Jorge Luis García

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I am an applied microeconomist at the John E. Walker Department of Economics at Clemson University. My research focuses on the intersection of labor and development economics. I use reduced-form and structural methods traditionally associated with labor economics to try to understand, design, and evaluate social policies that contribute to developing the economic conditions of countries and the well-being of their individuals. The themes of my recent papers are education, fertility, female labor supply, and religion. I teach economics of education at the undergraduate level and advanced applied econometrics for Ph.D. students.

My other affiliations include: Visiting Research Fellow at Duke University’s Social Science Research Institute, Quintiles Fellow at the Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics of the University of Southern California, Fellow at the Hayek Center for the Business of Prosperity of Clemson University, and member of the Early Childhood Interventions Network of the Human Capital and Economic Opportunity (HCEO) working group. Earlier this year, I visited the Institute on Behavior and Inequality (briq) as a Senior Visiting Fellow.

Click here to download my CV, which includes my complete professional information, links to my published and working papers, and my teaching details.

LIST OF publications


  1. Quantifying the Life-cycle Benefits of an Influential Early Childhood Program (with James J. Heckman, Duncan Ermini Leaf, and María José Prados). Accepted at the Journal of Political Economy.

  2. Early Childhood Education and Crime (with James J. Heckman and Anna L. Ziff) 2019. Infant Mental Health Journal 40:1.

  3. Gender Differences in the Benefits of an Influential Early Childhood Program (with James J. Heckman and Anna L. Ziff) 2018. European Economic Review 109.

  4. The Price of Fringe Benefits when Formal and Informal Labor Markets Coexist (with David Argente) 2015. IZA Journal of Labor Economics 3:14.

  5. Why Do Formal Credit, Informal Credit, and both Types of Credits Coexist as Consumer Choices? (with Víctor Carreón and Sonia Di Giannatale) 2015. Economics Bulletin 35:1.

Book Chapters

  1. Early Childhood Education (with Sneha Elango, James J. Heckman, and Andrés Hojman) 2016. Economics of Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States, Volume II. The University of Chicago Press, edited by Robert Moffitt.

list of working PAPERS

  1. Early Childhood Education and Life-cycle Health (with James J. Heckman). Under review.

  2. Fertility and the Daughter-to-Son Ratio During China’s (More-than) One-Child Policy. Under review. Click here to see the Appendix.

  3. Guaranteed Employment in Rural India: Empowering Women or Reducing the Value of their Labor Force Participation? (with Smriti Bhargava). Under review. Click here to see the Appendix.



I am working to understand how religion shapes human capital, fertility, beliefs about race, and voting behavior in the United States. The first stage of this project was a data collection of the stock and openings of churches in the United States during the period 1993 to 2010. One of the outcomes of the data collection process is a map displaying the number of church openings (below). I will post updates on this project soon.

Church openings in the United States, 1993-2010

China’s One-Child Policy

This is a link to a paper condensing the material of a project that studies China's One-Child Policy. I provide a characterization of China’s One-Child Policy as a woman-level, age-specific pricing system. The system priced the permits allowing every woman and her partner to have more than one child. I construct a nationally representative sample of women containing fertility and abortion histories and match it to the policy’s pricing system. Using a difference-in-difference framework, I exploit within-woman variation to document that the number of daughters born per household was inelastic with respect to the price associated with the policy, while the number of sons was perfectly inelastic. The availability of ultrasound technology allowed sex-selective abortions and mediated the sex-specific response to the policy. Despite the inelastic response, the One-Child Policy still impacted aggregate fertility through large permit prices, as the figure below illustrates.

Contact me if you want to use the pricing system that I documented in your own project.

Total Fertility Rate in China, Realized and No-One-Child Policy Counterfactual


In a series of papers, my coauthors and I evaluate an influential early childhood education program known as ABC and CARE. In our main article, we propose a method to use non-experimental data and structural econometric methods to supplement and expand what can be learned from the treatment effects directly generated by a randomized controlled trial of the program. The figure below is one of the outcomes of the application of our methods. We forecast the life-cycle benefits of the program when only having data up to early adulthood. Our approach has testable implications and could be applied to the evaluation of any social program. Please see my CV for links to the other papers.

Net Present Value of the Costs and Benefits of an Influential Early Childhood Education Program (ABC and CARE)


Phone: + 1 864 650 6201
Address: 203 SIRRINE HALL, CLEMSON SC 29630
this is a link to my cv

Please visit my GitHub repository for replication codes of my projects and other useful codes (e.g., a tutorial on structural estimation in Python and julia.)