Waikiki Potential opportunities to diversify the economy of Hawai‘i July 2, 2024 Read the summary blog post. The economy of Hawai‘i is extraordinarily concentrated in the tourism industry. As a result of tourism’s dominance, Hawai‘i’s economy faces short-term risks from shocks that impact visitor numbers and long-term stagnation from flat and volatile tourism spending over the last three decades. In response to these issues—which became especially salient… Read More
Exploring the Gender Pay Gap in Hawai‘i May 28, 2024 The US has made substantial progress in closing the historical earnings gap between men and women, but data from the American Community Survey (ACS) shows that from 2015 to 2022 full-time working women in the US earned 84 cents for every dollar a man made. In Hawai‘i, full-time women fared slightly better, making 86 cents… Read More
The Hawaii Housing Factbook 2024 May 20, 2024 The past year has brought significant shocks to the housing market in Hawai‘i. In 2023, only one in five local households could afford a mortgage on the median-priced single-family home in the state. High interest rates make it difficult to finance a home purchase, difficult for developers to finance new construction, and disrupts the filtering… Read More
Maui Wildfire Exposure Study: Community Health, Wellbeing, and Resilience May 15, 2024 The Maui Wildfire Exposure Study (MauiWES) is the most comprehensive study focused on understanding and mitigating the health and social impacts of the Maui wildfires. It aims to fill a gap in knowledge about the effects of environmental hazards and socioeconomic challenges on the health and wellbeing of those exposed to the wildfires. Over at… Read More
How does Hawai‘i’s economic geography affect its healthcare industry? April 22, 2024 Hawai‘i’s small size and isolation present particular challenges to the healthcare industry, including lower productivity and higher costs, due to its limited ability to take advantage of economies of scale. The state’s high cost of living likely compounds these problems by hindering the recruitment of healthcare professionals who must often be hired from out-of-state. Furthermore,… Read More
Why are Condominiums so Expensive in Hawai‘i? March 4, 2024 The median sale price of a new two-bedroom condominium in Hawai‘i is about $670,000, more than double the price in the average state. In this report, we try to determine why new condominiums are so expensive in Hawai‘i. We break down the costs involved in producing condominiums to better understand the causes of high prices.… Read More
Public Health Report: Initial Findings from the Maui Wildfire Exposure Study February 8, 2024 Following the devastating wildfires from August 8-11, 2023, the Maui community has faced significant challenges including environmental hazards, air pollution, and toxic substances that pose additional long-term health risks. In response, we launched the Maui Wildfire Exposure Cohort Study (MauiWES).  Our initial findings highlight the critical health needs to address acute conditions, including depression, hypertension,… Read More
Campus View From Tantalus Estimating the Returns to Higher Education Using Administrative Data: A Case Study of the University of Hawai`i System January 16, 2024 Read the summary blog post. What is the value of a degree from the University of Hawai`i (UH)? While college tuition has significantly increasednationally, tuition within the UH system has become more affordable over the last ten years when adjusted for inflation. Despite this improved affordability, college enrollment rates among Hawai‘i’s public school graduates have… Read More
Economic Impact of the Natural Energy Laboratory Hawaii Authority Tenants on the State of Hawaii in 2022 January 12, 2024 NELHA contracted the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization (UHERO) to estimate its economic impact on the State of Hawaii. Specifically, this research determined NELHA’s contribution to local business sales, employee earnings, tax revenues, and number of jobs in Hawaii from the expenditures of its tenants in 2022. To estimate expenditures made by NELHA tenants… Read More
The Risks of Sea Level Rise: Perceptions and Policy Preferences among Hawai‘i’s Elected Officials December 4, 2023 Read the summary blog post. Due to its remote geographic location and extensive coastlines, the State of Hawai‘i is particularly vulnerable to climate change and sea level rise (SLR). While Hawai‘i was among the first states to officially recognize the climate crisis and has played a leading role in combating climate change, Hawai‘i’s lawmakers are… Read More
After the Maui wildfires: The road ahead. August 31, 2023 By Steven Bond-Smith, Daniela Bond-Smith, Carl Bonham, Leah Bremer, Kim Burnett, Makena Coffman, Peter Fuleky, Byron Gangnes, Rachel Inafuku, Ruben Juarez, Sumner La Croix, Colin Moore, Dylan Moore, Nori Tarui, Justin Tyndall, and Chris Wada The immediate recovery efforts from the devastating Maui wildfires continue, and at UHERO we share our community’s anguish over the… Read More
Public Health Report: Shaping Health in Hawaii – The Influences of Poverty, Housing and Food Insecurity July 12, 2023 In June 2023, UHERO’s public health team, in partnership with the Pacific Alliance Against COVID-19, carried out the third wave of the UHERO Rapid Health Survey. The study engaged 1,575 adult residents of Hawai‘i and examined the links between mental health, food security and socio-economic determinants like housing conditions and poverty status. UHERO Report UHERO's… Read More
The Hawai‘i Housing Factbook June 28, 2023 Residents of Hawai‘i face the highest housing costs in the nation. High housing costs lower the standard of living for residents and hinder the State’s ability to attract workers. Some households are forced to live in crowded conditions, some leave the state to find housing elsewhere, and some are forced to survive without housing at… Read More
Kaua’i County’s Economic Outlook Unveiled: UHERO Study Highlights Resilience and Future Challenges June 1, 2023 The University of Hawai‘i Economic Research Organization (UHERO) is proud to announce the publication of a Kaua‘i County-focused Economic Outlook, providing crucial insights into the economic landscape of the region for the first time since 2019. Commissioned by the County of Kaua‘i's Office of Economic Development (OED), UHERO's comprehensive study aimed to illuminate key sectors,… Read More
Public Health Report: Vaccination Booster Uptake Lags as COVID Impact Reach Widens January 5, 2023 As we enter a new phase of the pandemic, Hawai‘i’s populations are becoming more confident that the worst of the pandemic is behind us, driving COVID-19 booster uptake down. However, significant impacts exacerbated by the pandemic, including long COVID, mental health issues, and the negative effects of long COVID on unemployment pose significant challenges that warrant… Read More