Student Research

Through the generous contributions of supporters, foundations and alumni the Department of Economics is able to offer the following competition and scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students. In all cases, students must be officially declared economics majors and in good standing.

The Department of Economics currently runs two research competitions for students. Papers must be developed under the guidance of an SJSU Economics faculty member, and must be examples of academic economics research.

Semiannual Best Paper Proposal Competitions

At the end of each semester, students may submit an original scholarly paper they have produced. A committee of current economics faculty will be assembled to judge the submissions. Each semester we will plan to make six awards total, with three awards (First, Second, Third) in two categories: undergraduate and graduate. Submissions are due on the dates listed in the table below.  

To apply, complete the Application Form and email your completed research paper in PDF format to the director of the research and proposal competitions, currently
Dr. Matthew Holian.

Apply via GoogleDocs
Best Paper / Proposal Competition Application Form.

Dr. Matthew Holian
Director, Research and Proposal Competitions 

Competition Deadline Award (anticpated)
Fall Competition December 18th First prize $1,500,
Second prize $1,000
Third prize $500
For both UGrad and Grad
Spring Competition May 17th First prize $1,500,
Second prize $1,000
Third prize $500
For both UGrad and Grad

Winners will be invited to present their research at the Annual Economics Award Ceremony during the Spring semester, and are invited to present their work at the annual meetings of the Association for Private Enterprise Education in either the undergraduate poster competition or in a graduate student session. Winners will be awarded scholarships to help defray the cost of attending. Past meetings have been held in Las Vegas, Maui, Bahamas, Cancun, among others. Students must be 21 years of age by the start of the conference to attend.

Spring 2020 Awards

Best Paper, Graduate Student Winner:

Kevin Kan "The Effect of TV Ratings on Major League Baseball Franchises"

Best Paper, Undergraduate Student Winner:

First: Anahita Biglari "Son Preference in the US"
Second: Mai Vu "Does climate or earnings affect the migration decision of college graduates?"
Third: Elizabeth Hartsog "Comparing the Effect of Obamacare and Romneycare on Uninsurance Rates and Insurance Premiums"

Best 100w Paper

Bianca Nigri - The Benefits of Legalizing Drugs in Latin American Countries

Best Lower Division Paper

Victor Liu "Minimum Wage: What's the Limit?"

Fall 2019 Best Paper Awards

Undergraduate Student Winner:

Austin Tse “Using Monte Carlo Simulation to Evaluate Optimal Investment Strategies”

Spring 2019 Best Paper Awards

Graduate Student Winners:

Sharika Rakibullah "The Impact of Arizona Senate Bill 1070 on Crimes in Arizona"
Rosalyn Hua "Impact of the 2015 Amendment to HSC § 1280.15 on Data Breach Fines"
Alexandra Voight "The Dot Com Boom, Bust, and the Tech Wage Premium"

Undergraduate Student Winners:

Theo Dubus "Black Fool’s Gold: The Venezuelan Economic Crisis and Government Over-reliance on Oil"
Eric Duong "U.S. Physician Shortage: A Misallocation Issue?"
Austin Tse "Determinants of Attractiveness in the Dating Market"

Fall 2018 Best Paper Awards

Graduate Student Winners:

Anteneh Ayele "Willingness to Pay and Energy Efficiency"
Sharika Rakibullah "The Persistence of Sex Preferences in the US"
Rosalyn Hua "Asian American Women: Did the Great Recession Cause Childness"

Undergraduate Student Winners:

Anahito Biglari "Antoine Augustine Cournot: The Inception of Mathematical Economics"
Amar Pal and Henry Pineda "Why Institutions Matter: Analyzing the Relationship Between Economic Freedom and Standard of Living" 
Abdemer Gonzalez "Immigration and Its Impact on Earnings in America: An Analysis in the Construction Industry"

Spring 2018 Annual Best Paper Proposal Winners

Mikhail Arbuzov Estimated Dynamic Equilibrium Model: Supply and Demand as a Sample Path of a Stochastic Process?”
Alexander P. San Filippo "The Introduction of Private Prisons and Incarceration Rates"

Fall 2017 Semiannual Best Proposal Winners

Graduate Student Winners:

Allan Wheeler ”Equilibrium, Entrepreneurship, and Economic Calculation: Implications for Urban Economic Development”
Noe Vidales and Gregory Wong “Public Policy and the Marital Decisions of the Indigenous Population of Mexico”

Undergraduate Student Winners:

Christina Sawyer “How Would Seattle’s Minimum Wage Policy Impact San Jose’s Citizens with Barriers to Employment?”
Luca Pasquini “Market Impacts of Cyber Attacks”
Eshan Jain “What Makes a Non-Profit Organization More Profitable?”