Using Stochastic Processes for Causal Inference
SeriesEconometrics Seminars and Workshop Series
Speaker(s)Florian Gunsilius (MIT, United States)
LocationErasamus University, Polak Building, Room 2-14
Date and time
November 07, 2019
16:00 - 17:30
We provide a framework for identification, estimation, and testing in general causal models with endogeneity by rephrasing the instrumental variable model as dependent stochastic processes. This shift in perspective has analytical benefits and allows us to solve several open problems in the literature.
First, we provide a proof of Pearl's conjecture, showing that the validity of an instrument cannot be tested without structural assumptions when the treatment is continuous; using the stochastic process framework, we are furthermore able to show that already weak continuity- or monotonicity restrictions reestablish testability.
Second, we provide a tractable procedure for estimating sharp bounds on causal effects which is flexible enough to incorporate structural assumptions into the estimation process in a unified manner.
It is based on the stochastic process representation of instrumental variable models and constructs an infinite dimensional linear program on the paths of these processes, the solution to which provides the counterfactual bounds. Finally, we also point to further applications of this framework: dynamic causal effects and continuous analogues of the LATE concept.Florian Gunsilius is a Postdoctoral Associate in the Department of Economics at MIT. I will join the Department of Economics at the University of Michigan Opens external as an Assistant Professor in the Fall of 2020.