Career Position(s)

Think Tank


The W.E. Upjohn Institute

Areas of Interest


Brad Hershbein completed his Ph.D. in economics at the University of Michigan in the summer of 2012. Prior to graduate school, he worked for three years at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston as a research associate. His fields of interest focus on labor economics, economics of the family, and economics of education, and particularly how all three fields intersect at labor market entry. He has investigated how high school graduates fare in the labor market over the twenty years following graduating in a recession, how the availability of birth control allowed young women in the 1960s and 1970s to invest in their careers, and how employers use the selectivity of school and GPA to infer the productivity of new college graduates. Hershbein is currently investigating how the rise of family planning programs in the 1960s affected marriage and fertility patterns and the impact that these changing patterns had on the investments and outcomes of children. He is also beginning a project to examine how and why the college grade distribution has changed over the last 40 years and how employers have responded. Additionally, he plans to study the impact of the Kalamazoo Promise on the local real estate market and construction industry.

His publications include:

“The Opt-In Revolution? Contraception and the Gender Gap in Wages” (with Martha J. Bailey and Amalia R. Miller). 2012. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 4(3): 225–254.

“Graduating High School in a Recession: Work, Education, and Home Production.” 2012. B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis and Policy 12(1): 1–30.

“Playing the Admissions Game: Student Reactions to Increasing College Competition” (with John Bound and Bridget T. Long). 2009. Journal of Economic Perspectives 23(4): 119–146.