Jessica Wolpaw Reyes

Curriculum Vitae


Contact Information

Department of Economics
Amherst College
Amherst, MA 01002
Office Phone: (413) 542-8517
Email: jwreyes at


Academic Positions

Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts (2002-present)
Chair of Department of Economics (2012-present)
Associate Professor of Economics (2009-present)
Assistant Professor of Economics (2002-2009)
Environmental Studies Faculty (2007-present)

University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas (2003-2004)
Assistant Professor of Economics

National Bureau of Economic Research, Cambridge, Massachusetts (2001-2002)
Post-Doctoral Fellow in Aging and Health Economics



Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts (1997-2002)
Ph.D. in Economics, June 2002
Dissertation: “The Impact of Lead Exposure on Crime and Health, and an Analysis of the Market for Physicians”
Nominated for Wells Dissertation Prize.

University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England (1994-1995)
Diploma in Mathematical Statistics, June 1995
Diploma Project: “Causes and Correlates of Juvenile Delinquency in Young Males”
Winston Churchill Scholar.  Loeb Scholar.  Alpha Diploma Project. 

Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts (1990-1994)
Bachelor of Arts summa cum laude in Mathematics, Chemistry, and Interdisciplinary Studies.  Phi Beta Kappa.


Published Work

“Reaching Equilibrium in the Market for Obstetricians and Gynecologists,” American Economic Review, 97:2, May 2007.

“Environmental Policy as Social Policy? The Impact of Childhood Lead Exposure on Crime,” B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis and Policy, 7:1 (Contributions), October 2007.

“Gender Preference and Equilibrium in the Imperfectly Competitive Market for Physician Services,” Eastern Economic Journal, 34:3, June 2008.

“Gender Gaps in Income and Productivity of Obstetricians and Gynecologists,” Obstetrics and Gynecology, 109:5, May 2007.

“College Financial Aid Rules and the Allocation of Savings,” Education Economics, 16:2, June 2008.

“Teaching the Art of Economic Research in a Senior Seminar,” The American Economist, 15:2, Fall 2010.

“The Effect of Malpractice Liability on Obstetrics and Gynecology: Taking the Measure of a Crisis,” with Rene Reyes, New England Law Review, 47:315, 2012.


Working Papers

“Childhood Lead and Academic Performance in Massachusetts,” New England Public Policy Center Working Paper 11-3, August 2011.

“Lead Exposure and Behavior: Effects on Aggression and Risky Behavior among Children and Adolescents,” in submission.

“Lead Exposure, Academic Performance, and Labor Market Performance”


Other Published Work

“Lead Exposure and Academic Performance,” Communities and Banking Magazine, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Winter 2012.

“Review of Troesken’s The Great Lead Water Pipe Disaster,” Journal of Economic History, 67:3, September 2007.

“Lead,” Encyclopedia of Environment and Society. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2007.

“The Clean Air Act,” Encyclopedia of Environment and Society.  Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2007.


Professional Activities

Faculty Research Fellow, National Bureau of Economic Research, 2006-present.

Referee. Quarterly Journal of Economics, Journal of Political Economy, Journal of Human Resources, Journal of Public Economics, American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Journal of Labor Research, Journal of Health Economics, Health Affairs, Health Economics, NeuroToxicology, B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis and Policy, Journal of the European Economic Association, Eastern Economic Journal, The American Economist, National Tax Journal.

Member. American Economic Association, American Society of Health Economists, Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, Committee on the Status of Women in the Economics Profession, Eastern Economic Association, National Tax Association, American Association of University Women, Association for Public Policy Analysis & Management.

Media Coverage.  Articles citing research papers have been circulated in numerous news outlets both within the United States and internationally.  Outlets include: BBC News, The Chicago Tribune, Discovery News, The Economist, The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine, The Wall Street Journal.


Grants, Awards, and Fellowships

2010-2011 Visiting Scholar, New England Public Policy Center, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston
2009 Curricular Development Grant, Dayton Fund for Environmental Science, Amherst College
2008 Pilot Project, National Institute on Aging, National Bureau of Economic Research
2005, 2007 Curricular Development Grant, Dayton Fund for Environmental Science, Amherst College
2004 Summer Research Assignment, University of Texas at Austin
2003, 2005 Pilot Project, National Institute on Aging, National Bureau of Economic Research
2001 – 2002 Post-Doctoral Fellow in Aging and Health Economics, National Bureau of Economic Research
1998 – 2001 Inequality and Social Policy Program Doctoral Fellow, Wiener Center for Social Policy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
1999 - 2000 Pre-Doctoral Fellow in Aging and Health Economics, National Bureau of Economic Research
1997 - 2001 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, Harvard University
1997 Harvard University Economics Department Prize Fellowship, Harvard University
1997 Rufus B. Kellogg Graduate Fellowship, Amherst College
1994 - 1995 Winston Churchill Foundation Scholar, Cambridge University, Cambridge England
1993 Phi Beta Kappa, Amherst College



Lead and Crime.  Society of Labor Economists Annual Meeting, May 2006. Rice University and University of Houston, April 2003. Harvard School of Public Health, April 2003. Brown University, March 2003. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, February 2003. University of Texas at Austin, January 2003. Boston University, January 2003. Amherst College, December 2001.  Harvard Economics Department Labor Seminar, October 2001.

Lead and Infant Health. Baylor College of Medicine, May 2003.

Lead and Behavior.  Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management Annual Conference, November 2010. University of Delaware, March 2009. Clark University, November 2008. University of Massachusetts, September 2007.  RAND Corporation, April 2007.

Lead and Academic Performance.  Bureau of Environmental Health, Massachusetts Department of Public Health, May 2011.  Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, February 2011.  New England Public Policy Center, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, September 2010.

Lead, Environmental Policy, and Public Policy.  American Academy for the Advancement of Science Annual Meeting, February 2013.  Swarthmore College, March 2009.  Amherst College Faculty Colloquium Series, November 2008. Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning, Rochester, New York, February 2008.  University of Rochester Environmental Health Sciences Center, February 2008. Harvard Law School, April 2006.

Gender and Physicians.  Columbia Business School, Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Center on Leadership and Ethics, September 2008.  Jersey Shore Medical Center, June 2008.  American Economic Association Annual Meeting, January 2007.  Harvard University, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, May 2006.  Eastern Economic Association Annual Meeting, February 2006.

Malpractice and Physicians.  Amherst College Health Economics Symposium, April 2008.

College Financial Aid and Savings.  National Tax Association Annual Conference, November 2006. National Bureau of Economic Research Summer Institute, July 2006.  Williams College, November 2005.


College Service

Economics Department Service

Chair of Department of Economics, 2012-present.

Departmental Economics Library Representative, 2008-2009.

Department of Economics Search Committee, 2007-2008.

College Committees

Student Fellowships Committee, 2011-present.

Committee on Priorities and Resources, 2009-2010.

Environmental Studies Program Faculty, 2007-present.

Faculty Lecture Committee, Chair 2008-2009, Member 2007-2008.

Environmental Science / Environmental Studies Presidential Initiative Fund for Interdisciplinary Projects, 2004-2006.

Environmental Science Committee, 2004-2005.

Search Committee for Director of Information Technology, 2004-2005. 

College Conferences and Presentations

Amherst College Health Economics Symposium.  Planned, organized, and chaired a day-long conference in April 2008 that brought researchers, policymakers, and alumni to campus to talk about health economics and policy issues with students in Economics 40 (Health Economics and Policy), students in Economics 64 (Evaluating Social Policy), and the broader community.

Economics Department Thesis Process.  Worked to clarify and refine the structure of the honors thesis process in economics.  Endeavored to better inform economics majors about the process by sharing information in panel presentations and online, as well as encouraging majors to attend thesis-related events in their sophomore and junior years.  Coordinated student thesis presentations in December, January, and April of each year. 

Teaching and Advising Lunch on “Teaching Student Research: A Faculty-Librarian Collaboration” with Susan Edwards, library liaison to the social sciences, March 2008.

Interterm Course Lectures on “The Uninsured in Massachusetts,” organized by Academic Technology Services in collaboration with the Holyoke Health Center, January 2007 and January 2008.

1821 Alumni Society Presentation on “Faculty-Student Collaboration.”   Presentation to 1821 Alumni Society on faculty-student collaboration on college committees, October 2009.

Amherst Connects Lecture on“Economic Perspectives on Healthcare Reform.”  Virtual lecture-discussion, together with Prof. Walter Nicholson, on healthcare reform for alumni, parents, students, faculty, and the broad college community, May 2010.

Economics Student Handbook.   Created a handbook for students majoring in economics or considering a major in economics, August 2012.

Family Weekend Health Economics Symposium.  Organized and hosted three health economists for two days of talks on health economics and a panel discussion on health care reform, October 2012.

Student Organizations and Mentoring

Roosevelt Fireside Chat on “Demystifying Healthcare Reform,” October 2009.

Writing Center Orientation Panel Discussion on “Writing at Amherst,” September 2009.

Faculty Advisor to student Roosevelt Institution Chapter.

Women’s Career Networking Lunch, May 2008.

Academic Peer Training Program Panel Discussion on “Supporting First-Year Students,” August 2007.

MassPIRG's Campus Climate Initiative & Re-Think Panel on “Who is Responsible for the Environment?” March 2006.

Congress to Campus visit by two former members of Congress, discussion of “Health Care Policy for the Uninsured,” March 2006.

Student fellowships mock interviews and informal application advising.

Early advising and Orientation program.

Advising to students considering policy-related opportunities in medicine, the private sector, and government.

Directed Mellon and Amherst Academic Interns in economic research: Douglas Norton ’05, Loren Crary ’07, Lesley Pruzansky ’07, Channing Jones ’09, Stephen Trask ’09, Matthew Stolper ’10, Madeleine Weingarten ’11, Nicholas Hodges ’11, Christopher Morrison ’12, Diorgenes Bellini ’14.


Courses Taught

Economics 111: An Introduction to Economics (Fall 2002, Spring 2003, 2005, 2006)

Economics 231: Economics of the Public Sector (Spring 2004, Fall 2005)

Economics 214: Health Economics and Policy (Spring 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013)

Economics 300: Microeconomics (Fall 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012)

Economics 416: Evaluating Social Policy (Spring 2003, Fall 2004, Spring 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013)

Economics 498: Senior Departmental Honors Seminar (Fall 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012)

Economics 499: Senior Thesis (Spring 2003, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011)

Economics 490: Special Topics, Topics in Labor Economics: Immigration and Conflict, Ryan Park ‘05 (Spring 2005)


Theses Directed

Nathan Shike ’03, “A Micro-Economic Model of Fertility Behavior and Social Influence with an Empirical Analysis of Israeli Fertility Differentials”

Douglas Norton ’05, “Murder's Margin: Estimating the Impact of Health Care on the Lethality of Attacks”

Vikram Rangan ’06, “America's Uninsured Children: A Failure of State Policy?”

Jennifer Ho ’08, “The Economics of Luckiness: How Superstition Impacts Real Estate Prices in the Singapore Market”

Laura Vincent ’09, “Immigration and Welfare Generosity in Denmark”

Alex Meyers ’10 , “Stability of Risk Preference Estimates over Payoff Horizons”

Josephine Fisher ’12, “How do the Rich Die?”


November 2012



Department of Economics
304A Converse Hall — Amherst College — Amherst, MA
(413) 542.8517— jwreyes at