Area of Study
Email Address
Kirner-Johnson 207

Since coming to Hamilton in 1991, Paul Hagstrom has published many papers, mainly focusing on his interest and teaching field, which is the economics of poverty. His research now focuses on immigration and immigrant policy. Currently he is working on “The Role of Networks in Immigrant and Refugee Entrepreneurship.”

Hagstrom, who is involved with the President’s Planning Committee and the Oral Communication Committee, is a former director of the Arthur Levitt Public Affairs Center. He earned his master's and doctorate at the University of Wisconsin.

Recent Courses Taught

Microeconomic Theory
Principles in Economics
Economic Statistics
Public Economics
Economics of Poverty and Income Distribution
Theory and Applications of Labor Economics

Research Interests

The Role of Immigrant Networks on the Impact of Economic Shocks


  • Schwarz Research Grant, Hamilton College, 2003
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, Small Grants Program, 2001-02
  • Arthur Levitt Omnibus Grant for Refugee Research in Utica, 1999-2000
  • Emerson Foundation Grant for Student/Faculty Research, Hamilton College, 1997
  • Class of 1965 Career Development Award, Hamilton College, 1993

Selected Publications

  • “The Poverty Reduction Success of Public Transfers for Working Age Immigrants and Refugees in the United States,” with Chris Bollinger, Contemporary Economic Policy, April 2011.
  • “Food Stamp Program Participation of Refugees and Immigrants," with Chris Bollinger, Southern Economic Journal, 2007.
  • “Are Pregnant Women Happier? Racial and Ethnic Differences in the Relationship Between Pregnancy and Life Satisfaction in the United States,” with Steve Wu, Review of Economics of the Household.
  • “Credit Constraints and Job Mobility,” with Ann Owen, Journal of Income Distribution, 2008.
  • “The Demand for Credit Cards,” with Edward Castronova, Economic Inquiry, April 2004.
  • “The Wealth Effects of Income Insurance,” with Edward Bird, Review of Income and Wealth, fall 1999.
  • “Credit Cards and the Poor,” with Edward J. Bird and Robert Wild, FOCUS, Institute for Research on Poverty, summer 1999.
  • “Credit Card Debt Among the Poor: High and Rising,” with Edward Bird, Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, winter 1999.
  • "Wage Compensation for Dangerous Work Revisited," with Peter Dorman, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, October 1998.
  • "The Food Stamp Participation and Labor Supply of Married Couples: An Empirical Analysis of Joint Decisions," Journal of Human Resources, spring 1996.

College Service

Academic Council to the dean of the faculty, 1995-96
Faculty secretary, 1995-96
Presidential Focus Series Committee, 1995-96
Computer Classroom Planning Committee, 1993-95, 1997
Phi Beta Kappa, marshall (1993-95), Membership Committee (1995- 2000), vice president (1996-98), president (1998-2000)
Alumni Council, 1998-2000
Committee on Information Technology, Chair, 1998-2000
Human Subjects Institutional Review Board, 1999-2004
Council, Arthur Levitt Center for Public Affairs, 1999-2004
Chair, Social Science Space Planning Committee, 2000-01
Director, Arthur Levitt Center for Public Affairs, July 2001-04
Faculty director of Kirner-Johnson Building Project, 2004-09
Assistant golf coach and faculty advisor, 2007-
Hamilton representative, Kirkland Fellowship Committee, 2008-
President’s Planning Committee, 2010-

Appointed to the Faculty


Educational Background

Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison
M.S., University of Wisconsin-Madison
B.A., St. Olaf College

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