IGM Research Professionals

The Initiative on Global Markets has played a critical role in launching the careers of ambitious young research professionals in global economics, public policy, and other fields. Research professionals typically spend two years at Chicago Booth, working closely with some of the world’s top researchers in economics, finance, and accounting before going on to doctoral programs or careers in economics, business, or related fields.

Past Research Professionals


Sebastian Hanson

Sebastian Hanson
2018–19

Sebastian Hanson assisted professor Amir Sufi with his research on credit supply shocks and household debt.

Prior to joining IGM, Hanson earned a master’s degree in finance and economics (with distinction) from the London School of Economics and Political Science, as well as two undergraduate degrees in economics and applied mathematics from the University of Mannheim. He also gained work experience as an intern for NERA Economic Consulting in Berlin and the financial services consulting team of KPMG in Frankfurt, Germany.

After working with IGM for a year, he entered the PhD program at Stanford University.

Tu Cao

Tu cao
2016–18

Tu Cao assisted professor Amir Sufi with his research on the role of partisan bias in shifting economic expectations and its potential effects on consumption expenditures. She also worked on the European private-firm level dataset from Bureau van Dijk.

Previously, she assisted professor Eric Budish with his research in market design. She graduated summa cum laude from Dickinson College in 2016 with a BSc in economics and mathematics. Prior to her work at IGM, she worked for Moody’s Analytics as a research intern. Her current research interests include econometrics and monetary macroeconomics.

After working with IGM for two years, she entered the PhD program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Seongjin Park

Seongjin Park
2015–17

Seongjin Park assisted professor Amir Sufi in examining the announcement effects of credit facility. He also constructed IGM’s GDP and Personal Income dataset by working on the database of the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

He also assisted Sufi with his research on the effect of gas price changes on consumption behavior and worked on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ database to construct a comprehensive dataset of inflation, employment, and wages.

Park graduated from Korea University with bachelor’s degrees in business administration and financial engineering. He also earned an MA in economics from Duke University. His research interests include the development of capitalism, corporate governance, investment, and household finance. After working with IGM for two years, he entered the PhD Program at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

 Yingcong (Michael) Tang

Yingcong (Michael) Tang
2013–14

Michael Tang assisted professor Anil Kashyap on his study of US monetary policies and banking systems. He also helped professor Christian Leuz and former Booth professor Bryan Kelly with their research projects.

Tang received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University and a master of financial engineering from the University of California-Los Angeles. Before joining IGM, he was a research assistant for professor Hanno Lustig at UCLA and worked in a hedge fund as a summer associate.

After working with IGM for one year, he entered the PhD program in finance at the University of California-Los Angeles.

Bruno Pellegrino

Bruno Pellegrino
2012–14

Bruno Pellegrino assisted professor Luigi Zingales in researching the Italian economy and professor Christian Leuz in researching credit risk premia in the high-yield bond market. He has a BSc in international economics from Bocconi University of Milan and an MSc in finance and economics from the London School of Economics. Before joining IGM, he spent a year and a half in London, working as a junior economist and strategist for Credit Suisse.

After working with IGM, Pellegrino entered the doctoral program at the University of California-Los Angeles.

Conor Devitt

Conor Devitt
2011–13

Conor Devitt worked with professors Anil Kashyap and Austan Goolsbee on corporate cash holdings and investment activity during the financial crisis.

Devitt graduated from Trinity College Dublin, with a bachelor’s degree in electronic and computer engineering (2007) and an MSc in economics (2008). He then worked for two years in energy economics at the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) in Dublin before moving to Chicago to join IGM.

After completing his time at IGM, he entered the Full-Time MBA Program at Chicago Booth.

Cecilia Gamba

Cecilia Gamba
2010–12

Cecilia Gamba worked with professor Luigi Zingales on executive compensation and bonus incentive schemes.

Gamba studied at the University of Bologna, Italy, where she completed both her bachelor’s degree (2006) and her master’s degree (2008) in economics, with a focus on economic policy. In her thesis, she analyzed the effects of school quality on economic growth in Italian regions. During her studies, she participated in academic exchanges at the University of Melbourne in Australia and the Université Libre de Bruxelles in Belgium. Her interests include the economics of education and human capital.

László Jakab

László Jakab
2010–12

László Jakab worked with professor Christian Leuz and studied the effect of conflict-of-interest disclosure on the perceived quality of medical research.

He also coauthored a working paper on the response of US state economies to natural disasters and the monetary return on FEMA disaster relief with University of Chicago professor Ali Hortaçsu and former Booth professor Tobias Moskowitz.

Jakab graduated from the University of Chicago in 2010 with a bachelor’s in economics. As an undergraduate he was a research assistant for Professor Hortaçsu. His research interests include the effect of social interactions on economic decision-making.

After his work with IGM, Jakab went on to pursue his PhD in economics at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Denis Echtchenko
2009–10

During his stay with IGM, Denis Echtchenko worked with professor Christian Leuz on studies dealing with fair-value accounting during the financial crisis of 2008–09, international patterns in securities regulation, and the effect of conflict-of-interest disclosures on the citing patterns in medical research.

Echtchenko graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Chicago in 2009 with a double major in economics and history (with honors). He left IGM after accepting a position with an investment bank.

 Denrick Bayot

Denrick Bayot
2008–09

Denrick Bayot assisted professor Luigi Zingales on corporate governance and its relationship to the 2008 financial crisis. He also assisted professor Christian Leuz on financial regulation and conflict-of-interest disclosures.

Bayot earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics with honors from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas in 2008. In 2009, he completed his master’s degree in mathematical science, also from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas. Prior to conducting research in economics, he published in the area of combinatorics/graph theory. His personal research includes assessing the impact of remittances on household child-labor decisions in Mexico and finding the friendly-index set of various graphs.

Bayot entered the PhD program at the University of Chicago Department of Economics in the fall of 2009.

Ashish Shenoy

Ashish Shenoy
2008–10

At IGM, Ashish Shenoy worked with professor Christian Leuz on evaluating international financial accounting standards and fair-value reporting in the United States; former Booth professor Adair Morse on tracking the spending of large sovereign wealth funds; and professor Anil Kashyap on pricing strategies for large retailers using Dominick’s data housed in the James M. Kilts Center for Marketing.

Shenoy graduated from Stanford University in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in economics (with honors and with distinction). He wrote his thesis on the integration of world wheat markets. In the fall of 2010, he entered the doctoral program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Biliana Kassabova

Biliana Kassabova
2007–08

Biliana Kassabova worked with professor Anil Kashyap on pricing, using the Kilts Center’s Dominick’s dataset; with professor Raghuram Rajan on creating reports on the state of the financial sectors of the Indian economy; and with professor Brian Barry on research on business and politics.

Kassabova graduated from the University of Chicago in 2007 with a double major in economics and Romance languages and literatures (with honors).

Bennett Surajat

Bennett Surajat
2007–08

Bennett Surajat was involved in research projects that studied investment spikes, corporate fraud, and monetary policy.

In 2007, Surajat graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Carleton College with a bachelor’s degree in economics (with honors). At Carleton, he was a teaching assistant for Pavel Kapinos. Surajat wrote his senior thesis on the convergence mechanism among core EU members.