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Alexander Rothenberg

Alexander Rothenberg

Contact Information:


426 Eggers Hall

Office Hours:

By appointment

Staff Support:

Alyssa Kirk


Alexander Rothenberg

Assistant Professor, Economics Department

Senior Research Associate, Center for Policy Research


Fall 2023

ECN 441.001 Urban Economics, Tuesday & Thursday 9:30-10:50, Hall of Languages 205

ECN 310.001 Cities in Developing Countries, Tuesday & Thursday 11:00-12:20, Hall of Languages 202

Highest degree earned

Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2012


Alexander D. Rothenberg is an Assistant Professor of Economics and a Senior Research Associate in the Center for Policy Research. He is an applied microeconomist whose research interests lie at the intersection of development and urban economics. Prior to joining the Maxwell School, Rothenberg was an economist at the RAND Corporation, and a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School.

His research studies the effects of different urban, regional and private-sector policy interventions. Using a combination of reduced form and structural techniques, his work examines the causal impacts of these policies on growth and development outcomes, whether they have adverse, unintended consequences, and how they might be improved.

His ongoing research evaluating the effects of rapid motorization on commuting outcomes and urban spatial structure in Jakarta, the long-term growth and development outcomes of a place-based policy in Indonesia's outer Islands, the relationship between urban sprawl and residential carbon emissions, and the effect of relocating Indonesia's capital on output and welfare.

Rothenberg received a Ph.D. in economics from the University of California, Berkeley in 2012.

Areas of Expertise

Urban economics, development economics, applied econometrics

Research Interests

Transportation, place-based policies, spatial equilibrium models, local labor markets, trade and development

Research Grant Awards and Projects

• Evaluating the Relocation of Indonesia’s Capital: A Quantitative Spatial Model Approach (2023-2024)

  • Role: Principal Investigator


• The Welfare Effects of Motorization: Evidence from Jakarta (2022-2023)

  • Role: Principal Investigator


• The Political Economy of Slums: Evidence from Manila (2021-2022)

  • Role: Principal Investigator


• The Consequences of Urban Sprawl in Developing Countries: Economic, Environmental, and Social Outcomes (2020-2022)

  • Role: Principal Investigator


• Place Based Policies in Indonesia (2018)

  • Role: Principal Investigator


• Civelli, A., A. Gaduh, A. Rothenberg, and Y. Wang (2023): “Urban Sprawl and Social Capital: Evidence from Indonesian Cities”, The Economic Journal 133 (654): 2110-2146.

• Gaduh, A., T. Gracner, and A. Rothenberg (2022) “Life in the Slow Lane: Bus Rapid Transit and Commuting Outcomes in Jakarta”, Journal of Urban Economics 128: 103411.

• Bazzi, S., A. Gaduh, A. Rothenberg, and M. Wong (2019) “Unity in Diversity? How Intergroup Contact Can Foster Nation Building.” American Economic Review 109 (11): 3978-4025.

• Bazzi, S., A. Gaduh, A. Rothenberg, and M. Wong (2016) “Skill Transferability, Migration, and Development: Evidence from Population Resettlement in Indonesia.” American Economic Review 106 (9): 2658-98.

• Rothenberg, A., A. Gaduh, N. Burger, C. Chazali, I. Tjandraningsih, R. Radikun, C. Sutera, and S. Weilant (2016) “Rethinking Indonesia’s Informal Sector.” World Development 80: 96-113.