Publications

2020
Cascades - Mapping the multi-disciplinary landscape in a post-pandemic world
D., Felsenstein, Shmueli D.F., and Thomas D.S.K. 2020. “Cascades - Mapping the multi-disciplinary landscape in a post-pandemic world”. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction 51. Publisher's VersionAbstract

This paper introduces the Special Issue on Cascading Effects in Disaster Risk Management. It reviews the contributions and highlights their multi-disciplinary interpretations of cascades. It proceeds to discuss whether the on-going unfolding of the COVID-19 pandemic illustrates the cascades metaphor.

Post-Processing HAZUS Earthquake Damage and Loss Assessments for Individual Buildings
D., Felsenstein, Elbaum E., Levi T., and Calvo R. 2020. “Post-Processing HAZUS Earthquake Damage and Loss Assessments for Individual Buildings”. Natural Hazards. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Building damage probabilities are invaluable for assessing short-term losses from natural hazards. In many countries however, the individual building level data required for assessing reliable damage are usually unavailable. This paper shows how the post-processing of aggregate HAZUS earthquake damage assessments can yield building-level damage probabilities. On the basis of three plausible scenarios for Northern Israel, we generate and visualize a building-level combined damage probability index. We use the tools of exploratory spatial data analysis to purge any causal influences in the spatial pattern of these calculated damage probabilities. The costs and benefits of our approach are discussed.

A Solution for Absent Spatial Data: the Common Correlated Effects Estimator
M., Beenstock, and Felsenstein D. 2020. “A Solution for Absent Spatial Data: the Common Correlated Effects Estimator”. International Regional Science Review. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Informed regional policy needs good regional data. As regional data series for key economic variables are generally absent whereas national-level time series data for the same variables are ubiquitous, we suggest an approach that leverages this advantage. We hypothesize the existence of a pervasive “common factor” represented by the national time series that affects regions differentially. We provide an empirical illustration in which national FDI is used in place of panel data for FDI, which are absent. The proposed methodology is tested empirically with respect to the determinants of regional demand for housing. We use a quasi-experimental approach to compare the results of a “common correlated effects” (CCE) estimator with a benchmark case when absent regional data are omitted. Using three common factors relating to national population, income and housing stock, we find mixed support for the common correlated effects hypothesis. We conclude by discussing how our experimental design may serve as a methodological prototype for further tests of CCE as a solution to the absent spatial data problem.

Cascading effects of a disaster on the labor market over the medium to long term
D., Felsenstein, and Grinberger A.Y. 2020. “Cascading effects of a disaster on the labor market over the medium to long term”. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction. Publisher's VersionAbstract

We present an economic definition of cascading effects of a disaster on the labor market over the medium to long term. Cascading effects are considered events that alter local amenities. In the context of the labor market, the standard conception of a cascade as a sequence of events that alter the capital stock, may not be very instructive as the immediate time horizon is not the relevant economic timeframe. We outline some of the theoretical implications arising from this definition and give them some intuition based on an agent based simulation model. The model is used to simulate two cascade-type scenarios following an earthquake in the city of Jerusalem. Results indicate that a strong cascading effect in the labor market depends on serious functional change in the physical environment i.e. land-use change. Flow-related changes in labor and population movement are less likely to create effects that cascade into other sub-markets. Implications of these findings point to the key role of labor mobility as workers seek solutions outside the area struck by disaster.

Long-term housing affordability in spatial general equilibrium
M., Beenstock, Felsenstein D., and Xieer D. 2020. “Long-term housing affordability in spatial general equilibrium”. Housing Studies. Publisher's VersionAbstract

We argue that housing affordability is as much about incomes as it is about house prices. Consequently, a comprehensive analysis of housing affordability should be conducted in which incomes and house prices are determined through the specification of labor, capital and product markets in addition to housing markets. A spatial econometric model for Israel is used to study the effects on the regional distribution of housing affordability of income generating shocks in labor and capital markets, as well as supply shocks in housing markets. Particular attention is paid to the effects on affordability of planning delays in tendering land for housing construction and the issue of building permits. Spatiotemporal impulse responses for housing affordability show that region-specific shocks, such as accelerated planning permission and the provision of regional investment grants, percolate across the economy as a whole. Implications for place-based regional policy are discussed.

Identifying local housing markets through revealed preference
M., Beenstock, Feldman D., and Felsenstein D. 2020. “Identifying local housing markets through revealed preference”. Journal of Property Research 37 (2):118-146. Publisher's VersionAbstract

A new empirical approach to identify local housing markets (LHM’s) is proposed, which focuses on the spatial correlation between local house price indices constructed from repeat sales data. It extends the work of Pryce who claimed that if housing in different locations are perfect substitutes, their house price indices should be perfectly correlated over time. Pryce’s work represents a paradigmatic change in identifying local housing markets using revealed preferences rather than hedonic pricing. It requires spatial panel data for house prices which we construct using repeated sales data to generate house price indices for Tel Aviv (1998–2014) for over 100 census tracts. These price indices are used to define LHMs.  The number of LHMs varies inversely with the degree to which house prices in locations belonging to the same LHM, are expected to be correlated. It also varies directly with the order of contiguity of these locations. Results point to considerable spatial heterogeneity in house price movement. This belies the popular impression that the Tel Aviv housing market is relatively homogeneous, characterised by expensive housing and uniform house price movements.

2019
Is Planning Delay Really a Constraint in the Provision of Housing? Some Evidence from Israel
Rubin, Ziv, and Daniel Felsenstein. 2019. “Is Planning Delay Really a Constraint in the Provision of Housing? Some Evidence from Israel”. Papers in Regional Science 98 (5):2179-2200. Publisher's VersionAbstract

This paper revisits the claim that a causal link exists between the inflexibility of land‐use planning and low elasticity of housing supply. A theoretical model of factors impacting district‐level planning is presented alongside a model of the impact of planning delay on housing supply. The models are estimated for the Tel Aviv district using detailed data covering a 12‐year period. Results show significant impacts on planning delay due to plan, municipality and district planning commission characteristics. House prices exert a positive effect on planning speed and municipal funding acts as a supply constraint. While planning delay does not impact housing supply, delay uncertainty has a negative impact and acts as a constraint.

The Econometric Analysis of Non-Stationary Spatial Panel Data
Beenstock, Michael, and Daniel Felsenstein. 2019.The Econometric Analysis of Non-Stationary Spatial Panel Data. Springer International Publishing. Publisher's VersionAbstract

This monograph deals with spatially dependent nonstationary time series in a way accessible to both time series econometricians wanting to understand spatial econometics, and spatial econometricians lacking a grounding in time series analysis. After charting key concepts in both time series and spatial econometrics, the book discusses how the spatial connectivity matrix can be estimated using spatial panel data instead of assuming it to be exogenously fixed. This is followed by a discussion of spatial nonstationarity in spatial cross-section data, and a full exposition of non-stationarity in both single and multi-equation contexts, including the estimation and simulation of spatial vector autoregression (VAR) models and spatial error correction (ECM)  models. 
The book reviews the literature on panel unit root tests and panel cointegration tests for spatially independent data, and for data that are strongly spatially dependent. It provides for the first time critical values for panel unit root tests and panel cointegration tests when the spatial panel data are weakly or spatially dependent. 
The volume concludes with a discussion of incorporating strong and weak spatial dependence in non-stationary panel data models. All discussions are accompanied by empirical  testing based on a spatial panel data of house prices in Israel.

Emerging Urban Dynamics and Labor Market Change: An Agent-Based Simulation of Recovery from a Disaster
Grinberger, A. Y., and D. Felsenstein. 2019.“Emerging Urban Dynamics and Labor Market Change: An Agent-Based Simulation of Recovery from a Disaster”. in Resilience and Urban Disasters. Edward Elgar. Publisher's Version
2018
Dynamic Integrated Model for Disaster Management and Socio-Economic Analysis (DIM2SEA)
MAS, Erick, et al. 2018. “Dynamic Integrated Model for Disaster Management and Socio-Economic Analysis (DIM2SEA)”. Journal of Disaster Research 13 (7):1257-1271. Publisher's Version jdr-13-7-12.pdf
Introduction to SI: Modeling urban resilience to disasters
D., Felsenstein, and Mas E. 2018. “Introduction to SI: Modeling urban resilience to disasters”. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction 31:602-603. Publisher's Version
Using Big (Synthetic) Data for Identifying Local Housing Market Attributes
Grinberger, A. Y., and D. Felsenstein. 2018.“Using Big (Synthetic) Data for Identifying Local Housing Market Attributes”. Pp. 109-120 in Big Data for Regional Science. Routledge. Publisher's Version
Household insurance expenditure as an indicator of urban resilience
D, Felsenstein, Vernik M, and Israeli Y. 2018. “Household insurance expenditure as an indicator of urban resilience”. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction 31:102-111. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Demand for household insurance is intuitively perceived as contributing to household and community resilience. However the causality in this relationship is not clear. This paper examines household insurance expenditure and the generation of urban resilience as jointly determined. Potential endogeneity is purged by estimating this relationship as a system and using an instrumental variable approach. Empirical analysis based on aggregated Israeli household expenditure data is used. Results show that instrumenting makes a difference, that a distinction needs to be drawn between personal resilience and environmental resilience and that insurance coverage has an independent effect on resilience different to that of classic social (personal) and economic (property and place-based) characteristics. The policy context of the findings are discussed.

Spatial Econometric Analysis of Spatial General Equilibrium
M, Beenstock, Felsenstein D., and Xieer D. 2018. “Spatial Econometric Analysis of Spatial General Equilibrium”. Spatial Economic Analysis. Publisher's VersionAbstract

A structural spatial econometric model for nine regions of Israel is estimated using non-stationary spatial panel data during 1987–2015. The model focuses on the relation between regional markets in labour, housing and capital when there is imperfect internal migration between regions, when capital is imperfectly mobile between regions, and when building contractors operate across regions. Since the regional panel data are non-stationary, the econometric methodology is based on spatial panel cointegration. The estimated model is used to simulate the temporal and spatial propagation of regional shocks induced, for example, by regional policy (land for housing, regional investment grants). Impulse responses are temporally and spatially state dependent. They are also highly persistent because of longevity in housing and capital.

A Spatially Accurate Method for Evaluating Distributional Effects of Ecosystem Services
A., Fleischer, Felsenstein D., and Lichter M. 2018. “A Spatially Accurate Method for Evaluating Distributional Effects of Ecosystem Services”. Ecological Economics 145:451-460. Publisher's VersionAbstract

The value of most ecosystem services invariably slips through national accounts. Even when these values are estimated, they are allocated without any particular spatial referencing. Little is known about the spatial and distributional effects arising from changes in ecosystem service provision. This paper estimates spatial equity in ecosystem services provision using a dedicated data disaggregation algorithm that allocates ‘synthetic’ socio-economic attributes to households and with accurate geo-referencing. A GIS-based automated procedure is operationalized for three different ecosystems in Israel. A nonlinear function relates household location to each ecosystem: beaches, urban parks and national parks. Benefit measures are derived by modeling household consumer surplus as a function of socio-economic attributes and distance from the ecosystem. These aggregate measures are spatially disaggregated to households. Results show that restraining access to beaches causes a greater reduction in welfare than restraining access to a park. Progressively, high income households lose relatively more in welfare terms than in low income households from such action. This outcome is reversed when distributional outcomes are measured in terms of housing price classes. Policy implications of these findings relate to implications for housing policies that attempt to use new development to generate social heterogeneity in locations proximate to ecosystem services.

2017
Dynamic Agent Based Simulation of an Urban Disaster using Synthetic Big Data
Grinberger, A. Y., M. Lichter, and D. Felsenstein. 2017.“Dynamic Agent Based Simulation of an Urban Disaster using Synthetic Big Data”. Pp. 349-382 in Seeing Cities Through Big Data. Springer. Publisher's Version
Does Foreign Direct Investment Polarize Regional Earnings? Some Evidence from Israel
M., Beenstock, Felsenstein D., and Rubin Z. 2017. “Does Foreign Direct Investment Polarize Regional Earnings? Some Evidence from Israel”. Letters in Spatial and Resource Sciences 10 (3):385-409. Publisher's VersionAbstract

This paper investigates the polarizing effect of FDI on regional earnings in host nations. A key hypothesis is that the link between FDI and regional inequality is mediated by regional capital–labor ratios. In the absence of regional FDI data, a method for estimating the effects of FDI on regional inequality is proposed in which national FDI is hypothesized to be a common factor for regional capital investment. Empirical analysis of regional panel data for Israel shows that regional capital stocks vary directly and heterogeneously with the stock of national FDI, and that regional earnings vary directly and homogeneously with regional capital–labor ratios. These two relationships are used to calculate the contribution of FDI to regional earnings inequality over time. We find a substantial polarizing effect. Between 1988 and 2010 the variance of log regional earnings increased from about 0.011 to 0.025. More than half of this increase may be attributed to the polarizing effects of FDI. Policy implications of these findings are discussed.

Assessing Land Use Plan Implementation:Bridging the Performance-Conformance Divide
E., Feitelson, Felsenstein D., Razin E., and Stern E. 2017. “Assessing Land Use Plan Implementation:Bridging the Performance-Conformance Divide”. Land Use Policy 61:251-264. Publisher's VersionAbstract

The assessment of land use plan implementation is a contentious issue. The debate centers on whether the crucial evaluation element is conformance of development to plan directives or alternatively, plan performance, i.e. the degree to which the plan is actually used. An analytic framework combining both conformance and performance in the evaluation of (regional) land use plans is applied to the case of the Central District Plan in Israel. Qualitative and quantitative simulation methods are exploited. Qualitative analysis reveals that both performance and conformance are greater than indicated by non-contextualized, numeric evaluations. Additionally, high conformance does not necessarily imply good plan performance. Quantitative simulation suggests that plan performance with respect to land values and densities is initially pronounced as expectations for development are subdued but subsequently tends to wane merging with the counterfactual trend. Findings imply that plan assessment needs to consider the transaction costs of land use re-designation and actors’ perceptions of the probability that plan amendments will be approved. These perceptions differ across actors as a function of the political influence that they wield.

Supply-Side Constraints in the Israeli Housing Market: The Impact of State-Owned Land
Z., Rubin, and Felsenstein D. 2017. “Supply-Side Constraints in the Israeli Housing Market: The Impact of State-Owned Land”. Land Use Policy 65:266-276. Publisher's VersionAbstract

House prices in Israel have risen since 2008 by as much as 98%. Much of this increase is attributed to low levels of housing supply and housing supply elasticities. In Israel land is frequently owned by the state. This results in heavy government involvement in the housing market through the control of land supply via land tenders. This paper estimates the impact of state owned land on the Israeli housing market focusing on these unusual conditions of land supply. A model for the creation of new housing units is proposed. This incorporates land tenders, enabling the estimation of housing supply dynamics with an accurate measure of public land supply. The model is tested using regional panel data which facilitates the dynamic estimation of national and local supply elasticities and regional spillovers. The paper uses novel data sources resulting in a panel of 45 spatial units over a span of 11 years (2002–2012). Due to the nonstationary nature of the data, spatial panel cointegration methods are used. The empirical results yield estimates of housing supply price elasticities and elasticities with respect to land supply. Results show that housing supply is positively impacted by governmental decisions but the impact is low. Supply elasticity with regard to government land tenders stands at around 0.05 over the short run and 0.08 over the long run. Government policy of offering land in low demand areas and fixing minimum-price tendering does not seem to affect housing supply. Policy implications point to the need for more sensitive management of the delicate balance between public and private source of land in order to mitigate the excesses of demand shocks.

A Tale of Two Earthquakes: Dynamic Agent-Based Simulation of Urban Resilience
Grinberger, AY, and D Felsenstein. 2017.“A Tale of Two Earthquakes: Dynamic Agent-Based Simulation of Urban Resilience”. Pp. 134-154 in Lombard G.,Stern E. and Clarke G. (eds). Applied Spatial Modeling and Planning,. Taylor and Francis. Publisher's Version

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