LSU Professors explore link between Politics and Entrepreneurship

April 5, 2019


Louis-Philippe Beland and Bulent Unel

BATON ROUGE Louis-Philippe Beland, assistant professor, and Bulent Unel, associate professor and director of Graduate Studies – PhD Program, in the Department of Economics at LSU’s E. J. Ourso College of Business, recently published a research paper exploring politics and entrepreneurship in the United States in the Canadian Journal of Economics.

The paper, Politics and entrepreneurship in the US,  investigated the causal impact of partisan commitment of governors on entrepreneurial activity since both parties claim that they have policies that are more conducive for business activity. Republicans complain about high tax rates imposed on American firms, whereas Democrats claim that they have fought to remove barriers that stand in the way of businesses, helping small businesses especially.

“There is a strong belief that Republicans are more pro-business than Democrats,” said Bulent Unel. “Indeed, during the 2016 presidential election, Republican candidates criticized the Obama Administration for being anti-business. We investigated this common belief by rigorously exploiting variations in entrepreneurial activity across states over a period between 1980--2014. We found that Republican governors are no different from Democratic governors in their effects on entrepreneurship.”


About the Department of Economics

The Department of Economics at LSU’s E. J. Ourso College of Business offers courses that provide it's undergraduate and graduate students an intellectual challenge and strong analytic training and the tools to understand the economic and social problems faced both domestically and internationally. The numerous awards received and peer-reviewed
Bulent Unel scholarly articles published in high-quality economic journals demonstrates the faculty’s commitment to quality teaching and research. For more information, visit our home page or call 225-578-5211.

About the E. J. Ourso College of Business

Since its establishment in 1928, the E. J. Ourso College of Business has continuously improved and expanded its offerings for students and alumni. Additionally, the college has made it a priority to provide its faculty with the resources it needs to further research in every aspect of the business world and to produce industry leaders for a global work environment. For more news and information about the E. J. Ourso College, visit our home page..

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Elizabeth Eaton
E. J. Ourso College of Business