Public-Private Interface News

Former Secretary of the Treasury Larry Summers in conversation with Prof. Janice Eberly

Lawrence Summers

Larry Summers delivers the Susan Bies Lecture on Economics and Public Policy

The former Secretary of the Treasury spoke with Kellogg’s Janice Eberly

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Illinois joins lawsuit as insurers brace for end of Obamacare subsidies

10/14/17 – Chicago Tribune
Article discusses the numerous threats made by the Trump administration to undermine Obamacare, raising many questions for consumers. According to Professor Craig Garthwaite, “In some states, it’s possible some gold-level exchange plans might actually be better deals than some silver-level plans because of how states asked insurers to handle price increases due to uncertainty over the cost sharing-reductions.”

Trump May Be About To Blow Up The NAFTA Talks

10/10/17 – Forbes
Article by Adjunct Professor Phil Levy takes a look at discussions about the North American Free Trade Agreement that President Trump is threatening to disband if negotiations take more than six-months to complete.

Trump says he’s likely to sign healthcare order this week

10/10/17 – Reuters
Article discusses President Donald Trump’s announcement that he will likely sign an order this week to allow Americans to buy stripped-down health insurance policies, which would further undermine Obamacare. Professor Craig Garthwaite shares his insight on the potential order: “It unwinds the ability of people with pre-existing conditions to get insurance under the ACA.” Also covered on

Can the U.S. Repair Its Health Care While Keeping Its Innovation Edge?

10/09/17 – New York Times
Article takes a look at the juxtaposition between the U.S.’s leading innovation in health care and the problems with our overall healthcare system. The relationship between healthcare innovation and profits in the States is highest in biopharmaceuticals and medical devices, according to Professor Craig Garthwaite. “In these sectors, firms are able to patent innovations, and we have a good sense of how additional research funds lead to new products.”

Why Adjustable-Rate Mortgages Aren’t as Risky as You Think

10/08/17 – Wall Street Journal
Article by Visiting Professor Benjamin Harris explains how, “in the U.S., there may be no more important financial product than the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage.” However, Harris questions whether the U.S.’s need for these mortgages is good, noting that adjustable-rate mortgages are not as risky as some may think.

Why some middle-class families could face a tax increase under the GOP plan

10/06/17 – Washington Post
Article takes a look at the new GOP tax plan and how it is “increasingly clear that it will probably be a tax hike for a sizable portion of the middle class.” Many Republican leaders are trying to fight this notion. However, Visiting Professor Ben Harris is quoted on why GOP leaders are incorrect if you look at the nuts and bolts of the plan: “You’re talking about people whose itemized deductions are worth a lot. They have to be in a higher tax bracket, have high amounts of itemized deductions.”

Trump Pushes NAFTA Talks Onto Treacherous New Timeline

10/01/17 – Forbes
Article by Adjunct Professor Phil Levy discusses how the North American Free Trade Agreement renegotiation talks between the United States, Mexico, and Canada are most likely not on track for the ambitious goal of concluding by the end of the year. It will be untimely for Mexico and the US to extend these talks into campaign season in 2018.

Here's the biggest missing piece in GOP tax plan

09/28/17 – CNBC
Op-ed by Benjamin Harris, a visiting associate professor in the Kellogg Public-Private Interface at Northwestern University and former chief economist to Vice President Biden.

How the London License Ban Could Help Uber’s New CEO

09/25/17 – Fortune
Article by Professor Harry Kraemer explores the Uber license ban in London, noting that this could be an unexpected gift for the new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. Instead of going to court over the ban, the CEO could accept the ban in return for an opportunity “to prove his seriousness about changing the company’s culture and business practices.”

When a Drug Coupon Helps You but Hurts Fellow Citizens

09/25/17 – New York Times
Article discusses how using coupons that cause consumers to switch away from a generic drug, with an overall lower cost, to a brand-name drug may be playing a role in raising drug spending and premiums for others. According to a study co-written by Research Assistant Professor Christopher Ody, “the coupons for drugs with generic competition are responsible for several billion dollars of additional drug spending per year.”

Which country has the best healthcare?

09/23/17 – CNN
Video clip features Professor Craig Garthwaite following up from an article published last week that asked experts in health care and economics to rate various national health care systems. Garthwaite gives explanations for the choices he and the other panelists made, as they awarded Switzerland with the best system.

Wintrust Business Lunch 9/21/17: A $100M Grant, Teddy Ruxpin Reboot, & Chicago Half Marathon

09/21/17 – WGN Radio
Radio segment features Professor Kara Palamountain discussing being a finalist for the MacArthur Foundation’s 100andChange program that grants $100 million to the winner, which will be announced in December. Palamountain works with N.E.S.T, which is an organization that helps to improve newborn survival in Africa.

GOP health care bill faces opposition from Jimmy Kimmel, Illinois Democrats

09/21/17 – WGN-TV
Article discusses the opposition to the repeal of Obamacare that is set to be vote on next week, highlighting certain aspects of the proposed bill, quoting Professor Amanda Starc on how the bill would redistribute money from some states to other states. “The idea being states can have the flexibility to decide what to do with the money, which will now be distributed in one funding stream.”

While Premiums Soar Under Obamacare, Costs of Employer-Based Plans Are Stable

09/19/17 – The New York Times
Article explains the sharp contrast between the fast rising price of health insurance premiums in many marketplaces and the remarkably stable cost over the past year of coverage for the large number of people who are insured through their jobs. About 151 million people are covered through their employer, quoting Professor Craig Garthwaite on “a remarkable stubborn stability” that characterizes the insurance environment for many companies.

Graham-Cassidy's cuts are confusing. Let’s make them simple.

09/19/17 – Vox
Article discusses why many Senate Republicans still have yet to decide on the Graham-Cassidy healthcare bill, noting that many are still “looking at the numbers” of the funding. Taking a look at DSH funding in particular, Professor Craig Garthwaite notes that the very existence of this provision is “admitting that this is gonna increase the number of people who are uninsured and those people are still gonna go to the hospital.”

The Best Health Care System in the World: Which One Would You Pick?

09/18/17 – The New York Times
Article takes a look at 8 health care systems from countries around the world, noting the varying approaches they have taken, all with the commonality of universal coverage. In order to chose the “best” health care system, the authors staged a small tournament that was judged by a panel made up of experts in the field, including Professor Craig Garthwaite.

Blaming Medicaid for the Opioid Crisis: How the Easy Answer Can Be Wrong

09/12/17 – New York Times
Article discusses the theory that Medicaid expansion is causing the opioid crisis and how this idea is gaining prominence amongst American politicians, quoting Professor Craig Garthwaite on the possibility of this being true.

Why your Economic Argument Against Immigration Is Probably Wrong

09/11/17 – Fortune
Article by Visiting Professor Ben Harris takes a look at the recent announcement of the likely end of the DACA program made by the Trump administration last week, particularly looking at the widespread and positive effect immigration has on the economy.

How Starbucks covers pricey in vitro fertilization for even its part-time employees

09/05/17 – CBS News
Article discusses how Starbucks is helping employees, even part-time baristas, by offering benefits to cover infertility, noting that one in eight couples in the United States has trouble getting pregnant. Professor Craig Garthwaite was quoted on the reasoning behind Starbuck’s decision to include these benefits: “They’re not doing this out of the goodness of their heart, this is part of a cohesive strategy to attract and retain talent.”

Why Obamacare repeal failed

07/31/17 – Vox
Article discusses that Obamacare could not move through the chamber because it faced opposition from Republicans as well. Professor Craig Garthwaite is quoted on a potential reason for why the act did not pass: “Passing an Obamacare replacement is difficult because the existing system is fundamentally a collection of moderately conservative policies.”