Bio


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
  • Public Policy

Projects


  • 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.

    Location

    Puebla, Mexico

    Collaborators

    • 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.

    Location

    Singapore

    For More Information:

2020-21 Courses


Stanford Advisees


All Publications


  • Market Design in an Intermittent Renewable Future Cost Recovery With Zero-Marginal-Cost Resources IEEE POWER & ENERGY MAGAZINE Wolak, F. A. 2021; 19 (1): 29–40
  • (Machine) learning from the COVID-19 lockdown about electricity market performance with a large share of renewables JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL ECONOMICS AND MANAGEMENT Graf, C., Quaglia, F., Wolak, F. A. 2021; 105
  • Increasing the energy cognizance of electricity consumers in Mexico: Results from a field experiment JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL ECONOMICS AND MANAGEMENT Stojanovski, O., Leslie, G. W., Wolak, F. A., Huerta Wong, J., Thurber, M. C. 2020; 102
  • Optimal offer-bid strategy of an energy storage portfolio: A linear quasi-relaxation approach APPLIED ENERGY Tomasson, E., Hesamzadeh, M., Wolak, F. A. 2020; 260
  • Expecting the Unexpected: Emissions Uncertainty and Environmental Market Design AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW Borenstein, S., Bushnell, J., Wolak, F. A., Zaragoza-Watkins, M. 2019; 109 (11): 3953–77
  • The benefits of purely financial participants for wholesale and retail market performance: lessons for long-term resource adequacy mechanism design OXFORD REVIEW OF ECONOMIC POLICY Wolak, F. A. 2019; 35 (2): 260–90
  • The Role of Efficient Pricing in Enabling a Low-Carbon Electricity Sector ECONOMICS OF ENERGY & ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY Wolak, F. A. 2019; 8 (2): 49–72
  • Comparing auction designs where suppliers have uncertain costs and uncertain pivotal status RAND JOURNAL OF ECONOMICS Holmberg, P., Wolak, F. A. 2018; 49 (4): 995–1027
  • Rural energy access through solar home systems: Use patterns and opportunities for improvement ENERGY FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT Stojanovski, O., Thurber, M., Wolak, F. 2017; 37: 33-50
  • Freight Rail Costing and Regulation: The Uniform Rail Costing System REVIEW OF INDUSTRIAL ORGANIZATION Wilson, W. W., Wolak, F. A. 2016; 49 (2): 229-261
  • Measuring the competitiveness benefits of a transmission investment policy: The case of the Alberta electricity market ENERGY POLICY Wolak, F. A. 2015; 85: 426-444
  • Environmental economics. An economic perspective on the EPA's Clean Power Plan. Science Fowlie, M., Goulder, L., Kotchen, M., Borenstein, S., Bushnell, J., Davis, L., Greenstone, M., Kolstad, C., Knittel, C., Stavins, R., Wara, M., Wolak, F., Wolfram, C. 2014; 346 (6211): 815-816

    View details for DOI 10.1126/science.1261349

    View details for PubMedID 25395524

  • Do Residential Customers Respond to Hourly Prices? Evidence from a Dynamic Pricing Experiment AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW Wolak, F. A. 2011; 101 (3): 83-87
  • Measuring the Benefits of Greater Spatial Granularity in Short-Term Pricing in Wholesale Electricity Markets AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW Wolak, F. A. 2011; 101 (3): 247-252
  • Using restructured electricity supply industries to understand oligopoly industry outcomes UTILITIES POLICY Wolak, F. A. 2010; 18 (4): 227-246
  • Upstream vs. downstream CO2 trading: A comparison for the electricity context ENERGY POLICY Hobbs, B. F., Bushnell, J., Wolak, F. A. 2010; 38 (7): 3632-3643
  • 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
  • Relative prices and electronic substitution: Changes in household-level demand for postal delivery services from 1986 to 2004 JOURNAL OF ECONOMETRICS Hong, S., Wolak, F. A. 2008; 145 (1-2): 226-242
  • Reforming the Indian Electricity Supply Industry Sustaining India's Growth Miracle Wolak , F. Columbia Business School. 2008
  • Quantifying the supply-side benefits from forward contracting in wholesale electricity markets 15th European Conference of the Econometrics Community Wolak, F. A. WILEY-BLACKWELL. 2007: 1179–1209

    View details for DOI 10.1002/jae.989

    View details for Web of Science ID 000252453700003

  • Benefit-cost analysis of large-scale transmission for renewable generation: Principles & California Case Study IEEE-Power-Engineering-Society General Meeting Casey, K. E., Hobbs, B. F., Shirmohammadi, D., Wolak, F. A. IEEE. 2007: 2929–2931
  • The California ISO transmission economic assessment methodology (TEAM): Principles and application to path 26 2006 POWER ENGINEERING SOCIETY GENERAL MEETING, VOLS 1-9 Awad, M., Broad, S., Casey, K. E., Chen, J., Geevarghese, A. S., Miller, J. C., Perez, A. J., Hobbs, B. F., Wolak, F. A. 2006: 2717-?
  • Measuring and managing unilateral market power in electricity IEEE-Power-Engineering-Society General Meeting Wolak, F. A. IEEE. 2005: 2028–2028
  • Measuring unilateral market power in wholesale electricity markets: The California market, 1998-2000 115th Annual Meeting of the American-Economic-Association Wolak, F. A. AMER ECONOMIC ASSOC. 2003: 425–30
  • Measuring market inefficiencies in California's restructured wholesale electricity market AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW Borenstein, S., BUSHNELL, J. B., WOLAK, F. A. 2002; 92 (5): 1376-1405
  • Market design and price behavior in restructured electricity markets - An international comparison 8th National Bureau of Economic Research East Asia Seminar on Economics WOLAK, F. A. UNIV CHICAGO PRESS. 2000: 79–137
  • Changes in the household-level demand for postal delivery services from 1986 to 1994 4th Bi-Annual Conference on Postal and Delivery Services WOLAK, F. A. KLUWER ACADEMIC PUBLISHERS. 1997: 162–191
  • Electronic substitution in the household-level demand for postal delivery services 24th Annual Telecommunications Policy Research Conference WOLAK, F. A. LAWRENCE ERLBAUM ASSOC PUBL. 1997: 155–179
  • The welfare impacts of competitive telecommunications supply: A household-level analysis BROOKINGS PAPERS ON ECONOMIC ACTIVITY WOLAK, F. A. 1996: 269-350
  • Why do firms simultaneously purchase in spot and contract markets? Evidence from the United States steam coal market Conference on Agricultural Markets - Mechanisms, Failures and Regulations WOLAK, F. A. ELSEVIER SCIENCE PUBL B V. 1996: 109–168
  • MEASURING INDUSTRY-SPECIFIC PROTECTION - ANTIDUMPING IN THE UNITED-STATES BROOKINGS PAPERS ON ECONOMIC ACTIVITY Staiger, R. W., WOLAK, F. A. 1994: 51-118
  • A PROCEDURE FOR ESTIMATING THE UNCONDITIONAL CUMULATIVE INCIDENCE CURVE AND ITS VARIABILITY FOR THE HUMAN-IMMUNODEFICIENCY-VIRUS APPLIED STATISTICS-JOURNAL OF THE ROYAL STATISTICAL SOCIETY SERIES C Hay, J. W., WOLAK, F. A. 1994; 43 (4): 599-624
  • COLLUSIVE PRICING WITH CAPACITY CONSTRAINTS IN THE PRESENCE OF DEMAND UNCERTAINTY RAND JOURNAL OF ECONOMICS Staiger, R. W., WOLAK, F. A. 1992; 23 (2): 203-220
  • THE EFFECT OF DOMESTIC ANTIDUMPING LAW IN THE PRESENCE OF FOREIGN MONOPOLY JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL ECONOMICS Staiger, R. W., WOLAK, F. A. 1992; 32 (3-4): 265-287
  • THE LOCAL NATURE OF HYPOTHESIS TESTS INVOLVING INEQUALITY CONSTRAINTS IN NONLINEAR MODELS ECONOMETRICA WOLAK, F. A. 1991; 59 (4): 981-995
  • A MODEL OF HOMOGENEOUS INPUT DEMAND UNDER PRICE UNCERTAINTY AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW WOLAK, F. A., Kolstad, C. D. 1991; 81 (3): 514-538
  • TESTING INEQUALITY CONSTRAINTS IN LINEAR ECONOMETRIC-MODELS JOURNAL OF ECONOMETRICS WOLAK, F. A. 1989; 41 (2): 205-235
  • LOCAL AND GLOBAL TESTING OF LINEAR AND NONLINEAR INEQUALITY CONSTRAINTS IN NONLINEAR ECONOMETRIC-MODELS ECONOMETRIC THEORY WOLAK, F. A. 1989; 5 (1): 1-35
  • MEASURING RELATIVE MARKET POWER IN THE WESTERN UNITED-STATES COAL MARKET USING SHAPLEY VALUES RESOURCES AND ENERGY WOLAK, F. A., Kolstad, C. D. 1988; 10 (4): 293-314
  • DUALITY IN TESTING MULTIVARIATE HYPOTHESES BIOMETRIKA WOLAK, F. A. 1988; 75 (3): 611-615
  • AN EXACT TEST FOR MULTIPLE INEQUALITY AND EQUALITY CONSTRAINTS IN THE LINEAR-REGRESSION MODEL JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN STATISTICAL ASSOCIATION WOLAK, F. A. 1987; 82 (399): 782-793
  • CONJECTURAL VARIATION AND THE INDETERMINACY OF DUOPOLISTIC EQUILIBRIA CANADIAN JOURNAL OF ECONOMICS-REVUE CANADIENNE D ECONOMIQUE Kolstad, C. D., WOLAK, F. A. 1986; 19 (4): 656-677