Hanno Hilbig

Ph.D. Candidate
Department of Government
Harvard University

Curriculum Vitae

I am a PhD candidate in the Government department at Harvard. My research lies at the intersection of Comparative Politics and Political Economy, focusing on the political repercussions of regional and individual economic disparities in advanced democracies in Europe. In my dissertation, I explore how local governments respond to adverse economic shocks. In my job market paper, I study how the Great Recession affected local tax policy in Germany. In additional published and ongoing research, I examine three related research areas: (i) the relationship between economic inequality and political behavior, (ii) economic disparities between immigrants and natives (iii) how growing regional disparities in local news presence affect polarization and political knowledge.

I explore these topics using novel data sets, ranging from self-collected survey data to archival data or large-scale administrative data sets. My empirical work pays close attention to causal inference and employs identification strategies such as regression discontinuity designs, field experiments, and matching designs. My publications and working papers are listed below and on my Google Scholar page.

I am also a research fellow in the Multidisciplinary Program in Inequality and Social Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. I am currently visiting the Institutions and Political Inequality Group at WZB Berlin.


  1. Do Inheritance Customs Affect Political and Social Inequality? 2019. (with Anselm Hager). American Journal of Political Science, 63 (4): 758-773. [Abstract]  
  2. Does Public Opinion Affect Political Speech? 2020. (with Anselm Hager). American Journal of Political Science, 64 (4): 921-937. [Abstract]  
  3. Locked Out of College: When Admissions Bureaucrats Do and Do Not Discriminate (with Jacob Brown). Forthcoming, British Journal of Political Science. [Abstract]  

Working papers

  1. Freedom of Movement Restrictions Inhibit the Psychological Integration of Refugees (with Sascha Riaz). R&R, Journal of Politics. [Abstract]  
  2. Wealth of Tongues: Why Peripheral Regions Vote for the Radical Right in Germany (with Daniel Bischof and Daniel Ziblatt). R&R, American Political Science Review. [Abstract]  
  3. Media Monopolies Increase Misperceptions about Immigration: Evidence from German Local Newspapers (with Sascha Riaz). [Abstract]  
  4. Refugee Labor Market Access Increases Support for Migration (With Anselm Hager and Sascha Riaz). [Abstract]  
  5. Government Spending and Voting Behavior (With Anselm Hager). [Abstract]  
  6. Local Newspaper Decline and Political Polarization (With Fabio Ellger, Sascha Riaz and Philipp Tillman). [Abstract]  
  7. Political and Social Correlates of Covid-19 Mortality (with Constantin Manuel Bosancianu, Macartan Humphreys, Sampada KC, Nils Lieber and Alex Scacco) [Abstract]  

Ongoing work

  1. Party Nominations and Female Electoral Performance: Evidence from Germany (with Pia Raffler and Thomas Fujiwara) [Abstract]  
  2. Citizen Demands and Strategic Responsiveness in Autocratic Regimes - Evidence from the German Democratic Republic (with Hans Lueders and Sascha Riaz) [Abstract]  
  3. Does Rent Control Turn Tenants Into NIMBYs? (with Anselm Hager and Robert Vief) [Abstract]  
  4. Identification and Estimation of Controlled Direct Effects under Difference-in-Differences Designs (with Matthew Blackwell, Adam Glynn and Connor Phillips)