Pablo Warnes on transport infrastructure improvements and spatial sorting

WIDER Seminar Series

Pablo Warnes on transport infrastructure improvements and spatial sorting: evidence from Buenos Aires

Pablo Warnes will present at the WIDER Seminar Series on 20 April 2022.

Transport infrastructure improvements and spatial sorting: evidence from Buenos Aires


How do improvements in the urban transport infrastructure affect the spatial sorting of residents with different levels of income and education within a city? What are the welfare effects of improving urban transit once we take into account these patterns of spatial sorting? In this paper, he studies the effects of the construction of a bus rapid transit system (BRT) on the spatial reorganization of residents within the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina. To do so, he leverages an individual level panel data set of more than two million residents with which he can describe intra-city migration patterns. He first finds reduced form evidence that the construction of the BRT increased the spatial segregation between high and low-skilled residents within the city. He then develops a dynamic quantitative spatial equilibrium model of a city with heterogeneous workers that allows him to quantify the welfare effects of this BRT system while taking into account these spatial sorting patterns. With this quantitative framework, he can measure the average welfare gains for residents that were living near the BRT lines before these were built.

About the speaker

Pablo Warnes is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics at Aalto University. His research interests are mainly in the fields of Urban Economics, International Trade, Development Economics, and Applied Microeconomics in general.

WIDER Seminar Series

The WIDER Seminar Series showcases the latest research on key topics in development economics. It provides a forum for for visiting scholars, UNU-WIDER researchers, external researchers, policymakers and industry specialists to present their research.

In addition to providing a forum for both academic debate and training, the series presents an opportunity for policymakers and others interested in development to learn about the latest research methods and findings.

The Seminar Series takes place on Wednesdays. All those interested are invited to register and attend via Zoom.