Frank A. Wolak is a Professor in the Department of Economics at Stanford University. His fields of specialization are Industrial Organization and Econometric Theory. His recent work studies methods for introducing competition into infrastructure industries -- telecommunications, electricity, water delivery and postal delivery services -- and on assessing the impacts of these competition policies on consumer and producer welfare. He is the Chairman of the Market Surveillance Committee of the California Independent System Operator for electricity supply industry in California. He is a visiting scholar at University of California Energy Institute and a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER).

Professor Wolak received his Ph.D. and M.S. from Harvard University and his B.A. from Rice University.

Program Affiliations

  • Center for Latin American Studies


  • Field Experiment on Effectiveness of Information Provision on Household Energy Consumption in Mexico, Stanford University (6/17/2015 - Present)

    Field experiment to assess the impact of providing household in Mexico with information about how electricity-consuming actions translate into additional costs on their bi-monthly electricity bill given that Mexican households face a highly nonlinear tariff where the marginal price for additional consumption can differ significantly from the average price paid for consumption.
    Experimental intervention involves an educational survey that alerts customers to where they are on the nonlinear price schedule, a survey of their appliance stock, and information on electricity consuming actions that have the greatest impact on the household's bi-monthly electricity bill.


    Puebla, Mexico


    • Mark Thurber, Social Science Science Research Associate, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Independent Labs, Institutes, and Centers (Dean of Research)
    • Ognen Stojanovski, Independent Labs, Institutes, and Centers (Dean of Research)
  • Field Experiment on the Effectiveness on In-Home Displays on Household Electricity Consumption in Singapore, Stanford University (7/1/2014 - Present)

    This experiment assess the impact of the installation of an in-home display that presents real-time information on the household's electricity consumption, their cumulative monthly bill, and current price of electricity on the household's consumption of electricity. This experiment randomly assigned households in a district of Singapore in-home displays and compared their consumption to a set of similar "control" households.



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2020-21 Courses

Stanford Advisees

  • Postdoctoral Faculty Sponsor
    Christoph Graf
  • Doctoral Dissertation Advisor (AC)
    Zeyu Wang
  • Postdoctoral Research Mentor
    Trevor Davis

All Publications

  • When It Comes to Demand Response, Is the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission its Own Worst Enemy? The Electricity Journal Bushnell, J., Hobbs, B. F., Wolak , F. 2009; 22 (8): 9-18
  • Reforming the Indian Electricity Supply Industry Sustaining India's Growth Miracle Wolak , F. Columbia Business School. 2008