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LSU Today Flagship Faculty
What was your previous position and where?I joined LSU right after completing my Ph.D. from Virginia Tech in Fall 2000.
What brought you to LSU?The research environment in the economics department was exciting. The graduate program involves teaching core courses for several departments like finance, accounting and agricultural economics, providing opportunities for inter-disciplinary interaction. Furthermore, the university seemed committed to making additional resources available to increase the departmentís national standing.
What is your research interest?My primary research interest lies in network formation, i.e., how social and economic networks emerge from the actions of rational self interested individuals, including questions about their stability, existence and social optimality. Additionally, I am interested in development economics, particularly child labor and microfinance. Currently, I am also working in experimental economics, where we pay subjects to make salient decisions.
What do you hope to accomplish at LSU?Through my research, I hope to make LSU more visible at the national and international levels.
What do you enjoy most about LSU?The big sprawling campus with its oak trees, the proximity to the lake and of course the indomitable spirit of the LSU Tigers. The university itself provides a stimulating research environment and the aspiration to continuously raise standards, which makes it worthwhile being here.
What are your major accomplishments?During my time at LSU, I have received grants from NSF, NIH, DARPA and the DHS, which has helped in graduate supporting students and producing a fair amount of research. I have also stimulated undergraduate students to publish papers and become interested in game theory. Recently I got an e-mail from some former undergraduate students who, while visiting a bar in New York, ended up having a somewhat confused discussion about game theory. Their e-mail thanking me for creating such a lasting interest in game theory definitely felt like a major accomplishment.