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James Reade

Professor James Reade
  • Professor of Economics 
  • Research Division Leader (RDL)

Postgraduate supervision

I am interested in supervising research in applied economic areas, in particular applications in the area of sport. As sports are very well measured, and the incentives well understood, they can be ideal for the investigation of economic theories. I have published research investigating a range of economic phenomena using sports data; for example, discrimination and market efficiency. Many aspects of labour market functioning (workplace productivity, the impact of immigration and changes in regulatory oversight) and managerial decisions can, and have been investigated.

Sport also enables classic economic issues to be analysed within the context of sport, for example the demand for attendance at sport, and strategic decisions made on the field. Data on sport has been extensively collected for decades, even centuries, enabling economic history analyses over long periods of time, and studies of important periods of change in sports.


I studied Economics at Durham as an undergraduate, switching from a maths degree that I couldn't do at the end of my first year. After that, I went to Oxford to do an MPhil and DPhil (PhD), supervised by Sir Prof David F Hendry. I was then a Postdoctoral Fellow at Oxford before moving to the University of Birmingham to become a Lecturer in 2009, and in 2013 I moved to the University of Reading.

My DPhil was predominantly in macroeconometric modelling forecasting, but gradually over time I've moved towards doing research using sport. That's because sport is a big part of the economy (it's not just leisure), but also because sport is so well measured that we can analyse the impact of decisions about scarce inputs on outputs and outcomes - the basis of all economic analysis. I've looked at what sport attendance patterns can tell us about individual preferences, and also what impact it can have on broader outcomes such as public health.

I've looked at forecasts of football matches made by experts, by everyday people, and by bookmakers, to try and understand what the biases in these forecasts can tell us about how we process information. I've looked at other outcomes on the field in sporting events to try and help us understand how people make decisions when faced with time pressure, and also social pressure - the influence of groups of people.

Academic qualifications

  • BA Economics, Durham, Mphil and Dphil Economics, Oxford
  • Applied Econometrics, economics of sport, macroeconomics.


Selected publications

  • Prediction Markets, Social Media and Information Efficiency', 2016, with Leighton Vaughan Williams, Kyklos, Vol. 69, Issue 3, pp. 518-556.
  • 'Whatever It Takes: The Effects of Rivalry on Unethical Behaviour,' with Edoardo Gallo (Oxford) and
  • Gavin Kilduff (NYU). The Academy of Management Journal, Volume 59, October 2016, pp. 1508-1534.
  • 'Forecasting Elections', 2016, with Leighton Vaughan Williams, Journal of Forecasting, Vol. 35, Issue 4, pp. 308-328.
  • 'General-to-Specific (GETS) Modelling And Indicator Saturation With The R Package Gets', with Felix Pretis and Genaro Sucarrat, 2016, University of Oxford Department of Economics Discussion Paper Series, No. 794.
  • 'Forecasting and Forecast Narratives: The Bank of England Inflation Reports', with Michael P. Clements, 2016, ICMA Centre Discussion Paper, University of Reading.


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