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Abigail Hall

Abigail Hall

  • PhD Fellow

Abby Hall is a third year PhD student in the Department of Economics at George Mason University and a second year Mercatus PhD Fellow. While an undergraduate, she was an intern at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Louisville Branch on their Economic Education team. She earned a BA in Economics and Business Administration from Bellarmine University. Abby has presented at the Eastern Economic Association annual conference and has published over a half dozen popular press pieces on economic freedom, militarization, and development.

Published Research

Abigail Hall | Mar 19, 2014
The core of Doing Bad by Doing Good: Why Humanitarian Action Fails, is an analysis of the efficacy of a variety of state-led humanitarian efforts, including domestic and foreign aid projects. Through an examination of short-term disaster relief both at home and abroad, we find that numerous inefficiencies are likely to lead to a persistent misallocation of resources.
Christopher Coyne, Abigail Hall | Dec 2013
The provision of public goods is often used to justify the state. Since many highly-valued goods such as education, national defense, roads, etc., possess some public characteristics (i.e. non-rivalry and non-excludability), standard theory predicts such goods will be underprovided by private markets. The state is typically seen as the remedy to this problem. In contrast to this typical view, this paper analyzes the private provision of public and quasi-public goods in a free society.
Peter J. Boettke, Christopher Coyne, Abigail Hall | May 2013
This Article examines the political economy of the War on Drugs with particular emphasis on the unintended consequences of drug prohibition. This Article analyzes the effects of prohibition on violence, drug potency, and cartelization in the drug market.
Christopher Coyne, Abigail Hall | Mar 2013
The ongoing “wars” on drugs and terrorism have helped to militarize domestic policing, giving us “no-knock” raids and other tactics formerly considered off-limits for civilian law enforcement. A political-economic analysis of this trend explains how crises have eroded rules that were created to constrain the use of military power and separate domestic policing from military functions.

Working Papers

Christopher Coyne, Abigail Hall | Mar 17, 2014
This paper analyzes how foreign interventions can result in a broadening of government powers and a concurrent reduction of citizens’ liberties and freedoms domestically. The authors develop an analytical framework to examine the effects of coercive foreign interventions on the scope of domestic government activities. Facing limited or altogether absent constraints abroad, coercive foreign interventions serve as a testing ground for domestically-constrained governments to experiment with new technologies and methods of social control over foreign populations.
Christopher Coyne, Abigail Hall | Sep 15, 2013
The purpose of this paper is to balance this largely one-sided treatment of the U.S. government’s dominant position in the international arms market. We discuss several negative consequences and costs associated with U.S. arms sales which call into question the net benefit of the U.S. government’s control over global arms.
Christopher Coyne, Abigail Hall | Jul 19, 2013
This paper analyzes the private provision of public and quasi-public goods in a free society. In particular, the authors examine philanthropy as an avenue through which such goods are already produced and may be provided in a society without a central government.
Abigail Hall, Christopher Coyne | Jun 26, 2013
This paper provides a political economy analysis of the evolution of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) or “drones”, in the United States. Focus is placed on the interplay between the political and private economic influences; and their impact on the trajectory of political, economic, and, in this case, military outcomes.

Research Areas