Research

My main field of interest is in (1) urban, regional and real estate economics.  I also have secondary fields of  of interest in (2) innovation and entrepreneurship, and (3) International Development.  See below for a description of my research and relevant publications in each research area.  Alternatively, you may navigate to my Researchgate profile page to read or to follow my research.

1. Regional Science and Urban Economics

Evolution of China's 'Product Space'

Evolution of China’s National ‘Product Space’ (Howell, A. Working Paper)

My research examines how the local operating environment (e.g. externalities) influences firm behavior.  Most recently, I consider how the evolution of the local industrial structure, that is changes in technological proximity between industries, impacts firms’ innovation and economic performance. 

Relevant Publications (including forthcoming and R&R)

  1. Howell, A. (2017). “Marshallian Sources of Relatedness and their Effects on Firm Survival and Subsequent Success in China,” Economic Geography, 93:346-366.

  2. Howell, A., Canfei He, Yang Rudai, and Cindy Fan (2016). “Technological Relatedness and Asymmetrical Firm Productivity Gains Under Market Reforms in China,” Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society, 9(3): 499-515.

  3. Howell, A., Canfei He, Yang Rudai, and Cindy Fan (2016). “Agglomeration, (Un)-Related Variety and New Firm Survival in China: Do Local Subsidies Matter?” Papers in Regional Science (Forthcoming).

  4. “Minimum Wages, Spillovers and Implications for the Spatial and Ethnic Wage Gap in Urban China,” Journal of Urban Economics (R&R).

  5. Howell, A., “Identifying the Sources of Agglomeration Benefits within China’s Economic and Development Zones,” Journal of Regional Science (R&R).

  6. Howell, A., “Urban Premium, Policy Distortions and Firm Productivity in Chinese Cities,” Journal of Regional Science (R&R).

  7. Howell, A., “Sources of Relatedness, Absorptive Capacity and Productivity in a Transitioning Chinese Economy,” Industrial and Corporate Change (R&R).

  8. Howell, A., “Industry Relatedness, FDI Liberalization and the Indigenous Innovation Process in China,” Regional Studies (R&R).

  9. Howell, A., “Relatedness, Knowledge Integration and Governance, and Indigenous Innovation in China,” Regional Studies (R&R).

2. Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Post-Entry Survival Rates of New Enterprises in China

Post-Entry Survival Rates (by year) of New Enterprises in China (Howell, 2015)

My research looks at  how public policy influences firms’ innovation process (both in terms of the decision to invest  and the amount  to invest), and how that innovation, in turn, influences firms’ economic performance.  I am also interested in the determinants and impacts of entrepreneurship,  and in particular, the role of policy in motivating individuals to transition into self-employment.

 

Relevant Publications (including forthcoming and R&R)

  1. Howell, A. (2016). “Firm R&D, Innovation and Easing Financial Constraints in China: Does Corporate Tax Reform Matter?” Research Policy, 45(10): 1996-2007.

  2. Howell, A. (2015). “‘Indigenous’ Innovation with Heterogeneous Risk and New Firm Survival in a Transitioning Chinese Economy,” Research Policy, 44(10):1866-1876.

  3. Howell, A. (2017). “Picking ‘Winners’ in China: Do Subsidies Matter for Indigenous Innovation and Firm Productivity?” China Economic Review, 44:154-165.

  4. Howell, A. (2018). “Ethnic Entrepreneurship, Initial Financing, and Business Performance in China,” Small Business Economics, (Forthcoming).

3. Development Economics and Labour Economics

My research explores the intersection of migration, gender and ethnicity and how these characteristics influence individuals/households’  economic and labour market outcomes.  I am also interested in issues  related to poverty and inequality. Much of my early research in this area relies on fieldwork I carried out during my graduate studies (Summers 2007, 2008 and 2010).  

Relevant Publications (including forthcoming and R&R)

  1. Howell, A. (2017). “Ethnic Migration and Han-Minority Income Inequality in Rural China,” World Development, 94: 200-211.

  2. Howell, A. and Fan, C. (2011). Migration and Inequality in Xinjiang: A Survey of Han and Uyghur Migrants in Urumqi, Eurasian Geography and Economics, 52:119-139.
  3. Howell, A. (2011). Labor Market Segmentation in Urumqi, Xinjiang: Exposing Labor Market Segments and Testing the Relationship between Migration and Segmentation, Growth and Change 42: 200-226.
  4. Howell, A. (2013). Chinese Minority Income Disparity in Urumqi: An Analysis of Han-Uyghur Labour Market Outcomes in the Formal and Informal Economies,  China: An International Journal 11:1-23.

 CHES Project

2012 CHES Sampling Sites

2012 China Household Ethnic Survey (CHES) Project Sampling Sites

I am a member of the China Household Ethnic Survey (CHES) project.  The CHES project brings together  top scholars  to analyze the first wave of CHES data, which represents the first nation-wide attempt to study the social, economic and health outcomes of China’s more than 100 million ethnic minorities.

 

 

International Fieldwork

Throughout my graduate studies, I led three small-scale summer fieldwork projects in China.   I interviewed rural-urban migrants in Beijing in 2006, Han and Uyghur minorities  in Xinjiang in 2008, and Dai minority cross-border traders along the Yunnan-Burma border in 2010.  For each project, I obtained funding, made contacts with local hosts, organized and trained local enumerators, and devised the sampling design for carrying out surveys.

Interviewing a Uyghur Restaurant Owner and Entrepreneur in Urumqi, NW China

Interviewing a Uyghur Restaurant Owner and Entrepreneur in Urumqi, NW China

Interviewing Han migrants in Urumqi, NW China

Interviewing Han migrants in Urumqi, NW China

Interviewing local vendors at an outdoor bazaar in Kashgar, NW China

Interviewing local vendors at an outdoor bazaar in Kashgar, NW China

Interviewing Uyghurs in the tourist industry in Kashgar, NW China

Horseback riding and interviewing Uyghurs in the tourist industry in Kashgar, NW China