function and make decisions on their behalf. Finally, this research will be of significance for the union leaders themselves. It provides the opportunity for heightened awareness of their unique circumstances and an increased ability to analyze their own decision-making. 
Mary Naughton
Union and Social Movement Strategies in the Healthcare sector  

Name Title Description
Aditi Kharb
Displacement, Gender and Mental Health  Together, natural and man-made disasters imperil the health of hundreds of millions of people and substantially increase levels of morbidity, mortality and displacement. The lethal mix of conflict, poverty and food insecurity compounds the humanitarian plight of the displaced, most of whom are hosted in developing regions. In a disaster setting, the risk factors associated become even more significant and can have varying level of impact based on one's gender. We try to study how childhood trauma due to disaster-based displacement impacts young adult education, career outcomes and mental health and if it differs based on one's gender identity. 
Andy Finette
Informational influence and reference dependent preferences  
Chen Haochi
Policies against Inequality? The Effects of China’s Fertility Policies on Intergenerational Mobility  
Daire Crotty
The influence of parents on third level education decisions. Evidence from the Republic of Ireland. In this study, I investigate the associations between parental characteristics and involvement in the choice of college major. With the use of the Growing Up in Ireland dataset, I apply a multinomial logit regression to s number of models to study the parental factors that affect major choice. Initial results show that parental characteristics (such as education status) are found to have differential effects on men and women, as well as for non-irish nationals. Parental involvement also exerts significant effects on children's college major choice.  
Dimitrios Argyros
Essays in Demographic Economics: The role of the political environment and public policies in shaping family decisions: Evidence from developing countries  
Francesca Eustacchi
The impact of women land titles on children's well-being Women’s empowerment and gender equality are integrated part of the 2030 Agenda and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals aimed at enabling global development by 2030 set out by the United Nations. The question is: does women’s empowerment have an impact on societal development? To answer to this question, I will analyse three different channels to empower women. First, the recognition of land titles to women on children’s educational attainment and nutritional security. Secondly, women’s participation in executive committees of community forest management on environmental conservation indicators and on child labor, and lastly the impact of women’s migration on girl’s academic performance.
Giacomo lo Conte
Himani Pasricha
Essays on Labour Economics  
Johannes Scheuerer
Essays on Taxation in the Global Economy  My main research interests lie in the field of empirical international economics, with a focus on foreign direct investment, industrial organization and international corporate taxation. In particular, my current work revolves around the profit shifting activities of multinational enterprises (MNEs). It is by now well-established that MNEs have the possibility to reduce their global tax obligations by shifting parts of their profits to low-tax countries. I analyze the drivers of such tax avoidance practices, their consequences for the wider society and the potential of countermeasures aimed at mitigating this behavior. 
Kira Finan
Lucie Martin
Administrative burdens and inequality  My research focuses on behavioural public policy. I study how behavioural barriers impact access, and equality of access, to government services such as social welfare benefits. My PhD research uses experimental surveys to measure administrative burdens (“sludge”) in citizen-state interactions. I show that burdens disproportionately impact disadvantaged groups’ time-use, wellbeing, and decisions. I am currently conducting a follow-up survey of administrative burden experiences and behaviours in 5 countries with 10,000 participants. I also work with policy partners such as the United Nations to design, implement, and analyse sludge measurement and reduction projects using field experiments and surveys
Manuel Estevo Lago Rodríguez
 How salient shocks quickly change social norms Previous research has documented the importance and persistence of social norms, but there is limited understanding of whether they are capable of changing in the short run. My research focuses on testing whether significant local shocks may push societies towards a deviation from their social norm, while similar societies remain static in the absence of such a disturbing force. Particularly, I examine the ability of attitudes towards women’s rights in the aftermath of the #MeToo movement to quickly shift, by exploiting individual-level surveys datasets.
Manvi Jindal  
Gender Norms and Time Use: Pan-European Evidence 

"Analysis of inclusiveness and social policies across countries using dimensions such as gender norms, youth outcomes and disabilities inclusion. The findings provide valuable insights for policymakers and researchers in addressing the intersecting barriers and promoting inclusive and equitable societies.

Matthew Amalitinga Abagna
 Essays on International Trade and Development in Sub-Saharan Africa "My research examines the economic implications of Special Economic Zones (SEZs), a prominent place-based development policy in Africa. I specifically provide evidence on the impact of SEZs on local economic activities, household asset wealth and corruption in African countries.  
Michele Gubello
 Essays on inequality and human capital  
Mohsin Javed
The impact of automation technologies on workers with different skills My research addresses one of the most pressing challenges facing developed countries today, namely automation and the future of work. I provide evidence on who has borne the burden of automation and the resulting adjustment of labour markets. 
Nadiya Saba
 Factors influencing increased adoption of EV towards Decarbonisation of Transport sector in Ireland and Internationally  My research is part of an SFI-funded all-island project on Next Generation Energy Systems (NexSys), led by the UCD Energy Institute. We are aware that decarbonization of the transport sector plays a vital role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and helps mitigate the impacts of Climate Change. To support such a transition towards net zero, as part of my research, I will be working toward the electrification of Commercial and Passenger Vehicles. I will also examine the uptake and use of EVs in commercial fleets; understand the behaviour of SMEs towards EVs and model a framework to understand the future capacity and demand for EV charging infrastructure for a cleaner transition.
Neeharika Kakunuri
Partisan Politics, Inequality and Growth  
Olivia Finan
Intergenerational Consequences of In-Utero and Early Life Conditions on Human Development Outcomes
There is an extensive breadth of research on how negative exogenous shocks (pandemic, wars, famine, etc.) experienced in-utero and early childhood impacts health, education, and labor market outcomes into adulthood. An emerging field is now beginning to look at whether long-term adverse effects can persist not just within one generation, but across generations. 
The aim of my research is to widen the scope of this emerging literature by producing a set of papers providing novel evidence based on natural experiments. By establishing the causal effect between negative shocks in utero and during early childhood on human development and later life outcomes across generations - this project will contribute and inform effective long-term policy work aimed at mitigating these shocks. Current policies fail to account for long-term effects across generations on human development outcomes, which leads to underestimating the costs of such consequences. Furthermore, this research can provide insight even on how current events may impact the next generations.
Philip Carthy
Essays on the Environment, Health, and Human Capital My research interests lie at the intersection of environmental, health, and labour economics. My work attempts to explain variations in health and labour outcomes that arise due to environmental health risks such as air and noise pollution. I am particularly interested in documenting regional variations in outcomes and employing causal inference techniques to explain their root causes. I am also interested in explaining how unequal exposure to environmental hazards can have differential long-term impacts on individuals in terms of their health and economic well-being.   
Prachi Srivastava
Inflation expectations and Monetary policy  'Oil Prices and Inflation Forecasts'. We examine how people’s forecasts for oil prices influence their forecasts for broader inflation. Despite debate in the literature about whether consumers place too much weight on oil prices when making inflation predictions, we provide further confirmation for the results of Binder (2018) suggesting a low response to oil price forecasts, roughly consistent with the share of energy in the US CPI or somewhat below. In contrast, we show that the participants in the ECB’s Survey of Professional Forecasters and the Wall Street Journal survey of economists place too little weight on the oil prices when making their inflation forecasts.
Sam Deegan
Feedback Effects of Financial Distress: A Study of the European Banking Sector Sam Deegan is a researcher at the School of Economics specialising in macro-finance, focusing on financial frictions in the banking sector. His current research centers on measuring financial distress in firms and identifying the proportion of this distress attributable to the financial sector versus the real economy. By doing so, he aims to contribute to developing informed policy during economic crises. 
Shreya Swarnakar
 Detailed Analysis of Health Outcomes of Women Health and wellbeing form the backbone for achieving a well-functioning life. Poor health not only leads to personal losses but also slows down economic growth by affecting the human capital formation. Unfortunately, the prevalent patriarchal structure of the society which historically places women at a disadvantage neglects women’s ‘invisible labour and this has negative consequences on their health. The impact of women’s negative health and family welfare consequences have led to a growing consensus around the crucial importance of gender equality and access to resources. It is essential to evaluate the consequences on the health of women because of changes in nutritional intake over the years and if her income translates to better health outcomes for her. The plight of the woman lies in her low bargaining skills. Therefore, this PhD project aims to explore the very facets of women’s health through different lenses, so that I can prescribe policies to enhance women’s welfare.
Tatiana Bezdenezhnykh
Living in non-democracies In my dissertation, I examine Russia's dynamic economic landscape over the past two decades through a multifaceted lens:
general inequality dynamics, impact of state media on social beliefs, and fair elections.
Xidong Guo
Provision of Health Care: The Road towards a Better System  Xidong's research employs both theoretical and empirical approaches in health economics. He pays special attention to the optimal design of health payment systems among the government, hospitals, and medical consultants. His first paper (with Sarah Parlane) proposes a theoretical analysis of managing private care within public hospitals.Following the first paper, his second paper provides empirical evidence for assessing the outcome of the 2008 medical consultants’ contract reform in Ireland, and addresses the effectiveness of voluntary reform. His third paper studies to what extent should we invest in rural hospitals, and which payment system provides the proper motivation. 
Xuejing Yu
Energy Economics  
Yishan Shi
Impacts of Education Reforms During Apartheid on Intergenerational Education Mobility in South Africa This paper used the National Income Dynamic Survey (NIDS), the first longitudinal analysis of socio-economic status which began in 2008 for South Africa, to investigate the causal effects of two important education policies on intergenerational education mobility, including the Education and Training Act implemented in 1979 for African population and the establish of House of Representatives (HOR) in 1984 for coloured population. First, I estimated the intergenerational educational mobility among Africans, Coloureds and Whites, using the standard ordinary least squares (OLS) regression model. I found that the patterns of intergenerational education mobility are different in three racial groups from 1948 to 1997. Both Africans and Coloureds population present an upward trend of education mobility, while the trend of intergenerational education mobility for white population through the last 50 years is quite stable. Second, I estimate the effect of two education reforms on intergenerational education persistence. The identification strategy relies on a difference-in-differences approach. The results indicate that the 1984 reform reduced the intergenerational education persistence by 0.3 for Coloureds population, but the intergenerational mobility increased before the 1979 reform for Africans population. 

Yung-Shiang Yang
Motivation and Ranking: An Experiment Rankings appear everywhere in our lives. Most current research in management and education focuses on examining how its provision would affect performance while motivation is usually mentioned ex post as a potential mechanism to explain the results. The objective of my study is to elicit participants’ intrinsic/extrinsic motivation in different treatments to understand whether different kinds of motivation would be affected differently by the provision of ranking.
Zilong Li
Revisiting the border effect My work focuses on international trade. This includes exploring the factors that affect the trade cost, examining the impact of trade policies as well as linking trade with other disciplines such as history, geography for interdisciplinary research. I am also interested in topics related to international money and finance. I am currently doing a paper regarding the border effect, which is mainly about how the administrative border affects the trade and the factors behind it

Name Title Description
Niall Costello
An investigation into the effects of engagement in education and work on brain health across the life course  My research seeks to investigate the relationship between long term engagement with education and brain health throughout the life course. Studies routinely indicate that that there is a positive relationship between years in education and reduced risk of age-related brain and cognitive disorders. This is even when controlling for trait effects such as overall cognitive ability and personal disposition. Using longitudinal data from Ireland and the UK, I am investigating the life course mechanisms by which these affects occur. Specifically, how engagement in education can optimise overall life satisfaction and permit transition to suitable labour force opportunities which incur a brain health “dividend” in later life.
Sara Ponce
Early Childhood School Engagement and Socioeconomic Disadvantage: The Role of Emotion Coaching  

Name Title Description
Aušra Čižauskaitė
The Objective and Subjective Quality of Social Investment Interventions for Households with Children  Aušra’s research focuses on the social investment framework with a specific focus on the quality of childcare services across the European Union. Her PhD dissertation aims to contribute to the social investment literature and debates on institutional public childcare services. It adopts and bottom-up approach to analyse satisfaction with childcare quality in Europe. The analysis includes two distinctive themes: objective childcare program quality and individual experiences of service users, i.e., households with small children. By combining subjective and objective indicators of quality her research seeks to contribute to research on the multidimensional approach to childcare services.
Inigo Aldama
Welfare Politics in Multi-Ethnic European Democracies: The Case of Ethonational Parties  Contemporary democracies typically reliant on a single, all-embracing national identity are increasingly confronted by minority movements in the form of ethnonational parties over the last three decades. Claiming to centrally represent territorially based ethnic communities to the exclusion of others, these parties channel ethnocultural cleavages by providing representation to stateless or minority ethnic movements. In this context, the modern welfare state, through the creation of inter-territorial economic solidarities, measures to equalize benefits and opportunities both across regions and strata fulfills a “central task” in the process of territorial consolidation. I argue that ethnonational parties have identified a path to subvert the symbolic significance of welfare institutions to foster their projects of nation and identity building and fulfill their electoral goals. 
Marco Flores
Queer Sexual Migration: Masculinities and Privilege among Gay American Expats in Dublin and Prague This study analyses the lived experiences of transnational mobility for gay American expatriate men who reside in Dublin, Ireland and Prague, Czech Republic. Few studies on sexuality and migration have explored how privilege is reproduced or transformed among gay migrants across the Global North. The research endeavours to better understand how sexuality and migration organise gay men’s everyday lives. Gay men expatriates thrive to reimagine themselves through their travel and face destabilizing experiences in transnational spaces. The frameworks of sexual migration, transnational migration, and Critical Studies of Men and Masculinities (CSMM) elucidate intersections of gender, race and social class with globalisation, nationalism and colonialism manifested in the lived experiences of migrants.
Matt Kennedy
Transnormativity and the Everyday Lifeworlds of Young Trans Men in Ireland This qualitative interdisciplinary research project employs community-based research design to deepen our understanding of transnormativity as an ideology and capture its impact on trans young men's lifeworlds in Ireland. Working with trans young men through unstructured interviews, semi-structured focus groups and body mapping workshops this project attends to the ways in which transnormativity operates through the medicalisation of transness, social class, narrative production and law. Grounded in trans studies and theory, this research makes a specific empirical contribution to national and international scholarship in relation to transnormativity and trans life. 
Nobuko Ijichi
Community of Practice and Public Diplomacy – through Japanese cultural learning and exchange  
Orla Dingley
Energy Justice: addressing transport & residential energy deprivation My research is part of an SFI funded all-island project on Next Generation Energy Systems (NexSys), led by the UCD Energy Institute. It will identify groups at risk of energy deprivation in Ireland. Current measures of poverty in Ireland fail to capture both residential and transport energy deprivation, so the full extent of vulnerability is unknown. A key component of the project will be to identify and evaluate eco-social policies which address both the environmental and social challenges associated with energy. Such policies would protect vulnerable households, communities and nature as well as ensuring a just transition.
Sofia Ntaliou
Local citizenship for immigrants: the cases of Athens and Dublin This comparative multi-sited ethnographic research explores if and how local policies produce contingent (forms of) citizenship rights for the un(der)documented residents of Athens and Dublin. The aim of the project is to contribute both conceptually and empirically to local citizenship theory as well as to European scholarship on the approaches of the urban governance of immigrant policies and their relation to the national policies. Furthermore, it will provide new comparative policy-relevant data for the two cities which will facilitate the discussions around the role of cities in immigration and how it changes in different contexts.
Theresa Schilling
 Queer Relationships and Masculinities: Friendship, Intimacy and Community Among Young Queer People in Ireland  This ethnographic research project examines the friendships of queer masculine young adults, between 20 and 30 years of age, living in Ireland. Through the use of two types of ethnographic interviews, this study investigates the various relationships of young queer masculine people, and the contexts which enrich and complicate these relationships, as well as differentiate these relationships from those which align with societal norms. These contexts encompass converging experiences of masculinity, experiences of queerness, and experiences of friendship, intimacy, kinship, and community-building. By approaching this research through the lenses of intersectional queer theory and Critical Studies of Men and Masculinities, this study aims to contribute to new understandings of the ways queer masculine people traverse systemically imposed boundaries of expression, eroticism, and connection.

Name Title Description
Marianna Lovato
 The (in)formal rules of the game: How member states navigate informality in EU foreign policy negotiations  Marianna is a final-year PhD candidate at the School of Politics and International Relations (University College Dublin). Her PhD project focuses on the role of informality in EU foreign policy negotiations (CFSP/CSDP). She is also working on post-Brexit EU foreign policy cooperation, the effects of Russia's war of aggression on Europeanisation dynamics, and social relational conceptions of state power in international negotiations. Her research has appeared in the Journal of Common Market Studies and the Journal of European Public Politics. Marianna holds an MPhil in European Politics from the University of Oxford and a BA in Political Science from SciencesPo Paris. 

Name Title Description
Chenlong Wang
 Online Community Information Evaluation Mechanisms: Wisdom of the Crowds in the Context of Internet Question and Answer Platforms The project focuses on the wisdom of the crowd phenomenon in the context of online platforms in which users interact with each other through a cycling mechanism: reading content, voting on the content, system ranking content according to votes, and reading the content again. The project utilises the agent-based simulation approach to test: to what extent the conditions of wisdom of the crowds can be satisfied, to what extent the collective opinions in these platforms can represent the wisdom of the crowds, and whether the online wisdom of the crowds is able to solve some problems difficult to tackle in the tradition ways.
 Ishrat Ali
 Determinants of life expectancy in socioeconomically poor and politically fragile state of India. This project seeks to explore the determinants of life expectancy in the state of Jammu Kashmir, one of the states of India. This region is selected because it is socio-economically underdeveloped and politically an unstable state. This project would take Kerala (a developed state of India) as a comparator with that of Jammu and Kashmir as both the regions differ geographically, culturally and politically yet both of the states perform similar in terms of life expectancies as per the official data of India. This presents an interesting anomaly (i.e apparently contrary to the health/wealth debate) which has implications beyond India and possibly echoes 'Wilkinson and Picket (2009) thesis

Yuchen Zhang
When Women Wear The Trousers: The Reversed Gender Role Distribution of households in China as Women’s Socioeconomic Status Raises  

Contact the UCD Geary Institute for Public Policy

UCD Geary Institute, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 4615 | E: geary@ucd.ie | Location Map(opens in a new window)