1210 Park St.
Grinnell, IA 50112
United States

Hâle Utar

Associate Professor

Sidney Meyer Professor of International Economics

Offices, Departments, or Centers: Economics ,

Hâle Utar is an Associate Professor and Sidney Meyer Endowed Chair in International Economics, a research fellow at IZA, a member of CESifo, and an Associate Editor at the Review of International Economics. She completed her undergraduate degree at Boğaziçi University, Istanbul and obtained her PhD in economics from the Pennsylvania State University, USA. Before coming to Grinnell, she held professorships at the University of Colorado at Boulder and Bielefeld University, Germany. Her course offerings at Grinnell include international economics and a seminar course in international trade. Her fields of specialization are International Trade and Applied Micro.

Her research focuses on the microeconomic impacts of globalization and how macroeconomic environment, developments in international trade and technology affect the organization of firms, industries, and labor markets. Recent decades' increased globalization and international trade has led to significant and visible shifts in the competitive environment faced by businesses, and consequently in how the production of goods is organized across countries and markets. The implications from these shifts on local economies and individual lives have been a highly visible topic of debate, both in the broader public and in academia.

In a series of recent papers, Professor Utar provides a detailed exploration of how globalization provokes adaptation in advanced country manufacturing firms, oftentimes costly transition for workers to other sectors and occupations, and indeed transformations in society in the form of polarization and changes in family patterns. Currently, her research agenda centers on adjustment of global value chains in the new era of rising protectionism and automation.

Professor Utar’s work has appeared in top economic journals, including the Review of Economic Studies, the Review of Economics and Statistics, American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, International Economic Review, Journal of International Economics, and Journal of Development Economics.

Selected Publications

International Trade and Job Polarization: Evidence at the Worker Level, with W. Keller, Journal of International Economics, Vol. 145, 2023

Globalization, Gender and the Family, with W. Keller,  Review of Economic Studies,  Vol. 89, Issue 6, 2022

Workers beneath the Floodgates: Impact of Low-Wage Competition and Workers' Adjustment, the Review of Economics and Statistics, Vol. 100, No. 4, 2018

Characteristics of International Trade Intermediaries and Their Location in the Supply Chain, Globalization: Strategies and Effects, Editors; Christensen & Kowalczyk, 2017

Credit Rationing, Risk Aversion, and Industrial Evolution in Developing Countries, with E. Bond and J. Tybout, International Economic Review, Vol. 56, No. 3, 2015

When the Floodgates Open: Northern Firms Response to Removal of Trade Quotas on Chinese Goods, American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, Vol. 6. No. 4, 2014

International Competition and Industrial Evolution: Evidence from the Impact of Chinese Competition on Mexican Maquiladoras, with L. Torres Ruiz, Journal of Development Economics, Vol. 105, 2013


Recent Working Papers:

The US-China Trade War and the Relocation of the Global Value Chains to Mexico, with A. Zurita and L. Torres Ruiz, CESIfo WP # 10638, 2023.

Firms and Labor in Times of Violence: Evidence from the Mexican Drug War, IZA DP # 15160

Technology Hubs or Backwater? Lessons on Structural Change from Germany’s Coal Regions,  with Janssen, Keller, and Vallizadeh, 2019.


Policy Columns:

Biological Clocks, Import Competition, and the Gender Gap in Earnings,VOX EU, 5 March 2020

A Biological Explanation for the Gender Gap in Earnings: Import Competition Increases Female Fertility, VOX China, 15 April, 2020

The challenges to manufacturing workers in the wake of globalisation, the World Economic Forum , 7 Dec 2018

You are needed but not your skills: Challenges to manufacturing workers in the wake of globalisation, VOX EU , 6 Dec 2018

Globalization and Polarization in the wake of Brexit, VOX EU, 5 July 2016

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