The Barbour Scholar community is a prestigious group of people. This year, eight amazing students have been added, including U-M Economics PhD student Pinghui Wu.
“Like their predecessors, today’s scholars continue to tackle major issues across policy, education, public health, medicine, engineering, and many other fields, in the midst of modern challenges,” wrote Rackham Graduate School in their piece “100 Years of Barbour Scholars: Introducing the 2017-2018 Cohort.”
Pinghui Wu (Taiwan) is a Ph.D. student in Social Work and Economics. Tentatively titled “Job opportunity, mobility, and the adjustment paths for import-competing workers,” Pinghui's dissertation research seeks to identify the barriers to mobility for disadvantaged workers who have lost their jobs due to the competition of imported goods from low-wage countries. While previous research has shown that low mobility is a major cause for long-term income loss for these workers, the exact factors contributing to their low mobility are yet to be identified, both geographically and sectorally. The paper would be the first to consider and model how local industrial composition constrains the job-switching behavior of import-competing workers, and to quantify the factors contributing to the barriers to their mobility and to outline concrete policy implications for the current Trade Adjustment Assistance program to re-connect workers with economic opportunities.