Associate Professor - Economics; William Kahlert Endowed Professorship in Economics
St. Paul Main Campus > East Hall > EAST 306B
Stacie Bosley is an economist who focuses on microeconomics and behavioral economics in both her research and teaching. Bosley is presently studying the dynamics of pyramid schemes in the U.S. and around the world, examining social and economic factors that influence participation. She teaches courses in microeconomic theory, managerial economics, behavioral economics and quantitative analysis, conducts summer collaborative research with undergraduate students, and was awarded the university's Faculty Advisor of the Year award. The recipient of the 2013 Dean's leadership award for work on academic programs and assessment, Bosley has served as the university's Director of Assessment. Bosley holds a BBA in Finance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Ph.D. in Applied Economics from the University of Minnesota. Prior to her graduate education, she worked as a consultant for Accenture (then Andersen Consulting) coding and designing human resource and payroll systems for public sector clients.
Professor Bosley seeks to motivate economics and quantitative analysis through discussion of pressing problems in society and business.
"I want students to develop skills of inquiry and analysis. This is not to establish that they can answer any specific question, but to enable them to explore questions they personally find compelling in work and in life."
At the 2015 Midwest Economics Association Conference in Minneapolis, Bosley presented her paper entitled "Network Analysis of a Pyramid Scheme." Pyramid scheme participation is frequently elicited through interpersonal contact within social networks, but little is known about conditions that affect the spread of this type of financial fraud. This paper seeks to identify network characteristics that support or deter scheme contagion. A national dataset, resulting from a settlement between an alleged pyramid scheme and the Federal Trade Commission, provides a population of over half a million participants across the United States who joined a now-defunct multilevel marketing company (Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing) between 2001 and 2013. County-level analysis reveals the power of affinity groups, especially the presence of religious communities, in elevating scheme adoption. Participation is also elevated in locations with larger economic contractions and is strongly affected by regional culture. Education serves to create some degree of inoculation. Findings inform prevention and regulatory efforts.