Pamela Jakiela

Associate Professor of Economics
Williams College


Open Letter to the AEA

To protect the health and wellbeing of all members of the American Economic Association, a large group of professional economists encouraged the Executive Committee to relocate the 2023 and 2024 Annual Meetings, and to commit to holding future meetings in states where women’s rights to necessary pregnancy care are protected.

The original draft of our Open Letter to the American Economic Association is available here. We shared this letter together (with the first 933 signatures) with the AEA Executive Committee on June 27, 2022. The final version with 1,107 signatures is available here.

On July 1, 2022, the AEA indicated that initial interviews of job market candidates should take place online. We applaud this decision. Pregnant job market candidates will no longer need to worry about whether their ability to access necessary emergency care will be impacted by Louisiana’s strict ban on abortion. In light of this, we have stopped accepting signatures on our open letter.

Our statement on this outcome is here. We encourage the Executive Committee to shift to a fully hybrid conference so that presenters and discussants with health concerns can participate in the presentation sessions. We recognize the difficult tradeoffs inherent in the location selection process, but we hope that the AEA will incorporate the safety concerns of its diverse membership in the selection of future meeting locations.