September 24, 2020 - 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM Eastern Time (ET)

Understanding the Economic and Environmental Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Event Description:

This webinar brings together the authors of two CEEPR working papers evaluating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic through use of empirical data. The first paper correlates county-level COVID-19 death rates with key variables – such as socio-economic variables, county-level health variables, modes of commuting, and pollution patterns – to reveal a number of significant correlations. The second paper juxtaposes the short- and long-run effects of the pandemic on energy and the environment, showing that the positive effects of short-run emission reductions can be outweighed by the negative long-run effect of a slowdown in clean energy innovation and investment. Both papers will be presented by one of their authors, followed by a moderated discussion with the audience.


Christopher Knittel

Christopher R. Knittel is the George P. Shultz Professor of Applied Economics at the Sloan School of Management, Director of the Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research, and Deputy Director for Policy of the Energy Initiative at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He joined the faculty at MIT in 2011, having taught previously at UC Davis and Boston University. Professor Knittel received his B.A. in economics and political science from the California State University, Stanislaus in 1994 (summa cum laude), an M.A. in economics from UC Davis in 1996, and a Ph.D. in economics from UC Berkeley in 1999. His research focuses on environmental economics, industrial organization, and applied econometrics. He is a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research in the Productivity, Industrial Organization, and Energy and Environmental Economics groups.
Jing Li
MIT Jing Li holds the William Barton Rogers Career Development Chair of Energy Economics at the MIT Sloan School of Management. From 2017-2018, Jing Li was a Postdoctoral Associate of the MIT Energy Initiative. Jing’s research interests lie in energy economics and industrial organization, focusing on development and adoption of new technologies. Her most recent work examines compatibility and investment in electric vehicle recharging networks in the United States, and cost pass-through in the E85 retail market. Jing received her B.Sc. in Mathematics, Computer Science, and Economics from MIT in 2011, and her Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard in 2017.
John Parsons

John Parsons is a Senior Lecturer at MIT’s Sloan School of Management and Associate Director of the MIT Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research (CEEPR). His research focuses on the valuation and financing of investments in energy markets, as well as the problems of risk in energy and environment markets. Recent publications have touched on the value of changing the utilization of transmission to maximize the value of hydro assets and expanded penetration of renewables, the value of investments in life extensions of nuclear power plants, the economics of new microreactors, and the impact of decarbonization on generation assets in the U.S. midcontinent.