Dr. Yang received his Ph.D. in Quantitative Economics in 2009 from Jilin University. His dissertation, “Studies on National Debt and China’s Empirical Test,” applied numerous nonlinear econometric technologies. His current research focuses on Regional Economics and Applied Spatial Econometrics. “The RRI is internationally known for its expertise in these areas,” Yang explains. “It is the reason I wanted to continue my research here. I am particularly interested in the effect of economic agglomeration on economic convergence.” Dr. Yang boasts about Dr. Donald J. Lacomb’s spatial econometric class and Dr. Peter Schaeffer’s advanced regional economics class and his gratitude to Dr. Randall Jackson for inviting him to be a member of the NSF project team to research “The Technology, Energy, Economy and Environment Chain: Integrated Modeling for Technology Transition in Energy Rich Regions.”  During his stay, Dr. Yang has had ample opportunity to exchange ideas with Graduate Research Assistant, Zheng Tian, who was the 2012 winner of the M. Jarvin Emerson Student Paper Competition for his paper “Measuring Agglomeration Using the Standardized Location Quotient with a Bootstrap Method.” Dr. Yang says, “I am finding my stay at the RRI to be filled with valuable experiences.”