Steven Bond-Smith

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
Threshold regressions for more objective urban and regional policies April 4, 2024 Abstract: Achieving policy goals often requires different policies for different places, but the assignment of places to policies is often arbitrary, political, or based on anecdotal evidence. We argue that there are simple analytical techniques to improve policy by allocating places into corresponding ‘policy regimes’ in a more objective manner. We show how to implement… Read More
Waikiki Combining agglomeration economies and endogenous growth without scale effects January 19, 2024 Abstract: Increasing returns to scale is essential to both spatial economics and macroeconomic growth. Spatial externalities imply external local increasing returns that generate an uneven spatial distribution of economic activity. While non-rival knowledge also implies increasing returns – in order to endogenise growth – this is not a spatial micro-foundation. Spatial theories of growth must… Read More
Reducing fire risk and restoring value to fallow agricultural lands October 23, 2023 This blog was conceived via conversations among UHERO faculty and fellows from diverse backgrounds from environmental economics, ecosystem services, economic diversification, and fire and ecosystems. It is meant to stimulate conversation, research, and action towards pathways to address the critical problem of fire risk from unmanaged grasslands and opportunities to support more generative landscapes. We… 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
Diversifying Hawai‘i’s Specialized Economy: A Spatial Economic Perspective July 7, 2023 Abstract: Specialization in tourism exposes the economy of Hawai‘i to external shocks that trigger collapses in tourist numbers. Furthermore, Hawai‘i's economic growth has diminished for decades as the dominance of tourism has not generated productivity growth. In response, policy makers in Hawai‘i increasingly emphasize diversification. This article examines a spatial economics perspective to explain why… Read More
Hawaii’s long-term economic recovery after COVID-19 July 6, 2023 By Steven Bond-Smith The following is adapted from a speech I recently gave at the Western Regional Science Association meetings on the Big Island. My research focuses on the implications of theoretical regional economic models for small and isolated places, like Hawaii. These are places where distance matters such that they are generally unable to… Read More
Steven Bond-Smith receives the Spring 2023 CSS Research Support Award April 6, 2023 Congratulations to UHERO’s Steven Bond-Smith for receiving CSS research support funding for his project titled "Is Hawaii Being Left Behind?" Each year, the College of Social Sciences (CSS) announces the availability of funds to support faculty efforts to develop and submit a nationally competitive research grant proposal. These funds are from overhead monies (RTRF) generated… Read More
Waikiki by AussieActive on Unsplash The effects of the pandemic on the economy of Hawaii December 9, 2022 Abstract: Hawaii was vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic due to its reliance on tourism. This article analyzes the pandemic’s economic impact in Hawaii by comparing outcomes with the pre-pandemic forecast. We explain why Hawaii’s experience differed from other states, suggest reasons for a slow recovery, and discuss the pandemic’s lasting effects. Access Publication Working Paper… Read More
The work-from-home revolution and the performance of cities September 23, 2022 In this paper we set out the relationships between the behavioural, technological and spatial changes in systems that allow for heterogeneous responses to working-from-home by different types of actors, and also identifies the channels via which such changes take place. Unlike all other papers on the subject, the analytical framework we propose centers explicitly on… Read More
Construction Kakaako Diversifying Hawai‘i’s specialized economy: A spatial economic perspective August 23, 2022 Specialization in tourism exposes the economy of Hawai‘i to external shocks that trigger collapses in tourist numbers. Furthermore, Hawai‘i’s economic growth has diminished for decades as the dominance of tourism has not generated productivity growth. In response, policy-makers in Hawai‘i increasingly emphasize diversification. This article examines a spatial economics perspective to explain why Hawai‘i is… Read More
Waikiki by AussieActive on Unsplash The effects of the pandemic on the economy of Hawaii July 31, 2022 The economy of Hawaii was extremely vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic due to its heavy reliance on tourism. This article is a thorough survey of issues affecting a tourism-dependent open economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. We provide a comprehensive analysis of the pandemic’s economic impact in Hawaii by comparing the actual outcomes during the affected… Read More
Honolulu cityscape Is O‘ahu’s new Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy strategic enough? July 7, 2022 By Steven Bond-Smith The draft O‘ahu Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) for 2022-2026 is now out for public comment. The importance of the CEDS is highlighted by its requirement as a prerequisite for receiving funding from the Federal Economic Development Administration (EDA) under its Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance programs. It is also required to… Read More
Economic Impact of Astronomy in Hawai‘i: 2019 Update April 24, 2022 Astronomy continues to be a sizable and stabilizing source of economic activity. In 2019, local astronomy related expenditures in the state totaled $110.02 million with $57.18 million, $35.22 million, $0.28 million, and $17.33 million spent in Hawai‘i, Honolulu, Kaua‘i, and Maui counties respectively. Including indirect and induced benefits and adjusting for inter-county feedback effects, the… Read More
Aerial of Waikiki The cost of “excess inflation” in Hawaii April 19, 2022 By Daniela Bond-Smith, Steven Bond-Smith and Carl Bonham The cost of living in Hawaii continues to rise. In March, the Urban Hawaii (Honolulu) Consumer Price Index (CPI) was 7.5% higher than it was one year ago, squeezing household budgets and   disproportionately impacting low-income households. Honolulu last saw an elevated inflation rate of 6.0% briefly in… Read More