Spatially Heterogeneous Effects of Publicity: Evidence from the Restaurant Industry in New York City (Revise&Resubmit, Journal of Economics & Management Strategy)
A traditional way to increase store visibility in the brick-and-mortar retail industry is to pick a location that grants a retail establishment the best visibility for a given budget. Yet recent years have witnessed increasing attention to “information visibility” in this industry because of the rapid growth in the use of information technologies. If the economic effects of information diffusion were homogeneous across locations, then it would become less optimal for retail entrepreneurs to choose traditionally favored locations. However, I find that diner responses to New York Times restaurant reviews, although significant on average, are insignificant unless the focal business is situated in a central location characterized by high customer or competitor density. These results indicate that publicity is likely to complement, but is not a substitute for, locational centrality. So for retailers offering non-tradable goods or services, an improving information environment is likely to make favored retail locations more favorable.
Work in progress
Place-based Policy, Displacement, and Spillovers in the Housing Market
News-driven House Price Momentum
Expert Reviews and Congestion Problems (with T.J. Yoon)