ECON 43550: Economics of the Family

Professor Kasey Buckles

Click here to go to Kasey Buckles' homepage.

Welcome to the website for Economics of the Family at the University of Notre Dame, Fall 2013.

You can find important class materials here, as well as links to useful and interesting web sites.


Link to Sakai for handing in assignments

Class Topics, Handouts and Slides, and Links to Papers



Handouts and Slides

Required Readings


Aug. 27

Family Stats


  Models of Marriage

Sept. 3 & 5


Stevenson and Wolfers 2007

  Marriage and Divorce

Sept. 10, 12, 17, & 19

McKinnish Slides, Ribar Slides, Korenman and Neumark Slides, Dahl Slides

McKinnish 2007, Ribar 2004, Korenman and Neumark 1991, Popular Press

  Models of Fertility

Sept. 24 & 26



  Empirical Studies of Fertility and Family Structure

Oct. 1, 3, 8, & 10

ALS Slides, BDS Slides, Buckles & Munnich Slides, Sacerdote Slides

Black, Devereux, and Salvanes 2005, Buckles and Munnich 2012, Sacerdote 2007, Popular Press

  Research Project Work

Oct. 15 & 17

  Family and Women's Work

Oct. 29 & 31, Nov. 5 & 7

Waldfogel 1998a Slides, Waldfogel 1998b Slides

Goldin 2004, Belkin 2003 (NYT), Boushey 2005, Cohany and Sok 2007, Waldfogel 1998a, Waldfogel 1998b


Nov. 12

  Computer Lab, Produce/Discuss Tables

Nov. 14 & 19

  Public Policy and the Family

Nov. 21 & 26

Bailey/GLS Slides, BGP Slides

Bailey 2010, Gruber, Levine, and Staiger 1999, Buckles, Guldi, and Price 2011

  Trends in Fertility

Dec. 3 & 5

Albanesi & Olivetti Slides, BIR 2012 Slides

Albanesi and Olivetti 2009, Berman, Iannaccone, and Ragusa 2012.

  Rough Drafts, Presentations of Research

Dec. 10 & 12



Handouts & Assignments 

How to Read Empirical Research Papers - This guide should help you as you learn the skill of reading papers 

Homework 1 - For this assignment (due Sept. 12), you will need the data set cps89_premium.dta. The do-file used to create it is here: This will help you figure out how the variables are coded. Please submit via Sakai.  Update 9/17: Solutions to Homework 1 are here:, hw1.log.

Homework 2 - Due Sept. 19. Please submit via Sakai.  Update 9/26: Solutions to Homework 2 are here:, hw2.log.

Homework 3 - Due Oct. 3. Please hand in a hard copy in class. Update 10/14: Solutions to Homework 3 are here: hw3_soln.pdf.

Practice Midterm The midterm is in class on November 12. Solutions here.

Stata Info/Help

Important Things to Know about Stata - A mini-manual for getting started with Stata. This should be a great resource for you.  

This is my log file from the Stata review session on Sept. 10.  

Here is the .do file I used in class on 10/8 to produce results from the spacing paper, and here is the data set. 

Stata - This is a link to Stata's webpage. Stata/IC 13 (recommended) can be bought at a highly discounted rate through GradPlan. The cost is $69 for six months, $98 for a year, or $189 for a perpetual license. To access GradPlan, go to this page

Stata is installed in all classrooms and clusters on campus. Here is a link to OIT services. But note that they will not be able to help you with programming in Stata! 

Class Project

Don't forget the project is due at the beginning of class on Thursday, Dec. 12--NO EXCEPTIONS!

You will also be required to present your work in class on Dec. 12. Details on the presentation will come later in the semester.

  Research Paper Guidelines

  Sample Outline

  Sample Paper from previous semester.

Assorted Links

  Homepage for the Department of Economics at Notre Dame.

  Link to Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts, Undergraduate Resources

  Information on the Bernoulli Prize (up to $5000!)

  Link to Current Population Survey-IPUMS.

  Link to NLSY-79.

Reading List

Here is a list of books you might find interesting if you enjoy creative emipirical economics. I haven't read all of these, so I can't guarantee satisfaction. They were chosen because they tackle everyday issues from an economics, econometrics, or statistics perspective, in a beach-read kind of way. Please let me know if you have other suggestions that I can pass along to your classmates. Happy reading!

The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail--But Some Don't, by Nate Silver



Armchair Economist: Economics and Everyday Experience

Hidden Order: The Economics of Everyday Life

A Random Walk Down Wall Street


Bringing Down The House: The Inside Story of Six MIT Students Who Took Vegas for Millions