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Category Archives: Economy

Measuring and Mitigating Racial Disparities in Tax Audits

Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research: Working Paper, Measuring and Mitigating Racial Disparities in Tax Audits. Hadi Elzayn; Evelyn Smith; Thomas Hertz; Arun Ramesh; Robin Fisher; Daniel E. Ho; Jacob Goldin. Publication

“Government agencies around the world use data-driven algorithms to allocate enforcement resources. Even when such algorithms are formally neutral with respect to protected characteristics like race, there is widespread concern that they can disproportionately burden vulnerable groups. We study differences in Internal Revenue Service (IRS) audit rates between Black and non-Black taxpayers. Because neither we nor the IRS observe taxpayer race, we employ a novel partial identification strategy to estimate these differences. Despite race-blind audit selection, we find that Black taxpayers are audited at 2.9 to 4.7 times the rate of non-Black taxpayers. The main source of the disparity is differing audit rates by race among taxpayers claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Using counterfactual audit selection models, we find that maximizing the detection of underreported taxes would not lead to Black taxpayers being audited at higher rates. In contrast, certain policies tend to increase the audit rate of Black taxpayers: (1) designing audit selection algorithms to minimize the “no-change rate”; (2) targeting erroneously claimed refundable credits rather than total under-reporting; and (3) limiting the share of more complex EITC returns that can be selected for audit. Our results highlight how seemingly technocratic choices about algorithmic design can embed important policy values and trade-offs.”

Experian Glitch Exposing Credit Files Lasted 47 Days

Krebs on Security: “On Dec. 23, 2022, KrebsOnSecurity alerted big-three consumer credit reporting bureau Experian that identity thieves had worked out how to bypass its security and access any consumer’s full credit report — armed with nothing more than a person’s name, address, date of birth, and Social Security number. Experian fixed the glitch, but… Continue Reading

Time Savings When Working from Home

NBER – Time Savings When Working from Home – Cevat Giray Aksoy, Jose Maria Barrero, Nicholas Bloom, Steven J. Davis, Mathias Dolls & Pablo Zarate. Working Paper 30866. DOI 10.3386/w30866. Issue Date January 2023. “We quantify the commute time savings associated with work from home, drawing on data for 27 countries. The average daily time… Continue Reading

NIST Artificial Intelligence Risk Management Framework

NIST AI 100-1 Artificial Intelligence Risk Management Framework (AI RMF 1.0) January 2023 – “…As directed by the National Artificial Intelligence Initiative Act of 2020 (P.L. 116-283), the goal of the AI RMF is to offer a resource to the organizations designing, developing, deploying, or using AI systems to help manage the many risks of… Continue Reading

OpenAI has hired an army of contractors to make basic coding obsolete

Semafor: “OpenAI, the company behind the chatbot ChatGPT, has ramped up its hiring around the world, bringing on roughly 1,000 remote contractors over the past six months in regions like Latin America and Eastern Europe, according to people familiar with the matter. About 60% of the contractors were hired to do what’s called “data labeling”… Continue Reading

Layoffs by Email Show What Employers Really Think of Their Workers

The New York Times: “…As someone who’s managed people in newsrooms and digital start-ups and has hired and fired people in various capacities for the last 21 years, I think this approach is not just cruel but unnecessary. It’s reasonable to terminate access to company systems, but delivering the news with no personal human contact… Continue Reading

Spontaneous Norms in Law and Economics: A Sketch Typology

Zdybel, Karol B. (2023) : Spontaneous Norms in Law and Economics: A Sketch Typology, ILE Working Paper Series, No. 66, University of Hamburg, Institute of Law and Economics (ILE), Hamburg. European Doctorate in Law and Economics. “This article offers a concise typology of spontaneous norms – i.e., norms that are formed or sustained through decentralized… Continue Reading

FTX creditor list shows airlines, charities and tech firms caught in collapse

Coin Telegraph: “The over 100-page long document lists every entity FTX owes money to, from Big Tech players to local businesses near its Bahamian headquarters. A complete list of the creditors owed money by the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX has been released, revealing a myriad of companies and government entities wrapped up in its collapse.… Continue Reading

Four Ways Leaders Can Empower People for How Work Gets Done

Microsoft: “Fraying supply chains. Economic headwinds. Changing expectations around hybrid work. The rapid transformations of the past few years have fundamentally reshaped work and life as we know them. It’s clear that the agility and resilience of every organization rest on a workforce empowered with tools that enable them to work more efficiently and flexibly… Continue Reading

Would Chat GPT3 Get a Wharton MBA? A Prediction Based on Its Performance in the Operations Management Course

Christian Terwiesch, “Would Chat GPT3 Get a Wharton MBA? A Prediction Based on Its Performance in the Operations Management Course”, Mack Institute for Innovation Management at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, 2023. “OpenAI’s Chat GPT has shown a remarkable ability to automate some of the skills of highly compensated knowledge workers in general and… Continue Reading