Does the Sharing Economy Increase Inequality? An Empirical Strategy

Wednesday, September 18, 2019 - 12:30 to 13:30

Indigenous Classroom (123) 

Speaker: Dr. Ronit Levine-Schnur, Assistant Professor, IDC Herzliya

Our research project is a rigorous quasi-experimental study of the effects of Airbnb activity on housing prices in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, during the years 2015-2018. The research is based on rich datasets on Airbnb listings, scraped from the Airbnb website throughout that period. It is also informed by detailed data on property transactions from the Israel Tax Authority and raw data from the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics Survey of Rents, and big-data on users’ interest in housing and rental ads. Combined with additional statistical and geographical information on the real estate market and other macroeconomic variables, this wealth of information will allow systematic examination of the distributional effect of Airbnb activity, and its contribution to inequality in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, providing proper background for policy purposes. This is a matter of timely relevance given current efforts to impose stricter regulation on landlord-tenant contracts and tax properties held for investment. 

Dr. Ronit Levine-Schnur is a senior lecturer at the Radzyner Law School, and a research associate at the Gazit-Globe Institute for Real Estate at IDC Herzliya. Her research focuses on property, land use regulation, urban development and land conflicts. She is an expert on land rights in the occupied West Bank. She was previously a Halbert Post-doctoral fellow at the University of Toronto, Canada, and a Visiting Fellow at the London School of Economics and Political Science. In 2018 she served as a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Xi’an Jiaotong University, China.

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