Welcome to my webpage, and thank you for stopping by! I'm David Hummel, currently deepening my knowledge in the Economics Ph.D. program at Northeastern
University. Over the past five years, alongside my academic journey, I've embraced various roles in external firms. My lifelong fascination with mathematics
and logical reasoning has evolved into a profound appreciation for computer science. I'm driven by a desire to harness my skills and make a tangible impact.
As you explore further, you'll discover highlights of my professional and academic milestones, my foundational skillset, and the passions I'm currently pursuing.
The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
BSc in Industrial Systems and Engineering Aug. 2012 – May 2016
My passion for mathematics and problem solving led me to pursue a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Systems and Engineering at The Ohio State Univeristy. This provided me with a robust understanding of engineering principles, systems optimization, and the interdisciplinary nature of engineering and its applications in various industries. While a senior at Ohio State, I took an Operations Research course which sparked my interest in the optimization practices.
Northeastern University, Boston, MA
PhD in Economics Aug. 2018 – Present
With renewed appreciation of the generalizable tools Operations Research and Economics offer, I decided to pursue a Ph.D. in Economics at Northeastern University. At Northeastern University, I embarked on a comprehensive study of Economics, diving deep into both theoretical and applied aspects of the field. My journey here has equipped me with advanced analytical skills and a profound understanding of economic principles and their real-world applications.
In my main project at Lockheed Martin, I combined Business Intelligence tools, VBA, and batch scripting to generate reports by product area.
I automated these reports to be sent daily to the inboxes of area managers and displayed them on television screens throughout the facility.
This automation enabled managers to spend less time on report generation while giving them a clear snapshot of the manufacturers' performance.
In my second project, I collaborated with the senior in-house Oracle developer. Together, we addressed a challenge in the building process where numerous small parts had to be retrieved from a warehouse and assembled into a kit. We designed an application that expedited the collection of these parts and facilitated the tracking of each piece of equipment throughout the assembly process. This system also accounted for out-of-stock parts, allowing the assembly to commence without them.
I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Lockheed Martin but felt a pull toward acquiring a more versatile toolkit. Drawing from my background in Operations Research and my growing passion for computer science, I chose to delve into Economics, which I saw as the ideal fusion of these fields.
Federal Reserve Bank of Boston
In the Spring of my first year in the Ph.D. program, I joined the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston's Payments Strategies group. I continued working there until the Fall of my
second year. During my tenure, I took on various projects. One of my primary responsibilities was the 2019 Federal Reserve Mobile Financial Services Survey, which gathered
data from over 2,000 financial institutions about their mobile banking and payment services. When I joined, the team had just completed the survey design. I took the initiative
to automate the documentation of returned responses, clean the data, and conduct its analysis. Given the sensitive nature of the information, I exclusively used VBA for these tasks.
In my primary project, I delved into the realm of payment fraud. My responsibility was to create a comprehensive model detailing various types of fraud and their corresponding mitigation strategies. To achieve this, I collaborated with an undergraduate intern whom I managed. Together, we scoured numerous papers on fraud types and mitigation techniques. I distilled the information into its essential components, synthesizing a clear and concise model. My team then introduced this model to financial institutions, providing insights into potential threats and offering actionable strategies to safeguard against these vulnerabilities.
American Antitrust Institute
During the Spring of my third year through to the Spring of my fourth year in the Ph.D. program, I served as a Research Fellow at the American Antitrust Institute. This role provided me with invaluable insights into policy advocacy. I took the lead on several projects, including:
- Crafting a comment for the Attorney General about the proposed merger of Time Warner and Discovery. Collaborating with Public Knowledge, I critically reviewed efficiency gains claims from past mergers and dissected economic arguments presented in prior filings.
- Drafting a comment for the Secretary of Transportation concerning the proposed code-sharing arrangement between American Airlines and JetBlue. I delved into the code-sharing literature and tailored its insights specifically to the dynamics between these two airlines.
- Leading the project titled "Anticipating the Next Generation of Powerful Digital Players: Implications for Competition Policy," where the goal was to pinpoint the upcoming influential digital companies and understand the ramifications for competition policy. I spearheaded the identification of these companies, employed cluster analysis on product offerings to discern potential counterfactual companies, and assessed the broader implications for competition policy.
Teaching Intermediate Macroeconomics at Bentley University marked my first solo teaching experience.
I then taught a Master's level Econometrics course at Northeastern University.
You can explore the lectures for my Econometrics course here.
While in the Economics Ph.D. program at Northeastern University, I've had the privilege of teaching the week-long Math Boot Camp for
incoming second-year students. I've led this session every year since my second year in the program. In these sessions, I cover topics like
Linear Algebra—whose material you can view or download here—and Static Optimization, which you can also view or download here.
In addition to these teaching roles, I served as a Teaching Assistant for Econometrics at Harvard University. At Northeastern University, I've assisted in a range of courses, including Bubbles, Busts, and Bailouts (a deep dive into the causes and aftermath of the 2008 Housing Crisis), Intermediate Macroeconomics, Intermediate Microeconomics, Introductory Econometrics, the Capstone course, and Development Economics.
Work in Progress
Balancing my roles, I often work as a research assistant alongside my duties as a teaching assistant. This dual responsibility has introduced me to myriad projects, each contributing to my growing and diverse skillset. In one such project, I was the bridge between my manager, Professor Bilge Erten, and a trio of undergraduate students. Navigating this inter-generational dynamic, I emphasized transparent communication, set clear expectations, and nurtured a cooperative and efficient work environment. The following are the more notable projects I have worked on the Professor Erten.
- One ongoing research delves into the impact of the inauguration of Public Juvenile Mental Health facilities (CAPS) in Brazil on educational outcomes. Our team is harnessing healthcare data from Brazil's Ministry of Health and educational data from its Ministry of Education. This massive dataset encompasses over 3 million children. We match these children with control units using precise matching techniques and employ an event study framework to assess the influence of these facilities. While the specific data on education and treatment is confidential, a segment of this project required pinpointing the geolocations of the facilities. I achieved this using the Google Maps API, and you can view a demonstration of my approach here.
- Another paper under peer review investigates the repercussions of OxyContin's reformulation on Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) rates. Our analysis demanded a comprehensive record of reported IPV incidents. I crafted and executed scripts to gather, refine, and integrate controls into three decades of data from the FBI's Uniform Crime Report.
My dissertation comprises three distinct chapters, each reflecting a unique area of research:
- The inaugural chapter originated from a project during my RA tenure. It delves into the price dynamics observed when a nascent, disruptive firm expands to mirror the stature of an established incumbent. I crafted a dynamic model to simulate a firm's pricing strategy as it evolves. This model anticipates an initial phase where the firm disrupts the market with declining prices, followed by a surge in prices as the firm matures. Empirically, this trajectory was evident in the case study of Southwest Airlines.
- Building on my RA research on Intimate Partner Violence, the second chapter assesses the impact of substance use treatment facilities on such violence. While I utilized the same crime dataset, I also extracted data on treatment facilities from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website. I'll be sharing the code for this data extraction shortly.
- The final chapter, inspired by my tenure at the American Antitrust Institute, focuses on the US beef market. I'm investigating the tactics employed by beef processors, specifically how they leverage contractual procurement to depress cattle prices. My analysis seeks to determine if the trajectory of this price reduction aligns with competitive market behaviors.
- Fraser, T., Aldrich, D. P., Panagopoulos, C., Hummel, D., & Kim, D. (2022). The harmful effects of partisan polarization on health. PNAS Nexus, 1(1), pgac011.
- Panagopoulos, C., Fraser, T., Aldrich, D. P., Kim, D., & Hummel, D. (2022). Bridging the Divide: Does Social Capital Moderate the Impact of Polarization on Health?. Political Research Quarterly, 75(3), 875–891.
Programming for Research
All code samples mentioned above can be found here.
In addition to my primary pursuits, I've embarked on a journey of continuous learning both out of personal interest and to further hone my technical skills. I've been self-learning C++, sharpening my SQL skills, and diving deep into general computer science concepts through LeetCode problems. My progress can be seen on my LeetCode profile , which is available here. Furthermore, I'm actively enhancing my understanding of Machine Learning by taking courses on Coursera.