Each year, an article from each American Economic Journal is selected from nominated articles for the AEJ Best Paper Award. This year, an article co-authored by Barcelona GSE Affiliated Professor Ruben Durante (UPF and BGSE) was chosen to receive the AEJ: Applied Economics Best Paper Award.
In the paper, “Market-Based Lobbying: Evidence From Advertising Spending in Italy,” authors Stefano DellaVigna, Ruben Durante, Brian Knight, and Eliana La Ferrara study how firms in Italy changed their advertising spending when media mogul Silvio Berlusconi was in power. They estimate that Berlusconi’s private television network, Mediaset, saw a significant boost in advertising spending from firms between 1993-2009, especially from companies in more regulated sectors. (AEJ: Applied Economics, Vol. 8, No. 1, January 2016)
A non-technical summary of this paper is available on the AEA website: Do firms lobby politicians by patronizing their businesses?