I am broadly interested in the economic history of Eastern Europe in the late 19th and 20th centuries. My current research agenda is to explore growth, innovation and development patterns to build a picture of how this understudied region fared in recent history as a result of different political shocks, and possibly to evaluate paths forward.

Peer-Reviewed Publications

“Modernization in Progress: Part-Year Operation, Capital Accumulation, and Labor Force Composition in Late Imperial Russia” (with Amanda Gregg) [2022, Journal of Economic History] [Link

Runner-up for Arthur H. Cole Prize in Journal of Economic History for the best article in the previous year's volume (2023).

Abstract: This paper investigates  part-year factory  operation, a common but understudied dimension ofindustrializing  economies, in a prototypical late-industrializing setting that offers rich factory-level data: Imperial Russia.Newly compiled data provides detailed descriptions of all Russian manufacturing firms operating in 1894 and shows that factories operating a greater number of annual working days were more mechanized, more urban, more likely to employ women and children, more productive, and more likely to survive. Rather than arguing that part-year operation demonstrated Russia’s uniquely inexorable backwardness, we stress operating time’s relationship to fundamental drivers of growth including urbanization, geography, and institutions. 

Working Papers

Gender discrimination in infancy and childhood during the 1891 Russian Famine” (with Viktor Malein and Francisco J. Beltrán Tapia)

Abstract: This article examines the impact of the 1891 Russian famine on the sex specific mortality of boys and girls. Contrary to the previous literature that stresses the male vulnerability in harsh environments, our results show that famine disproportionally affected mortality among girls. This result suggests that gender discriminatory practices that prioritized boys compensated the male vulnerability. Further, we derive an explicit measure of female discrimination based on oral traditions (folklore) of specific ethnic groups at the district level. We demonstrate that exposure to the famine results in a relatively larger number of “missing” girls in the areas where oral traditions tend to depict women as submissive. We conclude that the impact of environmental shocks such as famine on mortality is not gender-neutral and reflects the deep-rooted stereotypes of gender roles and status.

Works In Progress

“Fertility and Child Mortality in Late Imperial Russia” 

“Cultural Links and Technology Diffusion: Evidence from Industry in Late Imperial Russia” with Timur Natkhov

"Improvements in Urban Sanitation and Child Mortality Decline: the case of the Russian Empire" with Viktor Malein