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Faculty of Arts
UNB Fredericton

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Economics research

Faculty members in the Department of Economics have diverse research interests in a wide range of research areas.


Macroeconomics studies economies of countries in the aggregate form and also investigates economic interaction between countries. One central question of macroeconomics is to find a balance between efficiency and equality, for the purpose of proposing policies regarding both objectives.

Mehmet Dalkir currently investigates progress of distribution of wealth in North America and the determinants of growing wealth dispersion. Dr. Dalkir also answers the question why economic fluctuations in different countries seem to move more and more in synchrony, although financial and trade links are not necessarily improving.

Tony Myatt examines macroeconomic stabilization policy, multiple equilibria and unemployment.

Murshed Chowdhury examines the flow of goods and services across countries and the challenges associated with these flows. Many developing countries receive a significant amount of remittances from developed/high-income countries. Dr. Chowdhury studies the impact of these flows on economic growth in developing countries.

Applied microeconomics

Applied microeconomics is the application of economic theory and econometrics to address practical issues in a range of areas including labour, education, industrial organization, public, health and environmental economics. For example, Weiqiu Yu and Phil Leonard, along with a graduate student, are working on the correlation between environmental factors and conduct disorder among Canadian children.

Health economics

Health economics concerns itself with the study of how human behaviours and government policies impact the health of individuals. For example, Phil Leonard studies the impact of how school nutrition policies impact student’s weight and health. Dr. Leonard also studies the relationship between characteristics and pay structures of health professionals and the outcomes of their patients.

Mike Farnworth studies the formation of addictions and their impacts on human health. Dr. Farnworth also analyzes wait times in the health care system.

Barry Watson specializes in health and labour. Dr. Watson has published in several highly recognized journals including Social Science & Medicine and the Review of Income and Wealth.

Labour economics

Labour economics is a broad field, which studies how we work and how we are paid. This can include the study of employment and unemployment, wages and the growth of human capital. Phil Leonard measures how policies in the education system impact student outcomes.

The unemployment rate varies during recessions and booms. Murshed Chowdhury studies risk-sharing of unemployment across Canadian provinces.

Barry Watson specializes in health and labour. Dr. Watson has published in several highly recognized journals including Social Science & Medicine and the Review of Income and Wealth.

Immigration economics

Immigration economics is a branch of labour economics that considers the experiences of immigrants in their host country and the impact of immigration on current residents of the host country. Topics include the earnings, unemployment experiences, service use, educational outcomes, health, mobility and retention of immigrants as well as the experiences of second generation immigrants.

Murshed Chowdhury is examining the internal mobility and integration process of different cohorts of immigrants to Canada.

Corporate governance

There are many stakeholders of a company such as shareholders, management, customers, financiers and entire community. Corporate governance examines relevant policy and regulations which balance the interests of companies’ stakeholders. Elif Dalkir and Mehmet Dalkir study the policy and regulations for corporate mergers and acquisitions.

Game theory

Game theory is a subject of pure mathematics which is most widely applied to the theory of microeconomics and political science. It is a tool to analyze collective decision-making process. Elif Dalkir studies the conditions under which the equilibrium in voting games is unique.

Economics of climate change, environment and natural resource economics

Environment and natural resource economics aim to understand the connections and interdependence between human economies and natural ecosystems and to provide guidance in developing and managing environmental and natural assets. Global climate change poses a threat to the well-being of humans, ecosystem functioning, biodiversity, capital productivity and human health. Climate change economics attends to this issue by offering theoretical insights and empirical findings relevant to the design of policies to reduce, avoid, or adapt to climate change.

In this regard, Yuri Yevdokimov has done empirical analysis in this field studying impacts of climate change on regional development in general and the regional transportation network in Atlantic Canada in particular. His economic analysis improves our understanding of the costs of climate change impacts at a regional level.

Van Lantz studies the economic impacts of climate change on regional economies, the costs and benefits of implementing forest management strategies and the valuation of ecosystem services.

Regional economics

Regional economics investigates the variation in economic structures and conditions across subnational economies to develop an understanding of regional economic disparities in incomes and growth for the purpose of identifying policy options for improving regional economic performance.

Social policy, social economy and political economy

Luc Thériault’s research interests are centered on the study of social policy and the social economy. Social policy is an interdisciplinary field (combining sociology, politics and economics) that studies how society as a whole and governments in particular, promotes the welfare of individuals and families and address issues of social justice. The social economy is a third sector of mixed capitalist economies distinct from the for-profit and the public sectors. The social economy is based on co-operatives, non-profits, charities and a variety of social purpose enterprises.

Tony Myatt studies the area of political economy, in particular, how economic power influences political regulation of the economy.

Development economics

The challenges facing by developing countries are different than high income OECD countries. How the flow of finances to the developing countries influence the livelihood of people is important area of Murshed Chowdhury’s research.

Economic education

The study of economic education concerns itself with how we teach economics, including what we teach, why we teach it and how we teach it. Tony Myatt examines the subtle (and not so subtle) ideological biases in economic theory.

Research institutes and data repositories

New Brunswick Institute for Research, Data and Training

Professors within the Economics Department are affiliated with several research institutes on campus. The New Brunswick Institute for Research, Data and Training (NB-IRDT) at UNB’s Fredericton campus is a provincial research data centre and data custodian which hosts pseudo-anonymized person level administrative data on NB residents and makes that data available for policy-relevant research.

NB-IRDT operates at arms’ length from government, to provide unbiased, scientific results on questions related to health and social issues that are vital to the prosperity for current and future New Brunswickers.

New Brunswick Research Data Centre

Researchers can also make use of the New Brunswick Research Data Centre, which houses individual-level data (such as the Census or Labour Force Survey) from Statistics Canada.

Archived working papers

The department’s archived working papers are also available through the university library.