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Avner Ben-Ner studies how organizations are designed and how they perform in relationship to ownership type, workforce composition, technology and other variables. He also investigates individual and group behavior relative to social preferences and cognition. His work spans theory and empirics, using a variety of methods and data sources.
Current resarch projects include an investigation of the effects of new technologies, especially additive manufacturing (3D printing) on work, skills and the supply chain, using job postings data, experimental study of different aspects of principal-agent relationshups, and the effect of nonprofit organizations (especially through their fundraising calls) on public attitudes towards members of different groups and social polarization.
Avner is a Professor in the Center for Human Resources and Labor Studies (formerly the Industrial Relations Center) in the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. He has served as Director of the Center, Ph.D. coordinator and academic director of the MA program. He is also affiliated with the Law School, the Center for the Study of Political Psychology and the Graduate Faculty in Applied Economics, at the University of Minnesota. He has been a regular or visiting professor at Yale University, University of California at Davis, University of Haifa, Stony Brook University (where he received his Ph.D. in economics), Tel-Aviv University and Central European University (Budapest). He has also taught short courses in Italy, China, S. Korea, India, Poland and France. He is also an Affiliated Professor at the Law School, Affiliated Professor, Center for the Study of Political Psychology, and Member, Graduate Faculty in Applied Economics at the University of Minnesota, and is Senior Fellow, Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations Institute for the Study of Employee Ownership and Profit Sharing.
He has served on the University of Minnesota Faculty Consultative Committee (2011-14) and the Carlson School of Management Faculty Consultative Committee (Chair, 2017-18). He was President of the Association for Comparative Economic Studies (2006-7) and Program Chair and Chair of the Public and Nonprofit Division of the Academy of Management (2010-13), and is co-editor of Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics (2016-).
Avner has published in the American Economic Review, Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Boston Law Review, Economica, California Management Review, Industrial Relations, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Journal of Comparative Economics, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Journal of Economic Psychology, Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Nonprofit Management and Leadership, Personality and Individual Differences, PLOS ONE, Yale Law Journal and other journals. He coedited with Helmut Anheier The Study of the Nonprofit Enterprise: Theories and Approaches (Kluwer, 2003), with Louis PuttermanEconomics, Values, and Organization (Cambridge, 1998/2001/2005), and with Benedetto Gui The Nonprofit Sector in the Mixed Economy(Michigan, 1993, 2016) and coauthored with John Michael Montias and Egon Neuberger Comparative Economics (Harwood, 1994). Four of his articles were reprinted in Edward Elgar International Library of Critical Writings in Economics in 1996, 2004, 2013 and 2017.
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Research with direct practical implications