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Dr. Abigail Wozniak Seeking Research Partnership

    June 25, 2018

    Abigail Wozniak is an Associate Professor in the Department of Economics at the University of Notre Dame, working primarily in the field of labor economics. Her research has examined migration between states and cities as well as employer compensation and screening policies. Professor Wozniak is currently a Faculty Research Fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) and a Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in Bonn, Germany.

    Dr. Wozniak is seeking a corporate partner to help extend her work on the impacts of employer drug testing on hiring. Specifically, Dr. Wozniak worked with the White House team on their Ban-the-Box initiative in 2015, which requires some employers to postpone questions about criminal background until later in the interview process. Unfortunately when the WH formulated this policy, there was limited evidence on whether BTB policies help applicants with criminal records, and on whether they harm other applicants.

    Dr. Wozniak is interested in talking with a firm that has implemented BTB about this issue because information from a large employer could be helpful in resolving some of the puzzles in the data on these policies. If a firm was willing to share personnel and possibly applicant information, Dr. Wozniak could help them understand the impact of their BTB decision. This kind of information sharing could shed light on the role of these policies in the labor market more generally. 

    In these kinds of research partnerships, data security is paramount. Firms also retain the right to remain anonymous. They can typically make the decision about anonymity after seeing preliminary results. Dr. Wozniak has extensive experience using confidential personnel data. For example, she currently holds an MOU with the US Military Academy to use Army personnel data to help them analyze the impact of their soldier relocation policies.

    Dr. Wozniak is seeking connections interested in an exploratory conversation about what might be possible, with no commitment in advance on either side. To that end, she is seeking a connection at a company with someone who might be interested in such a project and able to evaluate its potential benefit to the company.  Her CV is available here.

    If you are interested in speaking to Dr. Wozniak further about this opportunity, please contact her directly at

    NEPA SHRM is providing the above for informational purposes only.  We are not affiliated with this study nor endorsing or encouraging participation.