Journal Articles:

2023 - "The Myth of Wartime Prosperity: Evidence from the Canadian Experience" (with Vincent Geloso).  Social Science Quarterly. 104(4): 377–394.

2022 - "Preferential Attachment and Carl Menger’s Theory of the Endogenous Emergence of a Medium of Exchange". Cosmos and Taxis: Studies in Emergent Order and Organization. 10(5+6): 47–60.

Working Papers:

Is Deflation Cause For Panic? Evidence from the National Banking Era.

Rethinking Deflation and its Effects: Lessons from Canada Under the Classical Gold Standard (with Bryan Cutsinger)

Reaffirming the Wheat Boom: New Evidence for Structural Breaks in Canadian Economic Growth (with Jamie Bologna Pavlik and Vincent Geloso)

Works in Progress:

The Potlatch as Memory

Abstract: The Potlatch—a complex ceremony central to many Indigenous communities along the Pacific Northwest—is a unique institution that supports gift-giving as the primary way to allocate goods within these communities. During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, government and church officials increasingly sought to prohibit the Potlatch, criticizing it as wasteful and irrational. To present a counter-narrative, I draw from the monetary search literature to construct a decentralized exchange model that includes endogenous recordkeeping and specialization. I posit that the Potlatch’s ceremonial elements and dramatic retellings of the past—through song, dance, and storytelling—represent investments in social memory that deter free-riding and reinforce gift-giving norms. These investments, in turn, increase the extent of the market and make specialization more attractive, suggesting that the Potlatch could enhance wealth and welfare, contrary to non-Indigenous perceptions. My theoretical analysis integrates qualitative evidence and analytic narrative to support this conclusion.

An Exploration of Indigenous Access to Banking Services Historically in Canada: A Spatial Analysis           

Abstract: This paper builds a novel dataset of the location of charted bank branches in Canada between 1840 and 1935 – between the founding of the Province of Canada via the merger of Upper and Lower Canada (now Ontario and Quebec) and the establishment of the Bank of Canada (which ended private supply of large denomination notes). We then use this dataset to explore Indigenous communities’ access to financial services along two dimensions. First, as the branch network expanded, we test if the location of new branches relative to Indigenous communities was correlated with the community’s size and affluence. Here, we are looking to determine if chartered banks saw Indigenous communities as potential sources of customers or if they were disregarded in the location decision (possibly due to ignorance or bias). Second, we test if an Indigenous community being historically closer to a bank branch is a predictor of use of financial services and of participation in related programs to promote financial inclusion today. The proposed mechanism here is that geographic proximity to banks increases familiarity and awareness of financial institutions and, through this, helps build trust and financial acumen—a predictor of overall access to finance—which can be passed through generations over time. 

Recent and upcoming talks/events: