Research

Peer-Reviewed Publications

A utility approach to accelerate universal electricity access in less developed countries: A regulatory proposal”. IJ. Pérez-Arriaga, R. Stoner, R. Rahnama, S. Lee, G. Jacquot, E. Protzer, A. Garcia, R. Amatya, M. Brusnahan, and P. Dueñas, Economics of Energy & Environmental Policy 8 (1): 33-50 (2019).

Working Papers/In-Progress

Monumental Changes? Confederate Symbol Removals and Racial Attitudes in the United States (working draft available here)

Abstract: Scholars have long contended that symbols play an important role in politics, yet existing research tells us little about how physical and rhetorical contestations around symbols impact public opinion. This paper uses two waves of Confederate symbol removals in the United States to examine how local changes in the built environment, in conjunction with salient national events, shape racial attitudes and prejudice-motivated violence. Using a difference-in-differences strategy with repeated cross-sectional and panel data, I find that the removal of Confederate symbols, on average, decreased racial resentment, increased support for affirmative action, increased warm feelings (as measured with thermometer scores) toward Blacks, and decreased anti-Black hate crimes, particularly by White offenders. These effects are strongest at the hyper-local level and decay with distance. These findings add to growing research on symbolic change and the politics of commemoration and historical memory in the US and abroad.

Policy Publications

Energy and Environmental Policy Papers (Pre-PhD)

Determinants of WTP among energy poor households: implications for planning models and frameworks“. R. Rahnama. Oxford Institute for Energy Studies Paper (EL 35): 1-33 (2019).

Electrification planning with a focus on human factors”. R. Rahnama and IJ. Pérez-Arriaga. Oxford Energy Forum (115): 30-34 (2018).