Conferences and Workshops

Rimini Conference in Economics and Finance (RCEF2018)

14-15 June 2018, Rimini Palacongressi, Italy

Keynote Speakers

Michael B. Devereux

University of British Columbia, NBER and RCEA

Lawrence Schembri

Bank of Canada and RCEA

The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis (RCEA) invites papers to be considered for the RCEF2018: the Rimini Conference in Economics and Finance. RCEF is our main biennial conference, assembling a group of leading economists to present and discuss their work at the cutting edge of economic research.

The Centre welcomes submissions for the contributed sessions in all areas of economics and finance, including monetary and fiscal policies, experimental economics, business cycles analysis, international trade and finance, public economics, public finance, general equilibrium, game theory, environmental economics, industrial organization, labour economics, health economics, economic geography, regional development and economics of tourism.  RCEF2018 will run will run in parallel to the 5th RCEA Time Series Econometrics Workshop and the 12th RCEA Bayesian Workshop, all held at Rimini Palacongressi. Papers in all areas of econometrics should he submitted to one of these workshops. Participants to RCEF2018 will have access to all sessions of the Bayesian and Time Series Workshops, and vice versa.

12th Annual RCEA Bayesian Workshop

14-15 June 2018, Rimini Palacongressi, Italy

Keynote Speaker

Mike West

Duke University

The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis invites papers to be considered for its 12th RCEA Bayesian Workshop. 

The Centre welcomes submissions for the contributed sessions. While the workshop is intended for theoretical work or applied work with methodological contribution in Bayesian Econometrics, any Bayesian paper with an econometric focus will be considered. Quality papers in all areas in relation to the overarching theme of the workshop are welcome.

5th RCEA Time Series Econometrics Workshop

14-15 June 2018, Rimini Palacongressi, Italy

Keynote Speaker

André Lucas

Free University

The 5th RCEA Time Series Econometrics Workshop will take place at Rimini Palacongressi (, Via della Fiera 23, Rimini, Italy, 14-15 June 2018, with keynote speaker André Lucas (Free University of Amsterdam). In addition, we will run a full set of contributed sessions. Papers in all areas of Time Series econometrics are welcome.

4th International Conference in Applied Theory, Macro and Empirical Finance

April 02-03, 2018, University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece

Keynote Speakers

Harris Dellas

University of Bern

Evi Pappa

European University Institute

Thanasis Stengos

University of Guelph

Konstantinos Theodoridis

University of Cardiff

Department of Economics of the University of Macedonia organizes the 4th International Conference in Applied Theory, Macro and Empirical Finance (AMEF), which will be held at the Department of Economics, University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece. The aim is to bring together researchers, young scholars, post-doctoral researchers and PhD students that are working on the areas of Economics and Finance. Selected papers will be included in special issues of (1) Journal of Economic Asymmetries, (2) Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance and (3) Review of Economic Analysis.

Past Conferences and Workshops

11th Annual Bayesian Econometrics Workshop

July 3-4, 2017, University of Melbourne, Australia

Keynote Speakers

Sylvia Frühwirth-Schnatter

Institute for Statistics and Mathematics,
Vienna University of Economics and Business

Sylvia Kaufmann

Study Center Gerzensee,
Foundation of the Swiss National Bank

This is the first time the RCEA Bayesian workshop was held in Australia. It is the result of a partnership with the Bayesian Analysis and Modeling Research Group at the University of Melbourne. Papers in all areas of Bayesian econometrics were presented.

9th RCEA Macro-Money-Finance Workshop
Monetary and Fiscal Policy in the Next Recession

June 23-24, 2017, Balsillie School of International Affairs, Waterloo, On. Canada

Keynote Speakers

Laurence M. Ball

Johns Hopkins University and NBER

Angelo Melino

University of Toronto, RCEA and C.D.Howe

The current macroeconomic situation will make it more difficult than ever for policymakers to stimulate economies in the next recession.  Policy interest rates cannot be reduced much  since they are at record lows; public debt is, in most countries, at record high, and the new US administration is promising to roll back some of macroprudential reforms introduced in the wake of the Great Recession. The current situation makes dealing with the next recession a formidable challenge. The goal of the workshop is to discuss what can be done to prepare for the next cyclical downturn, and what to do when the next recession starts, as it inevitably will.

Two Dynamic Paths on a Shared Road: Canadian-Italian Cooperation at 150 and 156

June 17, 2017, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Keynote Speakers

Luigi Bruti-Liberati

Università degli Studi di Milano

Kenneth Bartlett

University of Toronto

The conference is organized on the occasion of Canada’s sesquicentennial,  with the support of the Consulate General of Italy in Toronto and Istituto Italiano di Cultura in Toronto.

Unlike other RCEA meetings, this is an interdisciplinary conference, which will include participants from social sciences and humanities. It has two goals. The first is to celebrate 150 years of Canada and the contribution of Italian-Canadians to Canada’s economic, political, social and cultural development. The second goal is to bring together academics and policymakers from both countries to spur cooperation between Canada and Italy. Canada’s sesquicentennial year, coming only a few years after Italy’s 150th anniversary as a unified state, provides a timely opportunity to strengthen these historic bonds.

8th RCEA Macro-Money-Finance Workshop

May 18-19, 2017, Rimini, Palacongressi, Italy

Keynote Speakers

Karim Abadir

Imperial College London

Guido Ascari

University of Oxford

The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis (RCEA) invites papers to be considered for its 2017 RCEA Macro-Money-Finance Workshop. While the workshop is intended for theoretical work or applied work in Macroeconomics, Monetary Economics, Finance and Public Finance, papers in any area of Economics and Finance in relation to the overarching theme of the workshop are welcome.

3rd International Conference in Applied Theory, Macro and Empirical Finance (AMEF)

April 21-22 , 2017, University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki , Greece

Keynote Speakers

Gikas Hardouvelis

University of Pireus

Elias Papaioannou

London Business School

Konstantinos Theodoridis

Bank of England

Thanasis Stengos

University of Guelph

The Department of Economics of the University of Macedonia organizes the 3rd International Conference in Applied Theory, Macro and Empirical Finance (AMEF). The aim is to bring together researchers, young scholars, post-doctoral researchers and PhD students that are working on the areas of Economics and Finance. Selected papers will be included in special issues of (1) Applied Economics Quarterly, (2) Review of Economic Analysis and (3) South Eastern Europe Journal of Economics. 

3rd Workshop on Spatial Dimensions of the Labour Market
Spatial Dimensions of Inequality

March 30-31, 2017, Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW), Mannheim, Germany

Keynote Speakers

Gilles Duranton

The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and RCEA

Andrés Rodríguez-Pose

London School of Economics, President of the RSAI

Jens Südekum

Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf

The workshop on “Spatial Dimensions of the Labour Market” focuses on topics concerning regional labour markets. This year, a special focus is placed on inequality across space. The workshop is  jointly organised by the Institute for Employment Research (IAB), the Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis (RCEA) and the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW).  

For earlier events please click the Colloquium tab at the top of the page

Conferences and Workshops

1st RCEA Warsaw Money-Macro-Finance Conference

25-26 May 2018, Warsaw, Poland

Keynote Speaker

Stephen G. Cecchetti

Brandeis International Business School

The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis – Poland (RCEA-Poland) and the Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw invite papers to be considered for the 1st RCEA Warsaw Money, Macro Finance Conference (WMMF2018).

We welcome submissions in all areas of macroeconomics, monetary economics and finance, including monetary and fiscal policies, business cycles analysis, general equilibrium, growth theory, financial analysis, financial and macroprudential regulation, asset prices, corporate finance and asset management. Quality papers in all areas in relation to the overarching theme of the conference are welcome. The main objective of this meeting is to stimulate cooperation of researchers from all over the world. Young economists are encouraged to apply.

WWMF2018 is the first meeting organized by newly established RCEA-Poland in cooperation with the Faculty of Economic Sciences of the University of Warsaw (WNE). RCEA is an is a private, non-profit international organization dedicated to independent research in applied and theoretical economics and related fields. Originally established in Rimini, Italy in 2007, it is headquartered in Canada and has a branch in Italy and now in Poland. WNE is the top-ranked Polish institution on RePEc and one of only two economic faculties ranked A+ by the Polish education ministry.


We are pleased to announce the establishment of RCEA-Poland.

The director of RCEA-Poland is Joanna Siwińska-Gorzelak. RCEA-Poland will be located at the Faculty of Economic Sciences (WNE), Warsaw University.

WNE is the top-ranked Polish institution on RePEc and one of only two economic faculties ranked A+ by the Polish education ministry.

RCEA is an is a private, non-profit international organization dedicated to independent research in applied and theoretical economics and related fields. Originally established in Rimini, Italy in 2007, it is  headquartered in Canada and has a branch in Italy and now in Poland. Poland has some excellent economists, including many young researchers, and we hope to contribute to the development of academic research there.

RCEAs is pleased to announce the appointment of Laurence Ball as Honorary Senior Fellow. Larry is professor and chair of the Department of Economics at Johns Hopkins University, Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research and Visiting Scholar at the International Monetary Fund. His research focuses on unemployment, inflation, and fiscal and monetary policy. His papers appeared in American Economic Review, Brookings Papers, Carnegie-Rochester Series, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Journal of Political Economy, Quarterly Journal of Economics and Review of Economic Studies. Larry is the author of Money, Banking, and Financial Markets (Worth Publishers, second edition 2012). He is writing a book on the Federal Reserve and the collapse of Lehman Brothers.

Honorary Senior Fellow Laurence Ball

RCEA Fellow News

Laurence Ball, RCEA Honorary Senior Fellow, has written a book on the Lehman Brothers’ collapse. The book The Fed and Lehman Brothers: Setting the Record Straight on a Financial Disaster will be published in April by Cambridge University Press

Steve Ambler, RCEA Senior Fellow, has been re-appointed for multiple roles at the C.D. Howe Institute: as a Fellow-in-Residence, the David Dodge Chair in Monetary Policy, and a member of the National Council at the Institute.
Steve serves as the Director, RCEA-Italy and is a member of the RCEA Scientific Board.

Recent working papers

In WP 18-14: “On the Determinants of Bitcoin Returns: a LASSO Approach”, Theodore Panagiotidis, Thanasis Stengos and Orestis Vravosinos examine the significance of potential drivers of bitcoin returns for the period 2010 to 2017. Within a LASSO framework, they examine the effects of stock market returns, exchange rates, gold and oil returns, FED’s and ECB’s rates and internet trends.Search intensity and gold returns emerge as the most important variables for bitcoin returns.

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In WP 18-13: “Volatility Persistence and Asymmetry Under the Microscope: The Role of Information Demand for Gold and Oil”, Georgios Bampinas, Theodore Panagiotidis and Christina Rouska explore the relationship between Google search activity and the conditional volatility of oil and gold spot market returns. They construct a weekly Searching Volume Index (SVI) for each market as proxy of households and investors information demand. They find that higher information demand increases conditional return volatility.

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In WP 18-12: “Bayesian Inference and Prediction of a Multiple-Change-Point Panel Model with Nonparametric Priors”, Mark Fisher and Mark J. Jensen model the hierarchical prior nonparametrically by letting the hyperparameter’s prior be unknown and modeling it with a Dirichlet processes prior. They apply their model to a longitudinal data set of actively managed, US equity, mutual fund returns to measure fund performance and investigate what the chances are of a skilled fund being skilled in the future.

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In WP 18-11: “A Class of Model Averaging Estimators”, Shangwei Zhao, Aman Ullah and Xinyu Zhang introduce a class of model averaging estimators. Model averaging aims to a trade-off between efficiency and biases. They establish its dominance condition over the ordinary least squares estimator. All theoretical findings are verified by simulations.

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In WP 18-10: “Has Monetary Policy Changed? How the Crisis Shifted the Ground Under Central Banks”, Pierre Siklos examines the results of a survey begun in 2013, in cooperation with the BIS, to assess how and why central bank communication strategies have changed in light of the financial crisis of 2008-10. Inflation targeting central banks are more vocal in publicly explaining the role and function of macroprudential tools. Communicating in normal versus crisis times are not seen as being very different.

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In WP 18-09: “Some Financial Implications of Global Warming: An Empirical Assessment”, Claudio Morana and Giacomo Sbrana assess global warming evidence, its implications for the natural environment and the drivers of catastrophe bonds risk premia. They report that rising natural disaster risk is not reflected in prices of catastrophe bonds and conclude that there is significant undervaluation of natural disasters risk.

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In WP 18-08: “Economic Growth and the Public Sector: A Comparison of Canada and Italy, 1870-2013”, Livio Di Matteo and Thomas Barbiero investigate public sector spending of central governments and economic performance in Canada and Italy. They find the size of central government spending directly affects the performance of their economies in an inverse U-shaped relationship known as a Scully/BARS Curve. The results have implications for spending by both the central and other levels of government.

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In WP 18-07: “On the Evolution of Individual Preferences and Family Rules”, Alessandro Cigno and Annalisa Luporini study the result of mixed marriages on the evolution of inherited traits. Under certain conditions, in the long run everyone has the same trait. The authors discuss the consequences for immigration and welfare policy if the trait is a person’s taste for receiving filial attention in old age.

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In WP 18-06: “Consistent non-Gaussian Pseudo Maximum Likelihood Estimators”, Gabriele Fiorentini and Enrique Sentana characterize the mean and variance parameters that distributionally misspecied maximum likelihood estimators can consistently estimate in multivariate conditionally heteroskedastic dynamic regression models. They analyze the statistical properties of the proposed consistent estimators, as well as their efficiency relative to Gaussian pseudo maximum likelihood procedures.

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In WP 18-05: “The Fama 3 and Fama 5 Factor Models Under a Machine Learning Framework”, Periklis Gogas, Theofilos Papadimitriou and Dimitrios Karagkiozis examine Fama – French 3 & 5 factors model, the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) and the Arbitrage Pricing Theory (APT) model. These models are used by investors and market professionals as an important part of the investment decision process and for the evaluation of the applied investment strategies.

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In WP 18-04: “Aid to agriculture, Trade and Take-off”, Alessandra Pelloni, Thanasis Stengos and Ilaria Tedesco study the effect of foreign aid to agriculture on the industrialization process of developing countries. The theoretical analysis suggests a dichotomy between closed and open economies as regards the impact of aid given for productive purposes to the primary sector. Empirical results confirm this, as they find the effect is positive for landlocked countries only.

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In WP 18-03: “Oil Price Shocks and Economic Growth: The Volatility Link”, John M. Maheu, Yong Song and Qiao Yang report a robust link between oil shocks and the volatility of economic growth. A new measure of oil shocks is developed and shown to be superior to existing measures.  It indicates that the conditional variance of growth increases in response to an indicator of local maximum oil price exceedance.

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In WP 18-02: “Bayesian Parametric and Semiparametric Factor Models for Large Realized Covariance Matrices”, Xin Jin, John M. Maheu and Qiao Yang introduce a new factor structure suitable for modeling large realized covariance matrices with full likelihood based estimation. Due to the computational advantages of their approach, the factor can be modelled nonparametrically as a Dirichlet process mixture or as an infinite hidden Markov mixture which leads to an infinite mixture of inverse-Wishart distribution.

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In WP 18-01: “The Shifting Scully Curve: International Evidence from 1870 to 2013”, Livio Di Matteo and Fraser Summerfield estimate the Scully curve predictions for growth-maximizing public sector sizea using panel data covering 17 industrialized nations from 1870-2013. The economic growth maximizing size shifted over time from 9% pre-WWI to 25% Post WWII. IV estimates suggest that the Scully curve may be subject to some reverse causality.

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In WP 17-31: “The Impact of Uncertainty Shocks on the Volatility of Commodity Prices”, Dimitrios Bakas and Athanasios Triantafyllou examine the impact of uncertainty shocks on the volatility of commodity prices. Their results indicate that a positive shock in both macroeconomic and financial uncertainty leads to a persistent increase in the volatility of the broad commodity market index and of individual commodity prices.  

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In WP 17:30: “Structural Transformation and the Rise of Information Technology”, Giovanni Gallipoli and Christos A. Makridis ask whether the emergence of information technology changed the structure of employment and earnings in the US. The authors propose a new index of occupation-level IT intensity and document several long-term changes in the occupational landscape over the past decades,  using Census micro-data between 1970 and 2015: (i) the share of workers in IT-intensive jobs has expanded significantly, with little or no pause; (ii) IT jobs enjoy a large and growing earnings premium, even after controlling for general task requirements (e.g., cognitive, non-routine); and (iii) the rise of the IT employment share is closely associated with declines in the manufacturing employment share.

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In WP 17-29: “Corruption and Economic Development”, Sule Akkoyunlu and Debora Ramella investigate the impact of openness to trade and corruption on economic development for a cross-section of 143 countries. They find that corruption negatively affects income per capita, productivity, and innovation, while it does not significantly impact income inequality (Gini). The control of corruption and the openness to trade affect output per worker through total factor productivity. These findings have important policy implications. For example, on the basis of the estimates, if Botswana improved its control of corruption to reach the level of Finland, its per capita income would rise almost threefold.

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In WP 17-28: “Towards an understanding of credit cycles: do all credit booms cause crises?” R. Barrell, D. Karim and Corrado Macchiarelli analyze the practical side of the hypothesis that excessive credit growth leads to banking crises. They compare the performance of the HP filter to extract the cyclical indicator of excess credit with alternative measures of the credit gap. They find that, in some countries, and AR (2) smoother does a better job than the HP filter. They conclude that credit growth is sometimes a good indicator of potential problems but note that this is restricted to cases where excessive lending fuels a cycle of rising housing prices and hence collateral which in turn propagates further credit growth. Their results question the effectiveness of the macroprudential policy which links capital requirements to the measured level of excess credit in the economy.

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In WP 17-27: “Nobel Beauty”, Jan Fidrmuc, Boontarika Paphawasit and Çigdem Börke Tunali consider the effect of physical attractiveness, assessed using publicly available pictures of top scientists, on their probability of winning the Nobel Prize. There is now an extensive body of literature that finds that physically attractive people receive non-negligible benefits in the labor market, marriage market and social life. In contrast, they find that attractiveness is negatively correlated with the probability of being awarded the Nobel.

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In WP 17-26: “Technology-specific Production Functions”, Michele Battisti, Filippo Belloc and Massimo Del Gatto estimate technology-specific production functions avoiding any ex-ante assumption on the degree of technological sharing across firms. Their approach enables them to isolate the contribution to labour productivity stemming from technology (i.e. between-technology TFP) from the contribution associated to idiosyncratic productivity shocks not related to technology (i.e. within-technology TFP).

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In WP 17-25: “Understanding Artwork Pricing: Some Theoretical Models”, Francesco Angelini and Massimiliano Castellani analyse the pricing of artworks created by an artist and sold for the first time in the art market and the role information on private art market price formation. Assuming price-maximizing agents with both full and asymmetric information on market powers and reserve prices, a bargaining game theory approach is used to explore all possible channels (paths) that a new artwork can take to reach a collector or an auction house.

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In WP 17-24: “How to Make Monetary Policy More Effective”, Steve Ambler suggests that quantitative easing could be made much more effective by making expansions of the monetary base permanent. In turn, a commitment to permanent monetary expansion would be more credible if central banks adopted targets for nominal aggregates such as the price level or nominal GDP. A level target would also allay fears of runaway inflation.

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In WP 17-23: “Male Education and Domestic Violence in Turkey: Evidence from a Natural Experiment”, Mustafa Özer and Jan Fidrmuc study the effect of schooling on violence against women. Husband education lowers the incidence of physical, emotional and economic violence, but not of sexual violence. It also reduces the likelihood of forced marriage and socially unacceptable behaviour.

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In WP 17-22, “Maternal education and childhood immunization in Turkey”Mustafa Özer, Jan Fidrmuc and Mehmet Ali Eryurt find that the Compulsory Education Law (CEL), which increased compulsory schooling in Turkey from 5 to 8 years increased the probability of completing the full course of DPT and Hepatitis B vaccinations for children. 

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