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Young Economist Prize

Young economists can play an important role in shaping the future of Europe. Every year we recognise this through the Young Economist Prize, a research competition that offers talented students the chance to share their fresh perspectives on today’s challenges.

Finalists are invited to the annual ECB Forum on Central Banking, and the overall winner is awarded €10,000.

2022 Young Economist Prize

What were the topics for 2022 paper submissions?

The theme of the 2022 ECB Forum on Central Banking is “Challenges for monetary policy in a rapidly changing world”. Accordingly, PhD students were invited to submit papers on this theme, including the following topics:

  • the short and long-term consequences of the pandemic on the labour market and modes of work, including on human capital accumulation and productivity;
  • energy markets in the post-pandemic economy, especially the effects of energy price volatility on inflation and inflation expectations;
  • globalisation, value chains, production networks and international trade in the post-pandemic economy, in particular the impact of supply bottlenecks on structural and stabilisation policies;
  • commercial and residential real estate markets in the post-pandemic economy, in particular boom-bust cycles and the implications of cross-country heterogeneity in real estate markets for prudential and macroeconomic stabilisation policies;
  • the role of inflation expectations in monetary policy decisions;
  • central bank digital currencies and crypto-assets, and their implications for the conduct of monetary policy.

Papers on other topics relevant to euro area central banking (including monetary policy, new means of payment and payments infrastructures, the deepening of Economic and Monetary Union, the functioning of the euro area economy and financial system, financial stability, and banking regulation and supervision) will also be considered.

How did we select the finalists?

The papers were assessed using three selection criteria: (i) innovative thinking and scientific merit, (ii) relevance for euro area policy, and (iii) pertinence to the Forum theme and aforementioned topics, also taking into account the information provided in the CV and recommendation letter.

What did they do at the Forum?

The ten selected finalists had the unique opportunity to attend the ECB Forum on Central Banking, which took place from 27 to 29 June 2022. The work of the selected finalists, as well as research posters summarising the main findings of their papers, is available on the ECB’s website and has been shared with all Forum participants, including policymakers, top academics and market economists from around the world.

During the Forum, finalists had the opportunity to attend a varied programme of panel discussions and expert talks.

The finalists’ papers and research posters were assessed by a jury of top academics and senior ECB staff, taking into account votes cast by Forum participants. Please see the prize rules for further details.

Congratulations to Federico Kochen from New York University, the winner of the 2022 prize!

After the 2022 Forum, which was based on the topic “Challenges for monetary policy in a rapidly changing world”, our moderator Claire Jones, together with the non-grading chairman of the selection committee Philipp Hartmann, conducted an interview with Federico Kochen, in which he summarised his paper and explained why it is relevant for policymakers and the economy.

Federico Kochen

New York University

Finance over the life cycle of firms

“Using a macro model consistent with micro data on European firms’ external financing over their lifetime, I find that financial frictions lead to big output losses, due mainly to young firms’ early exits. Middle-income countries see 60% higher losses than high-income countries.”

Meet the other 2022 finalists

Find out more about our other nine finalists and their fields of research.

Alice Eliet-Doillet

Swiss Finance Institute and EPFL

Can central banks help scale up green finance?

“We study the effect of the ECB’s recent announcement of its intention to include climate criteria in its corporate bond purchase programme. We find that it reduced the cost of green bond financing and encouraged firms domiciled in the eurozone to issue green bonds.”

Martina Fraschini

Swiss Finance Institute and Department of Finance, HEC Lausanne, University of Lausanne

CBDC and quantitative easing

“A central bank digital currency (CBDC) is a new type of money, i.e. a digital central bank liability available to everyone. We find that issuing a CBDC while conducting quantitative easing could reduce lending and make it difficult to taper the central bank’s balance sheet.”

José-Elías Gallegos

IIES, Stockholm University

Macroeconomics and belief formation

“I study the role of information frictions in the macroeconomy. My research shows that a change in US firms’ belief formation in the 1980s can explain two empirical challenges: the fall in inflation persistence and the flattening of the Phillips curve.”

April Meehl

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Bail-in policy leads to fewer bank failures

“After the 2008 financial crisis, the European Union adopted a new bail-in tool for dealing with failures of big banks. Comparing banks’ bailout and bail-in expectations, I show that bail-in expectations lead to fewer big bank failures, with only a small decrease in total lending.”

Leanne Nam

University of Bonn

Optimal pension systems and job stability

“Heterogeneity in job stability is a salient feature of labour markets and a source of lifetime earnings inequality. My project shows that progressive pension systems based on labour market histories lead to welfare gains by insuring against heterogeneity in job stability.”

Oliver Pfäuti

University of Mannheim

Expectations and household heterogeneity

“Households vary and their expectations often deviate from rational expectations. My research shows that allowing for these two frictions brings the theory closer to the data, particularly when it comes to policy effectiveness and transmission.”

Stefano Pica

Boston University

Housing markets and euro area monetary policy

“Monetary policy effects vary greatly across euro area countries, owing largely to individual features of housing and mortgage markets. I show that a euro area-wide mortgage market with shared financial regulation would help even out the impact of monetary policy across countries.”

Ciaran Rogers

Stanford University

Quantitative easing and local banking systems in the euro area

“This paper studies how the ECB’s asset purchases affect the real economy through banks. My focus is on the liquidity services banks offer via the deposits they issue. I show that asset purchases are effective, as they help banks provide more deposits to local markets by generating new liquid reserves.”

Claire Thürwächter

IIES, Stockholm University

Monetary policy and high-growth firms

“High-growth firms are important for the economy since they create jobs and foster innovation. How do their investments react to changes in the central bank’s interest rate? Using firm-level data, I show that they are not affected by such changes.”


Find out more about related content

ECB Forum on Central Banking 2022

The ECB Forum on Central Banking is an annual event organised by the European Central Bank and is held in Sintra, Portugal.

Find out more

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