James W. Hughes

Thomas Sowell Professor Emeritus of Economics





Hughes received his Ph.D. in economics from The University of Michigan in 1987. Prior to coming to Bates, Hughes was on the faculty at Amherst College and The State University of New York at Albany.

Hughes’ principal areas of research include labor, intellectual property and law and economics. He has conducted research on sex discrimination in various labor markets in the U.S. and China. His research on the effects of fee-shifting on litigation outcomes culminated in an invitation to contribute an entry on the subject to The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics and the Law. He is currently engaged in research on human trafficking in southeast Asia and investigating the disappearance of African American jockeys from American thoroughbred racing at the end of the 19th century.

Hughes teaching areas are in statistics, microeconomic theory, labor economics, intellectual property and a course on the economics of gender.

Ph.D. in Economics, The University of Michigan

Selected publications:
“Finding the Lost Jockeys,” (with Debra Barbezat), Historical Methods:, A Journal of Quantitative and Interdisciplinary History, v. 47, n. 1, 2014, pp. 19-30.

“A Comparison and Decomposition of Reform-Era Labor Force Participation Rates of China’s Ethnic Minorities and Han Majority,” (with M. Maurer-Fazio and Dandan Zhang), International Journal of Manpower, v. 31 n. 2, 2010, pp. 138-162 [also cited as IZA Discussion Paper #4148, April 2009].

“The Effect of Market Liberalization on the Relative Earnings of Chinese Women,” (with M. Maurer-Fazio) Journal of Comparative Economics, v 30, n 4, pp. 709-731, December, 2002 [also cited as William Davidson Working Paper No. 460].

“The English Rule for Allocating Legal Costs: Evidence Confronts Theory,” (with E. Snyder), Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Fall, 1990, pp. 345-380.

“Sex Discrimination in Labor Markets: The Role of Statistical Evidence– Comment,” (with Debra Barbezat), The American Economic Review, March, 1990, pp. 277-286.