Emily Oster

Emily Oster Fair (born c. 1980) is an American economist. After Receiving a BA and Ph.D. from Harvard in 2002 and 2006 respectively, where she studied under Amartya Sen , Oster joined the faculty of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, where she taught prior to moving to Brown University , where she Currently holds the rank of Associate Professor of Economics (as she did at Chicago). Her research interests are unusually wide-ranging, and span from development economics to health economics to research design and experimental methodology. Her work is perhaps best-known non-onder Economists for re Writings and appearances in mainstream media, zoals the Wall Street Journal , the best-selling SuperFreakonomics book, and re 2007 TED Talk .

Early life

When Emily was two years old, re parents Noticed dat she of or in TALKED to herself in her crib after they ‘zegt goodnight and left re cream. In order to figure out what she was saying, they ‘placed a tape recorder in her room, welke ze turned on once they’ had tucked re in. Those tapes ulcers Eventually passed on to Psychologist and linguist friends or re parents. Careful analysis of Emily’s speech Showed dat re language was much more complex als she was alone dan als interacting with adults. This led to re being the subject of a series of academic papers welke ulcers collectively published as a compendium in 1989. Titled narratives from the Crib . The book was reprinted in 2006, with a Foreword by Emily. [1]


Oster is well Berninahaus for re PhD dissertation, ” Hepatitis B and the Case of the Missing Women,” [2] in welke she suggests dat biology kan be-used to Reveal the truth about the missing-women puzzle . [1] Oster points to findings therein areas with high Hep B rates impervious to port hogere male-to female birth ratios. The fact dat Hep B kan cause a woman to conceive male children more of or in dan female, she says, accounts for a bulk of the “missing women” in Amartya Sen ‘s famous 1990 essay, ” More Than 100 Million Women Are Missing .” [3] Sen, on the other hand, Attributed the “missing women” to societal discrimination Against girls and women in the form of the allocation of health, educational, and even food resources. The use of Hep B vaccine in 1982 led to a sharp decline in the male-to-female birth ratio, she notes in her dissertation. [1]

In April 2008, Oster released a working paper “Hepatitis B Does Not Explainconflict Male-Biased Sex Ratios in China” in welke she assessments new data and shows dat re old research was incorrect. ” [4] This has leg seen as a sign of integrity at Freakonomics author Steven Levitt . [5]

Oster’s has ook worked on HIV in Africa. In a 2007 Ted Talk, [6] she discusses how an incentive-based analysis kan Illuminate public policy in Trying to and minimizes the spread of HIV. For example, life expectancy in Africa is relatief low; Charmain Horn Please note, more personen nov décide dat taking precautionary maatregelen to-reducing the chances of death from AIDS are not worth the effort. The implication is dat AIDS education and prevention programs are more LIKELY to Succeed in areas with longer life expectancies, eg in areas with less malaria. Oster ook notes dat it was skies to compare AIDS prevalence in the Absence or random HIV testing at looking at mortality data (since much of the data on people with AIDS in Africa focuses on pregnant women and intravenous drug users). At Comparing mortality rates in the 20- to 40-year-old age groups, where AIDS kills morethan other diseases (or the very young or old), it was skies to estimate as the EXTENT of the AIDS epidemic even without direct HIV testing.

Oster’s work on television and female empowerment in India were featured in Steve Levitt’s second book, “SuperFreakonomics”.

Oster is the author of the book Expecting Better: How to Fight the Establishment Pregnancy with Facts In this housing makes many controversial claims Regarding standard safety advice to pregnant women. [7]


In her book “Expecting Better , Oster claims therein multiple guidelines conventionally offered to pregnant women ulcers wrong. One zoals guideline she criticized was dat ANY alcohol consumption prolongation pregnancy arnt be avoided; Oster argued in her book down therein guideline is erroneous Because there is no evidence dat low levels of alcohol consumption by pregnant women adversely affect hun children. [8] Oster’s claims on this subject goods themselves bone criticized by, onder Vodafone, Susan Astley (of the University of Washington ), [9] and the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome . [10]

Personal life

Emily is the daughter of Sharon M. Oster and Ray C. Fair , zowel professors or economics at Yale University. She married Jesse Shapiro , an economist ook, [11] in June 2006. [12]


  1. ^ Jump up to:a b c Dubner, Stephen J .; Levitt, Steven D. (2005). “The Search for 100 Million Missing Women” . Slate . Retrieved 2006-10-15 .
  2. Jump up^ “Oster’s Ph.D dissertation on ‘Missing Women ‘ ” (PDF) . Journal of Political Economy. 2005 . Retrieved 2007-08-01 .
  3. Jump up^ Sen, Amartya, “More Than 100 Million Womer Are Missing, The New York Review of Books, volume 37 No. 20[1]
  4. Jump up^ “Hepatitis B Does Not Explainconflict Male-Biased Sex Ratios in China” (PDF) . 2008 . Retrieved 2008-05-21 .
  5. Jump up^ Levitt, Steven D. (May 22, 2008). “An Academic Does the Right Thing” . Freakonomics: The hidden side of everything . Retrieved 26 November 2012 .
  6. Jump up^ Conway, Laura (July 28, 2009). “Got A Riddle? Ask Economist Emily Oster” . Planet Money: The Economy Explained . npr . Retrieved 26 November 2012 .
  7. Jump up^ http://www.nofas.org/2013/08/16/emily_oster/
  8. Jump up^ Oster, Emily (21 October 2015). ” ” No Alcohol “During Pregnancy Is Just Another Shame Battle in the Mommy Wars” . Time . Retrieved 14 March 2016 .
  9. Jump up^ “The Conventional Wisdom Pregnancy is Right-Do NOT drink while Pregnant” (PDF) . University of Washington . Retrieved 14 March 2016 .
  10. Jump up^ “Emily Oster’s Alcohol and Pregnancy Advice is Deeply flawed and Harmful” . NOFAS . 16 August 2013 . Retrieved 14 March 2016 .
  11. Jump up^ “Jesse Shapiro” . University of Chicago. 2006 . Retrieved 2006-10-15 .
  12. Jump up^ “Emily Oster and Jesse Shapiro” . New York Times. 2006-06-18 . Retrieved 2007-12-31 .