Steven Raphael

Research Fellow

University of California, Berkeley

Steven Raphael is Professor of Public Policy at UC Berkeley. His research focuses on the economics of low-wage labor markets, housing, and the economics of crime and corrections. His most recent research focuses on the social consequences of the large increases in U.S. incarceration rates. He also works on the economics immigration, racial inequality, labor unions, social insurance policies, homelessness, and low-income housing. Raphael holds a Ph.D. in economics from UC Berkeley.

He joined IZA as a Research Fellow in March 2009.



IZA Discussion Paper No. 9812
published in: Journal of Economic Perspectives, 2016, 30 (2), 103 - 126

Crime rates in the United States have declined to historical lows since the early 1990s. Prison and jail incarceration rates as well as community correctional populations have increased greatly since the mid-1970s. Both of these developments have disproportionately impacted poor and minority communities. In this paper, we document these trends....

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9420
published in: Southern Economic Journal, 2015, 81 (4), 960–979

We examine the impact of state level legislation against the hiring of unauthorized immigrants on employment opportunities among competing low-skilled workers. Our focus is on the role of E-Verify mandates and specifically, we test for effects of the 2007 Legal Arizona Workers Act (LAWA) on employment outcomes of low-skilled native-born...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 7838
published in: The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 2016, 664 (1), 196-220

We evaluate the effect of perhaps the largest exogenous decline in a state's incarceration rate in U.S. history on local crime rates. We assess the effects of a recent reform in California that caused a sharp and permanent reduction in the state's incarceration rate. We exploit the large variation across...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5682
published in: Review of Economics and Statistics, 2014, 96(2), 258-269

We test for an effect of Arizona’s 2007 Legal Arizona Workers Act (LAWA) on the proportion of the state population characterized as foreign-born, as non-citizen, and as non-citizen Hispanic. We use the synthetic control method to select a group of states against which the population trends of Arizona can be...