AdvisorFishback, Price V.
Committee ChairFishback, Price V.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe first essay of this dissertation focuses on studying the relationship between private politics and corporate environmentalism. This work analyzes the determinants and effects of two private political actions, boycotts and proxy contests. The analysis shows that: (i) the size of a firm is an important predictor of whether a firm will be chosen as a target of an activist campaign; (ii) firms headquartered in states with larger environmental constituencies are more likely to be targeted by activist campaigns; (iii) "dirty firms" (with larger relative or absolute emissions and/or high level of regulatory scrutiny) are more likely to become targets of an activist campaign; and (iv) private political campaigns are effective in improving the environmental performance of their targets. The second essay examines the trends in Total Factor Productivity (TFP) and investigates the effects of major changes in the economy on measures of TFP in eight industries during the Interwar period from 1919 through 1939. TFP estimates show that each industry followed a different path of TFP change. There is no consistent evidence on large TFP decline during the years 1929-33 in the industries studied, as proposed in the literature. TFP measures also do not support the hypothesis that the 1930s were a period of interrupted TFP growth but there is evidence that five industries out of eight had higher productivity in the 1930s than in the 1920s. Regression analysis of major determinants of the TFP change for the motor vehicles and the cotton goods industry shows that TFP fell with increases in employment and strike activity. The NRA code might have also contributed to a decline in TFP.
Degree ProgramGraduate College