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Robin S.


Assistant Professor of Economics
Department of Economics, Harvard University

Robin S. Lee is an assistant professor of economics at Harvard University. His research interests are in industrial organization, health economics, and applied microeconomic theory. His work blends together insights from theory and data to study bargaining and contracting between firms with market power, and the implications of exclusive or selective contracting and integration on industry structure, competition and welfare. Recently, he has examined the impact of insurer competition in health care markets on premiums and provider reimbursement rates, the determination of equilibrium health care provider networks, and the welfare effects of vertical integration in content distribution and platform markets.

Lee is also a faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research and has previously served on the faculty at New York University Stern School of Business. He received his A.B. and A.M. in Economics and his Ph.D. in Business Economics from Harvard.


Research Summary


Equilibrium Insurer-Provider Networks: Bargaining and Exclusion in Health Care Markets (with Kate Ho), conditionally accepted, American Economic Review.
Previous version available as NBER Working Paper 23742.

The Welfare Effects of Vertical Integration in Multichannel Television Markets
(with Gregory Crawford, Michael Whinston and Ali Yurukoglu), accepted, Econometrica.
Previous version available as NBER Working Paper 21832.
[Online Appendix]

"Nash-in-Nash" Bargaining: A Microfoundation for Applied Work
(with Allan Collard-Wexler and Gautam Gowrisankaran), accepted, Journal of Political Economy.
Previous version available as NBER Working Paper 20641.
[Online Appendix]

Interviewing in Two-Sided Matching Markets
(with Michael Schwarz), Fall 2017, Rand Journal of Economics, 48(3): 835-855.

Hospital and Physician Prices and Treatment Choice in Labor and Delivery
(with Kyna Fong and Patricia Foo), Summer 2017, American Journal of Health Economics, 3(3): 422-453.

Insurer Competition in Health Care Markets
(with Kate Ho), March 2017, Econometrica, 85(2), 379-417.
Previous version available as NBER Working Paper 19401. This paper subsumes a previous working paper entitled Insurer Competition and Negotiated Hospital Prices.
[Online Appendix] [Related: Microeconomic Insights | LSE Business Review | Vox EU]

Competing Platforms
Fall 2014, Journal of Economics and Management Strategy, 23(3): 507-526.

Vertical Integration and Exclusivity in Platform and Two-Sided Markets
December 2013, American Economic Review, 103(7): 2960-3000.
This paper subsumes a previous working paper entitled Dynamic Demand Estimation in Platform and Two-Sided Markets: The Welfare Cost of Software Incompatibility.
[Online Appendix]

Exclusivity and Control
(with Andrei Hagiu), Fall 2011, Journal of Economics and Management Strategy, 20(3): 679-708.
[Online Appendix]

Multiple Equilibria and Selection by Learning in an Applied Setting
(with Ariel Pakes), July 2009, Economic Letters, 104(1): 13-16.


Narrow Medical Provider Networks: Welfare Implications and Approaches to Market Design
(with Kate Ho), in preparation for More Equal by Design: Economic Design Responses to Inequality, eds. Scott Duke Kominers and Alex Teytelboym, Oxford University Press.

Empirical Models of Bilateral Contracting
May 2015, Emerging Trends in the Social and Behavioral Sciences, eds. Robert A. Scott and Stephen M. Kosslyn, Wiley.

Home Videogame Platforms
August 2012, The Oxford Handbook of the Digital Economy, eds. Martin Peitz and Joel Waldfogel.

Price Discrimination in Service Industries
(with Anja Lambrecht, Katja Seim, Naufel J. Vilcassim, Amar Cheema, Yuxin Chen, Gregory Crawford, Kartik Hosanagar, Raghuram Iyengar, Oded Koenigsberg, Eugenio Miravete, Ozge Sahin), June 2012, Marketing Letters, 23(2): 423-438.

Subsidizing Creativity through Network Design: Zero Pricing and Net Neutrality
(with Tim Wu), Summer 2009, Journal of Economic Perspectives, 23(3): 61-76.

Signaling Preferences in Interviewing Markets
(with Michael Schwarz), September 2007, in Computational Social Systems and the Internet, ed. by P. Cramton, R. Müller, E. Tardos, and M. Tennenholtz, no. 07271 in Dagstuhl Seminar Proceedings, Dagstuhl, Germany.


The Price Effects of Cross-Market Hospital Mergers
(with Leemore Dafny and Kate Ho), 2017 (revise and resubmit, RAND Journal of Economics).
Available as NBER Working Paper 22106.
[Coverage: APM Marketplace]

Markov-Perfect Network Formation: An Applied Framework for Bilateral Oligopoly and Bargaining in Buyer-Seller Networks
(with Kyna Fong), 2013 (revise and resubmit, The Review of Economic Studies).


Will the Market Fix the Market? A Theory of Stock Exchange Competition and Innovation (with Eric Budish and John Shim)

Health Insurance Menu Design: Managing the Spending-Coverage Tradeoff (with Kate Ho)