Robert Ulbricht

Assistant Professor of Economics
Toulouse School of Economics

Phone: +33 (561) 128-771

Office: MF 507

Manufacture de Tabacs
21 allées de Brienne
31015 Toulouse, France

Curriculum Vitae

Working Papers

Mismatch Cycles, with Isaac Baley and Ana Figueiredo [in progress]

During recessions, highly mismatched jobs are destroyed but also created. A learning model with countercyclical uncertainty, due to occupational switching, accounts for the facts.

Information-driven Business Cycles: A Primal Approach, with Ryan Chahrour

[revised draft coming soon]

We develop a methodology to obtain a complete "information-robust" characterization of equilibria in DSGE models. In an application, we study the quantitative potential of confidence-driven fluctuations in an otherwise frictionless business cycle model.

We develop a theory of endogenous uncertainty where uncertainty is caused by financial distress. Because uncertainty reinforces financial distress, temporary shocks can lead to "funding freezes" where firms are persistently cut off from external funding.

Dynamics of  Political Systems, with Lukas Buchheim

Resubmitted, Review of Economic Studies

We develop a quantitative theory of repeated political transitions driven by revolts and reforms. We estimate the model structurally, targeting key moments from the data. The estimated model generates a process of political transitions that looks remarkably close to the data.

Resubmitted, Journal of Economic Theory

The cross-sectional dispersion of output, employment, and Solow residuals becomes countercyclical if employment and capital are gross complements. The mechanism accounts for a significant share of the empirical cyclicality in second moments, without the need for "volatility"-shocks. Additional applications use the same mechanism to explain endogenous fluctuations in risk and uncertainty.

Dynamic Oligopoly Pricing: Evidence from the Airline Industry, with Caspar Siegert

We explore how pricing dynamics in the European airline industry vary with competition
and document patterns that are consistent with intertemporal price discrimination.

The main ideas of this paper are now subsumed by the papers "Endogenous Uncertainty and Credit Crunches" and "Endogenous Second Moments"


Theoretical Economics, 11(1), January 2016, pp. 253-278.

I study a model of delegated search. The distribution of search revenues is unknown to the principal and has to be elicited from the agent. Moreover, the search process is unobservable, requiring search to be self-enforcing. The second-best is implementable by a menu of simple bonus contracts.

Current Teaching