DR. RUBEN JUAREZ
Ruben Juarez is a Professor of Economics at the Department of Economics in the University of Hawaii. He is also a Research Fellow at the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization (UHERO) and the Director at the Data Coordination and Evaluation Unit at the Pacific Alliance Against COVID-19.
His main research interests include microeconomics, game theory, and network economics, especially in the design of mechanisms and institutions for the efficient, incentive compatible and fair allocation of costs and resources in the presence of network effects.
SAFER SCHOOL REOPENING: COVID-19 STRATEGIES FOR EDUCATORS
Hanahau'oli Professional Development Center
Honolulu, HI, Aug 25-Aug 26, 2021
COVID-19 MANDATES: RECOMMENDATIONS FOR HAWAII BUSINESSES
Hawaii Business Roundtable
Honolulu, HI, September 10, 2021
EMPOWERING SCHOOLS AS ASSETS TO MITIGATE THE SPREAD OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
NIH RADx-UP Scientific Inaugural Meeting
Online, September 21, 2021
RECENT PAPERS AND PROJECTS
COVID-19 MANDATES: RECOMMENDATIONS FOR HAWAIʻI BUSINESSES
Faced with the largest increase in cases since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Hawaii needs effective solutions that would reduce the number of cases disproportionately ravaging communities in the state. In August 2021, UHERO and PAAC conducted a representative survey of businesses and community organizations in the state to (1) understand their willingness to adopt restrictions at their workplaces for employees and customers and (2) understand barriers to effectively execute these restrictions if implemented.
HAWAII INTEGRATED ANALYTICS
HI'A is a multidisciplinary team of researchers that uses the power of data to show the impact of ‘āina-based practices on community health.
Most of the community groups HI’A works with did not set out to be healthcare organizations. They are farms, food banks, or schools. Oftentimes, sustainability and malama ‘āina are baked into their mission and DNA. What they have in common is a deep commitment to people, and an understanding that true well-being is a community endeavor.
PACIFIC ALLIANCE AGAINST COVID-19
The Pacific Alliance Against COVID-19 (PAAC) expands COVID-19 testing in the community and empowers educators, students and the community at large with education tools and connections with public health services, including those provided by the AHARO Community Health Centers. Learn more about our partnership.
THE EFFICACY OF HAWAII COVID-19 BUSINESS MANDATES
Despite the national attention around COVID-19 vaccination mandates for businesses, the actual impacts on vaccination uptake have yet to be reported. In September, two counties in Hawaii implemented mandates for employees in select businesses to be either vaccinated or enroll in a regular COVID-19 testing program. We estimate the increased vaccination rate of nearly 2000 businesses in Hawaii. 84.4% vaccination rate was reported among employees before mandates, and an additional 8% of employees were estimated to have been vaccinated as a result of the mandates. We also observed that 5.9% of employees elected regular COVID-19 testing, while 1.7% were either dismissed or resigned. This study shows the first quantification of the effects of the mandates on vaccine uptake. The increased vaccination rate observed is an encouraging indication of the efficacy of these mandates on businesses in Hawaii, with far-reaching implications for other parts of the country implementing similar strategies to mitigate COVID-19.
MOBILE MONEY NETWORKS WITH TAX INCENTIVES
We study the recent development of a Mobile Money in Ecuador using a unique data set from all MM transactions in the country over the life of the project. We show how agents behave over time and how they react when given tax-incentives for the use of non-cash transactions. These findings offer important lessons that would be valuable to other governments and policymakers considering MM. (Humanities and Social Sciences Communications, Forthcoming)