Carlos Lamarche: 2024-25 University Research Professor Q&A

Carlos Lamarche, Ph.D., is the director of graduate studies and Gatton Endowed Professor of Economics in the UK Gatton College of Business and Economics. Jeremy Blackburn, Research Communications
Lamarche studies econometrics — a combination of economics, statistics and mathematics that aims to give empirical content to economic relationships. Jeremy Blackburn, Research Communications

UKNow is highlighting the University of Kentucky’s 2024-25 University Research Professors.Established by the Board of Trustees in 1976, the professorship program recognizes excellence across the full spectrum of research at UK and is sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for Research.  

LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 18, 2024) — Carlos Lamarche, Ph.D., director of graduate studies and Gatton Endowed Professor of Economics in the University of Kentucky Gatton College of Business and Economics, has been honored as a 2024-25 University Research Professor.

Lamarche studies econometrics — a combination of economics, statistics and mathematics that aims to give empirical content to economic relationships. He focuses on the development of estimation methods for a more informative and robust analysis of microeconomic data.

He also holds a joint appointment as a professor of statistics in the College of Arts and Sciences. His work since joining UK in 2012 has gained national and international recognition.

Lamarche is currently a co-editor at the Southern Economic Journal and associate editor of Empirical Economics.

He spoke with UKNow about his latest honor as a University Research Professor in this Q&A.

UKNow: What does it mean to you to be recognized as a University Research Professor?

Lamarche: It is a tremendous honor to be recognized as a University Research Professor. I am thankful for the recognition and the support from Dean Simon Sheather, Associate Dean for Research John Peloza and the Chair of the Economics Department Jim Ziliak.

UKNow: How will the professorships program advance your research?

Lamarche: This wonderful opportunity will help me to continue addressing scientific problems related to heterogeneity in the estimation of economic models.

UKNow: How does your research address challenges facing Kentucky?

Lamarche: Part of my recent research with a former Ph.D. student who is at Columbia University has focused on the impact of the welfare reform introduced in the 1990s. The reform was on a program that provided cash assistance to millions of low-income families with dependent children. We found that the new program reduced welfare dependence across generations. However, daughters who grew up on welfare were economically no better off after reform and were more likely to participate in other assistance programs. These results contribute to the design of programs intended to improve the well-being of disadvantaged families in Kentucky and the U.S.

UKNow: What impact will your research have on Kentucky?

Lamarche: In recent years I developed statistical methods for “big data” using regularization/machine learning methods. With colleagues in the Department of Statistics and other departments at UK, we are working to promote research collaboration in artificial intelligence/machine learning across disciplines in a newly formed UK Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning Hub. I am excited about these opportunities, and I know researchers at UK are too.

About the University Research Professors
Each year, the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees approves a cohort of faculty as University Research Professors. The distinction recognizes excellence in work that addresses scientific, social, cultural and economic challenges in Kentucky and the world.

College leadership developed criteria for excellence within their area of expertise and then nominated faculty who excelled at these criteria. Each University Research Professor receives a one-year award of $10,000 and participates in other events planned around the program.

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