Yonas Alem


Environment for
Visiting address
Vasagatan 1
41124 Göteborg
Postal address
Box 600
40530 Göteborg

About Yonas Alem

Yonas Alem is a Senior Research Fellow at the Environment for Development. He is also the Director of Academic Programs, primarily responsible for the academic management of the collaborative Ph.D. programs jointly run by the Department of Economics, University of Gothenburg, with African universities. Alem received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Gothenburg in 2011. From 2011-2019, he served as the Research Director of Environment for Development and has been a visiting scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, and Brown University. During the past decade, he has taught Ph.D. courses in Panel Data Econometrics, Impact Evaluation, and Development Economics and supervised several Ph.D. students at the University of Gothenburg and other universities. His research is in the intersection of development economics, environmental economics, and behavioral and experimental economics - with a particular focus on the impact of risk and shocks, technology adoption, preference formation, decision-making, and poverty dynamics in the developing regions of Africa and South Asia.

Current Positions and Affiliations

Senior Research Fellow, Environment for Development (EfD)

Director, Academic Programs (EfD)

Invited Researcher, Jameel-Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), King-Climate Initiative (K-CAI)

Peer-Reviewed Publications

Alem, Y. Kocher, M., Shurz, S., Carlsson, F. & Lindahl, M. Social Preference Networks, Forthcoming Experimental Economics.

Alem, Y., Hassen, S., and Köhlin, G. Decision-making within the Household: The Role of Division of Labor and Differences in Preferences, Forthcoming, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization.

Alem, Y., & Dugoua, E. Passive Learning and Incentivized Communication: A Randomized Controlled Trial in India Economic Development and Cultural Change, 71(1).

Alem, Y., & Colmer, J. (2022). Blame it on the rain: Rainfall variability, consumption smoothing, and subjective well-being in rural Ethiopia, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 104(3): 905-920.

Alem, Y., Behrend, H., Belot, M., & Biro, A.. (2021). Mind Training, Stress and Behaviour - a Randomised Experiment, PLOS ONE, 16(11): e0258172.

Alem, Y., & Demeke, E. (2020). The Persistence of Energy Poverty: A Dynamic Probit Analysis, Energy Economics, 90: 1-11.

Ruhinduka, R., Alem, Y., Eggert, H., & Lybbert, T. (2020). Paddy Post-Harvest: The Role of Prefer- ences in Storage and Processing Decisions of Tanzanian Rice Farmers, European Review of Agricultural Economics, 47(4): 1587-1620.

Alem, Y & Andersson, L. (2019). International Remittances and Private Inter-household Transfers: Exploring the Links, European Journal of Development Research, 31: 902-928.

Alem, Y., Eggert, H., Kocher, M., & Ruhinduka, R. (2018). Why (Field) Experiments on Unethical Behavior are Important: Comparing Stated and Revealed Behavior, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 156: 71-85.

Alem, Y., & Broussard, H. N. (2018). The impact of Safety Nets on Technology Adoption: A Difference- in-differences Analysis, Agricultural Economics, 49(1): 13-24.

Alem, Y., Damte, A., Köhlin, G., & Mekonen, A. (2016). Modelling Household Cooking Fuel Choice: a Random Effects Multinomial Logit Analysis, Energy Economics, 59: 129-137.

Alem, Y., Eggert, H., & Ruhinduka, R. (2015). Improving Welfare through Climate-friendly Agriculture: The Case of the System of Rice Intensification, Environmental and Resource Economics, 62: 243-263.

Alem, Y., (2015). Poverty persistence and intra-household heterogeneity in occupations: Evidence from urban Ethiopia, Oxford Development Studies, 43(1): 20-43.

Alem, Y., Hassen, S., & Köhlin, G. (2014). Adoption and Disadoption of Electric Cookstoves in Urban Ethiopia: Evidence from Panel Data, Resource and Energy Economics, 38: 110-124.

Sterner, T., Alem, Y. et al., (2014). The Environment for Development Initiative: lessons learned in re- search, academic capacity building and policy intervention to manage resources for sustainable growth, Environment and Development Economics, 19(3): 367-391.

Alem, Y., Köhlin, G., & Stage, J. (2014). The Persistence of subjective Poverty in Urban Ethiopia, World Development, 56: 51-61.

Alem, Y., and Köhlin, G. (2013). The Impact of Food Price Inflation on Subjective Well-being: Evidence from Urban Ethiopia, Social Indicators Research, 116: 853-868.

Ekbom, A., Alem, Y., and Sterner, T. (2013). Integrating Soil Science into Agricultural Production Frontiers. Environment and Development Economics, 18(3): 291-308.

Alem, Y., and Söderbom, M., (2012). Household-level consumption in urban Ethiopia: The effects of a large food price shock. World Development, 40: 146-162.

Alem, Y., Bezabih, M., Kassie, M., and Zikhali, P. (2010). Does fertilizer use respond to rainfall variability? Panel data evidence from Ethiopia. Agricultural Economics, 41: 165-175.

Articles Under Consideration

Alem, Y., & Tato, G. Shocks and Emotional Well-being: Panel Data Evidence from South Africa (Revise & Resubmit, World Development)

Alem, Y. Mitigating Climate Change through Sustainable Technology Adoption: Insights from Cook- stove Interventions (Revise & Resubmit, Energy Economics).

Alem, Y. & Ruhinduka, R. Saving Africa’s Tropical Forests through Energy Transition: a Randomised Controlled Trial in Tanzania (Under Review).

Alem, Y., and Abebe, M. Drought, Livestock Holding, and Milk Production: A Difference-in-Differences Analysis (Under Review)

Ongoing Research

The Impact of a Large-Scale Drought on Technology Adoption: Teasing Out the Mechanisms (With Meseret Abebe, AAU-Gothenburg)

Inconsistency Across Inter-temporal Choices (With John Loeser, the World Bank Group and Aprajit Mahajan, University of California Berkeley)

The Impact of Improved Cookstoves Beyond Fuelwood Saving: A Randomized Controlled Trial in Rural Ethiopia (With Seid Hassen, Policy Study Institute)

Weather Shocks Increase Calorie Consumption: Understanding the Paradox (With Meseret Abebe, AAU-Gothenburg)