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Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues


Kenan Institute 2024 Grand Challenge: Business Resilience
Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues



UNC-Chapel Hill professor and Kenan Institute expert Iheoma U. Iruka took part in a roundtable discussion on the "childcare cliff" on PBS NC’s “State Lines” July 5. The episode is available online.

During the institute’s monthly briefing June 7, Research Director Camelia Kuhnen discussed the stronger-than-expected new employment report and predicted that the Federal Reserve would still begin lowering interest rates later in the year.

Camelia Kuhnen, Kenan Institute director of research and UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School finance professor, speaks to consumer sentiment during the institute's May 3 economic briefing.

During the institute’s monthly press briefing May 3, Research Director Camelia Kuhnen discussed slower growth in the labor market and explored what creates the gap we now see in consumer sentiment numbers.

During the institute’s monthly press briefing April 5, Research Fellow Greg Brown presented thoughts on what’s needed to extend a period of job growth and lower inflation.

During the institute's monthly press briefing March 8, Chief Economist Gerald Cohen discussed another solid jobs report, in which the U.S. economy added 275,000 jobs for February.

The increasing demand for electric cars is creating new opportunities for jobs and innovation in new locations, but there are differing views of the potential effect on overall auto sector jobs.

The institute has teamed up to work with Fifth Third Commercial Bank Chief Economist Jeff Korzenik on research into second-chance hiring. In his new opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal, Korzenik discusses Japan’s “miracle” workforce expansion and what the U.S. can learn from it.

A recent meta-analysis from UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School Professor Elad Sherf and co-authors examines the literature on "seeking behavior" at work – such as asking for information, feedback or help. Why does it matter and how can it be harnessed to the benefit of both employers and employees?

Research indicates that groups are most effective at achieving gender equity goals when men and women advocate together.

A last-minute deal averted a rail strike last week, but it highlights how staffing shortages in the industry as well as in education, hospitality and healthcare are pushing workers to push back, writes The Washington Post. Jobs with long hours and rigid schedules that lack competitive pay and benefits are proving the most difficult to fill, Director of Research Paige Ouimet said. “Running your workers like this – asking them to do 20, 30 percent more because you’re short staffed – it’s very much a short-term strategy,” Ouimet said. “You’re going to keep losing people.”

COVID-19 first caused chaos in our labor markets with the lockdowns of 2020, which sent unemployment rates soaring to all-time highs. It has continued to disrupt labor markets into 2022 as worries about health risks have kept workers at home, exasperating labor shortages. Looking forward, as we learn to live with COVID, we will also have to adapt to the effects of long COVID, when symptoms such as fatigue, difficulty breathing and “brain fog” appear after COVID. In this commentary, I attempt to assess the risk to our labor markets from long COVID.