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Friday, April 24th

Poster Number: 120

The Impact of Pay Gaps in Sport: Beyond Gender

Carleigh Greene, Winthrop University

Faculty Mentor: Jinwook (Jason) Chung, Ph.D.

The purpose of this research was to examine why there is a significantly large pay gap between LPGA and PGA players. Different individual motivational factors were analyzed as a way to uncover the true issue that exists regarding the two Tours. This study did not focus primarily on gender. The research focuses on factors including marketing, motivational factors for spectators, popularity of players, sponsorships, etc. A survey was distributed to the general population containing sixty questions. There were 137 participants who completed the survey and the results showed a lack of LPGA fans. The interest in men’s golf and the PGA was higher across the board. The discussion of this research centers on the potential explanation as to why the pay gap is exponentially larger between the LPGA and the PGA and to provide suggestions for future research.

Poster Number: 121

The Middle Class Problem

Ahmad Jones

Faculty Mentor: Louis Pantuosco, Ph.D.

This paper addresses the issue of why the middle class is shrinking in the U.S. After defining the ”middle class,” statistics will be provided on this shrinking section of American families. The following section will review factors such as the occupations of people who are considered middle class, and their levels of income. This section will shed light on factors such as the types of jobs people work and the impact those jobs have had on the shrinkage of the middle class. Literature and data will be used to show the effects of job choice and how it relates to increasing income disparity. Another question that will be addressed is why income growth among the middle class is stagnant. This paper will also explore how location affects disparity and the impact on the next generation. With a problem this complex, there are multiple solutions and potential long-term effects we can explore. A simple solution such as raising wages seems easy enough to propose, but that leads to other issues, such as remaining competitive. Also, raising wages would just lead to inflation, and people wouldn’t gain any actual wealth. Another example could be taxing the rich more heavily so that wealth can be redistributed to lower income families; this may sound good on paper, but in reality, it would cause some negative externalities. In this paper, these possible solutions will be analyzed from an economics cost-and-benefit perspective.

Poster Number: 122

Determining the Effects of Corporate Social Responsibility Programs and Wages on Turnover Rates for Fortune 500 Companies


Jacob Wacaster

Faculty Mentor: Louis Pantuosco, Ph.D.

Over the last few decades, the turnover rates for employees of Fortune 500 companies have continued to rise. As this rate continues to get higher, companies begin to lose efficiency, as they have to devote more time to training new employees and less time toward production. My research project involves looking at the effects of Corporate Social Responsibility programs and wages on turnover rates for Fortune 500 companies, in order to assess whether investing in CSR programs or raising wages will better help address the turnover issue. To determine the effect of CSR investing, I will compare the median tenure of employees in Fortune 500 companies versus their CSR score to determine a correlation coefficient between tenure and CSR score. I will then use the same process to determine the effects of wages on job satisfaction, swapping CSR scores for median pay within the same companies. Once I am able to isolate the effects of CSR scores and wages on median employee tenure, I will be able to perform a cost-benefit analysis to determine whether it would be more efficient for these companies to invest in CSR programs or raise median pay to increase median tenure and reduce employee turnover. From this analysis, conclusions will be drawn about how a Fortune 500 company should invest capital should it wish to reduce turnover in an effort to increase productivity and efficiency.

Poster Number: 123

Measuring Efficiency in The Soviet Union Labor Market


Angelica Urrego

Faculty Mentor: Louis Pantuosco, Ph.D.

Efficiency is loosely measured by accounting for the levels of productivity and costs involved for labor. This paper seeks to lay out the efficiency of the labor market during the height of the U.S.S.R.’s command system economy. Various literature on the subject argues that, contrary to common knowledge, the Soviet Union had an efficient economy. To effectively measure efficiency, this paper first examines the characteristics of the Soviet labor market from 1922 – 1991 and highlights important topics of productivity, employment, and supply and demand distinctions. A special focus is placed on the widespread shortages that gravely affected Russians throughout the years. The focus then shifts to an analysis of the lives of laborers, noting how their work days transpired and the level of discipline that the labor market conditioned them for. Finally, this paper compares the labor market trends of the U.S.S.R. with the trends of modern day Russia. Here, I examine the key changes in the labor market that have allowed for productivity to improve within the last three decades.

Poster Number: 124

Student Loan Debt and the Impact on the Labor Market

Christopher Simpson

Faculty Mentor: Louis Pantuosco Ph.D.

This paper examines the economic impact of student loan debt at the personal and national level. This issue is of high importance. There are several issues surrounding student loan debt that college students do not always consider. Collectively, the impact of these issues, particularly including the increased time that students take to get degrees, affects a large majority of college graduates. The U.S. student loan market stands at approximately $1.5 trillion—the second largest consumer debt market in the country behind mortgage debt. The American higher education system relies on loan funding as the prevailing method by which American families pay for college. Student debt spills over on individuals and communities, as well. The impact of student debt provides different outcomes on the labor market, including wages, hours of employment, and working hours. Finally, this paper examines important differences in the performance of the labor market for people who receive student loans compared to those who do not.

Poster Number: 125

Minimum Wage Effects on Seattle's Economy

Charles Seinsheimer

Faculty Mentor: Louis Pantuosco, Ph.D.

The Seattle minimum wage ordinance of 2014 set out to slowly increase Seattle's minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2021. At $15 an hour the wage would be higher than any other city in America. Depending on the size of the business and the benefits provided to the employee, the minimum wage increase will be phased in incrementally to soften a sizable increase in labor cost to the businesses. The signing of the ordinance has been a subject of some controversy in politics and in academic literature. Some workers in Seattle noted that a 7-year implementation period was too long; they wanted $15 per hour immediately. While the vote in the city council passed unanimously, the ordinance was highly controversial across the country and locally. Beyond general controversy, academic papers published surrounding the ordinance have shown contradictory views of how Seattle's business climate was affected. This paper will try to find connections between research and data to better understand how a city like Seattle was able to handle a sizable minimum wage increase. Studying the impact of minimum wage increases on Seattle workers will allow researchers to estimate how increases will impact other cities.

Poster Number: 126

Millenial Influence on Labor in the Pet Industry


Taylor Hendrix

Faculty Mentor: Louis Pantuosco, Ph.D.

The pet industry employs over a million people in the United States alone and has continued to grow and flourish every year, without taking a dip or standstill during a recession. This paper dives into the psychology and millennial influence in the pet industry. Janice Arenofsky from the Sage Business Researcher has stated that “the pet industry is considered virtually recession-resistant.” It is rare that any industry doesn’t take a hit during a recession. According to the American Pet Products Association, within the past ten years, the pet industry has nearly doubled in growth every year. The APPA also found that Americans tend to spend more on their pet care than milk, bread, or chicken. It’s come to the conclusion that most millennial households, which usually have children later in life, choose pets and treat them as part of the family. When money is limited, families continue to fund pet-related expenses for their “fur babies.”

Poster Number: 127

Understanding the Economic Impact of the Carolina Panthers Training Facility on Rock Hill


Jeremiah Hart

Faculty Mentor: Louis Pantuosco, Ph.D.

In June 2019, the construction of both a new training facility and headquarters for Charlotte’s largest sports franchise was announced. Rock Hill, South Carolina, was selected as the new site for the facilities. This decision was notable for a number of reasons: foremost, the number of new residents that would be drawn into the region via jobs created by the construction of the new facilities. In order to better understand the outcomes of the Panthers’ investment, this paper will examine similar investments in other locales by other professional sports teams. These include “The Star,” a facility constructed by the Dallas Cowboys in Frisco, Texas, and the planned “Viking Lakes” project in Minnesota. This paper will assess how different types and levels of sports facility investments impact the local job market of a city. Some notable points of focus are: What types of jobs are created? Do different types of sports facilities induce higher paying jobs? Is it possible to find a relationship between spending by the sports team and the number or type of jobs? Are they higher income jobs, or lower income? I plan to approach this topic by utilizing case studies of well-documented incentive programs and the aftermath, and, if possible, public data to provide a more quantitative approach.