Just out:

Gensowski, M., Goertz, M., Schurer, S. (2020). Inequality in Personality over the Life Cycle. CEBI working paper series 20-16, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics. The Center for Economic Behavior and Inequality (CEBI). Under review [Submitted Version].


We have secured new funding through an NHMRC Targeted Call: "Against the odds: Understanding the factors influencing wellbeing among Indigenous youth in the Northern Territory" (2018-2023). We will be exploring Indigenous youth wellbeing using both linked administrative data and fieldwork, while training Indigenous research capacity. Joint with Lisa Cameron, Pat Dudgeon, Steve Guthridge, Guyonne Kalb, Olga Havnen, Tanja Hirvonen, and Peter Shaw.


Watch my recent interview with the Human Capital and Economic Opportunity (HCEO) Network, University of Chicago: VIDEO

Just published: University education and non-cognitive skill development in Oxford Economic Papers; covered by:

The Australian, the Daily Mail UK; PS Magazine; Campus Review; Times Higher Education; The University of Sydney News; Science Daily.


May 2017: Ranked in Top 5% of All Economist Authors in IDEAS/RePec (last 10 Year publications); Top 2% of Female Authors.

Finally printed: Does education strengthen the life skills ofadolescents. In: IZA World of Labor June 2017.

Finally printed: Origins of adulthood personality: The role of adverse childhood experiences. In: BE Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy March 2017 (with J Fletcher).

In the news: I was named as one out of 10 women likely to shape the future of the University of Sydney LINK.


NOV 2017 -- AWARDED: INAUGURAL SOAR FELLOWSHIP 2017 by the University of Sydney to support my research on interventions that boost life skill skills: LINK


FINALLY ACCEPTED FOR PUBLICATION - a research article in the making for almost nine years:

Schurer, S. (2016). Bouncing back from health shocks: Locus of control and labour supply. Forthcoming: Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization. Accepted 24 October 2016. [LINK]


I will be away from Sydney in the second quarter of 2016 - May-July 2016 talks in: Chicago, Essen, Geneva, Munich, Warsaw, Nuremberg.Back to Sydney 13 July 2016.



Just announced 9 November 2015: National Health and Medical Research Council Outcomes on Centre for Research Excellence: 2015-2020 EMPOWER: Health Systems, Adversity and Child Well Being, we will be exploring new ways how to model the long-term effectiveness of early childhood interventions. [LINK TO 2015 OUTCOMES]


I will be away from Sydney in the second quarter of 2015, because of a visiting scholar fellowship at University of Chicago - Centre for the Economics of Human Development - between April and June 2015.


We are currently fielding our first-year student survey. We have already 492 valid responses. Visit us at! Updates will be posted soon.


Hot off the press: AGAIN! Two more working papers on (1) Testing the validity of item non-response as proxy for cognitive skills PDFand (2) Do universities shape their students' personality?PDF.

Hot off the press: See here my latest two working papers on (1) the evolution of risk tolerance over the lifecourse and its heterogeneity by socioeconomic status PDFand (2) the medical care costs of mood disorders calculated for New Zealand PDF.


JUST ANNOUNCED (17 October 2014): National Health and Medical Research Council Outcomes on Partnership Projects: LINK - From 2014-2016 I will be working with the Menzies School of Health Research on the effectiveness of early childhood interventions on schooling and health outcomes for children born in the Northern Territory. This is a data linkage project that links various administrative data sets, including the penal system and child protection services, which will allows us to follow predominantly aboriginal children form 1994 onward.


I will be hosting a 1 1/2 day-workshop on the phenomenon of exceptional upward mobility, its empirical distribution, and its relationship with cognitive and non-cognitive skills. Here is a link to the official webpage. Please contact me if you like to attend.


IZA Workshop on cognitive and non-cognitive skills in Bertinoro, Italy October 2014


In the media: I was recently contacted by MX to comment on a study just published in Psychological Science titled "Entering Adulthood in a Recession Tempers Later Narcissism" by Emily Bianchi, and what her findings mean for Australian Youth. Here is a copy of the article: PDF and here is a link to the original article: LINK


I have just moved to the School of Economics at University of Sydney where I will be involved in the Charles Perkins Centre. This is an exciting opportunity to be involved in multidisciplinary research on health(y) behaviours to counter alarming trends in obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.


I have just been awarded an ARC Discovery Early Career Research Award (DECRA) which will fund my research full-time between 2014 and 2016. The title of the project is: ""Exceptional upward mobility against all odds: Non-cognitive skills and early-childhood disadvantage" (A$380K+). See here for an RMIT New Release

In my research project I will analyse the factors that lead children from disadvantaged backgrounds to exceed beyond expectations the social/economic achievements of their parents and grandparents. By social mobility I refer to individuals who were the first in their family to get a university degree or to become a successful entrepreneur. One part of the project will be dedicated towards quantifying the phenomenon of exceptional upward mobility across several countries. Another part of the project will investigate the common factors involved in upward mobility. I hypothesise that it is not only intelligence but certain belief systems and personality traits that shape the lifetime choices of these social pioneers. A crucial part of the project is to ask whether and when these belief systems and personality traits can be influenced. In this project I will use both "borrowed" data from several sources (e.g. nationally representative longitudinal surveys and various cohort studies) and primary data which I will collect from first-year students at RMIT University. The outcomes of this project will provide (a) an alternative measure of quantifying the degree of inequality in a society, and (b) ideas to shape new policies to boost opportunities for socially disadvantaged children.

The ARC DECRA stands for Discovery Early Career Research Award and finances 200 projects annually, four of which were given to economists Australia-wide. The award covers salary, travel costs, and a PhD student scholarship for three years, and therefore I can concentrate on research only with neither teaching nor administrative responsibilities. It is a great opportunity for an early career researcher.


I will be visiting the Centre for Economics Studies (CES) at University of Munich headed by Hans-Werner Sinn, Germany between 13 January and 8 February 2014. Many thanks to the Centre's Visitor's Program and Prof. Joachim Winter for inviting and hosting me.


The Royal Economic Society recently covered my article "Two economist's musings on the stability of locus of control" in their media briefings. Read about it here: RES link.

IZA Bonn covered my article on the persistence of depression in their Newsroom: Read more here: IZA Link.


One of my recent articles on the relationship between fatalistic beliefs and healthy habits has received quite a bit of media attention. Check out a video in which I talk about this research or read for instance the MedlinePlus or ISHN coverage or

Link to the full article: Cobb-Clark, D., Kassenboehmer, S., Schurer, S. (2012). Healthy habits: What explains the connection between diet, exercise, and locus of control? IZA Discussion Paper 6789. [This article is forthcoming at JEBO]


Since moving to Sydney, we have sold our Mimmi. But if you want to know what it feels like to sail over the Tasman check out this video: VIDEO