Hernán Barahona is a PhD student in economics at Stanford University. His main research interests lie in the fields of public economics, development economics, and industrial organization, with a special interest in evaluating government interventions and understanding the organizational structure of the state and its interactions with the private sector. He is currently working on projects in Brazil, Chile, the Dominican Republic, and the United States. Barahona holds a BS in Engineering from Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and an MA in Economics from the same institution.
Government plays a major role in facilitating development. Naturally, its ability to provide public goods is tied to the employees hired in the public sector. Developing an understanding of the incentives and selection method of these employees is essential to studying state performance. In this project we aim to exploit quasi-experimental evidence from Brazilian government’s public employee admission exam to analyze: i) the existence of a wage differential between private and public sector jobs, and ii) how this wage premium, if it exists, drives the selection mechanism of individuals into government positions.