Illinois State Assistant Professor Bibek Adhikari has won the Irving Fisher Award from Omicron Delta Epsilon, an international honors society for Economics.

Adhikari won the award for his job market paper that provides estimates of the efficiency gains of introducing a VAT (value added tax) in a worldwide sample of countries. Using a synthetic control method, Adhikari could model  a weighted average of countries without a VAT so that they closely resembled the economic structure and outcomes of a country with a VAT. He finds that the VAT has a positive and economically meaningful impact on economic efficiency, but only for high-income countries. The findings imply that the success of a VAT depends on whether a country can properly design and enforce a VAT, which in turn depends on the initial level of development of the country in question.