Professor Keith Bender

Professor Keith Bender
Professor Keith Bender
Professor Keith Bender

SIRE Chair in Economics

Email Address
Telephone Number
+44 (0)1224 273411
Office Address
S49 Edward Wright Building
Old Aberdeen Campus
Dunbar Street
AB24 3QY

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Business School


I specialise in applied microeconomics, particularly interested in labour economics.  Early in my career I focused on the role of institutions and labour market outcomes, looking at differences between union and nonunion workers, public and private sector workers, and the subjective wellbeing of retirees and retirement behaviour.  More recently I have been looking at the interactions of health and labour economics, particularly the effect of different kinds of labour contracts on stress and the health of workers.  In addition, I have previously done research on issues around in the educational and skills mismatch in the labour market, examining its incidence, causes and effects, particularly among the very highly educated.

I am an Associate Editor of the British Journal of Industrial Relations and a Research Fellow of the IZA.

In addition to working at the Unversity of Aberdeen, I have held previous positions at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and the US Social Security Administration, as well as visiting positions at Louisiana State University, University of Potsdam, Giessen University and the National Institute for Labour Studies at Flinders University in Australia.


  • PhD Economics 
    1994 - Duke University 
  • MA Economics 
    1992 - Duke University 
  • BA Economics 
    1990 - Furman University 

Memberships and Affiliations

Internal Memberships

Director of Research - Business School

Member of the Centre for Labour Market Research (CeLMR), the Scottish Experimental Economics Laboratory (SEEL) and the Just Transition Lab (JTL).

External Memberships

Nonexecutive Board Member of the Keith and Strathisla Regional Partnership (InKeith). 


Research Overview

Labour Economics, Subjective Well-being, Health Economics, Economics of Ageing

Member of the Centre for Labour Market Research (CeLMR), the Scottish Experimental Economics Laboratory (SEEL) and the Just Transition Lab (JTL).

Research Areas

Research Specialisms

  • Applied Economics

Our research specialisms are based on the Higher Education Classification of Subjects (HECoS) which is HESA open data, published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence.

Current Research

My current research projects investigate:

  • Employment contracts and wellbeing
  • Labour market effects of energy transition
  • Educational mismatch
  • Labour supply elasticities near retirement
  • Union and nonunion forms of worker voice
  • Skills shortages from the firm's point of view
  • Labour market (earnings) discrimination

Past Research

Determinants of trade unionism

Public-private wage determination and differentials

Knowledge Exchange

Interview on Faculti, Performance-related Pay, Mental and Physiological Health found here:

Podcast:  Performance-related Pay:  The Good, The Bad, The Stressful found here:

School teaching resource on performance-related pay and stress:  How does the type of payment you receive impact your health?


I generally supervise PhD topics in various aspects of applied labour economics.

Funding and Grants



Teaching Responsibilities

For the 2023-24 first teaching session, I will be coordinating EC1006 (Economics of Business and Society) and the QB5027: Employment Relations in Qatar as well as helping with the teaching of BU501S: Employment Relations. In the second teaching session, I will be supervising undergraduate Economics Dissertations (EC4526) .


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  • Controlling for endogeneity in the health-socioeconomic status relationship of the near retired

    Bender, K. A., Theodossiou, I.
    Journal of Socio-Economics, vol. 38, no. 6, pp. 977-987
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Constrained by hours and restricted in wages: The quality of matches in the labor market

    Bender, K. A., Skatun, J. D.
    Economic Inquiry, vol. 47, no. 3, pp. 512-529
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Educational Mismatch among PhDs: Determinants and Consequences

    Bender, K. A., Heywood, J.
    Science and Engineering Careers in the United States: An analysis of markets and employment. Freeman, R., Goroff, D. (eds.). University of Chicago Press, pp. 229-255, 27 pages
    Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters
  • How are pension integration and pension benefits related?

    Bender, K. A.
    The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, vol. 49, no. 1, pp. 26-41
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Are there differences in the health-socio-economic status relationship over the life cycle?: Evidence from Germany

    Bender, K., Habermalz, S.
    Labour, vol. 22, no. 1, pp. 107-125
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Replacing income in retirement for the newly retired: A distributional analysis of gross and net replacement rates

    Bender, K.
    Journal of Income Distribution, vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 83-105
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Unemployment and Other Measures of Labor Market Inefficiency: A Comparison of UK and US Labor Markets 1931-1996

    Bender, K. A., Neumann, R. M., Skatun, J. D. F.
    Economic Inquiry, vol. 44, no. 4, pp. 629-643
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Job satisfaction of the highly educated: The role of gender, academic tenure, and earnings

    Bender, K. A., Heywood, J. S.
    Scottish Journal of Political Economy, vol. 53, no. 2, pp. 253-279
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Risk compensation for hospital workers: Evidence from relative wages of janitors

    Bender, K. A., Mridha, H. A., Peoples, J.
    Industrial & labor relations review, vol. 59, no. 2, pp. 226-242
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Job satisfaction and gender segregation

    Bender, K. A., Donohue, S. M., Heywood, J. S.
    Oxford Economic Papers, vol. 57, no. 3, pp. 479-496
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Examining equality between public- and private-sector wage distributions

    Bender, K. A.
    Economic Inquiry, vol. 41, no. 1, pp. 62-79
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Test statistics and critical values in selectivity models

    Hill, R. C., Adkins, L. C., Bender, K. A.
    Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Conference Proceedings
  • Money and Real Wages and Employment Levels: International Comparisons

    Bender, K. A., Theodossiou, I.
    Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, pp. 621-638
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Trade union membership, tenure and the level of job insecurity

    Bender, K. A., Sloane, P. J.
    Applied Economics, vol. 31, no. 1, pp. 123-135
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • The central government-private sector wage differential

    Bender, K. A.
    Journal of Economic Surveys, vol. 12, no. 2, pp. 177-220
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • The changing determinants of U.S. Unionism: An analysis using worker-level data

    Bender, K. A.
    Journal of Labor Research, vol. 18, no. 3, pp. 403-423
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Decentralization and pay reform in central government: A study of three countries

    Elliott, R. F., Bender, K. A.
    British Journal of Industrial Relations, vol. 35, no. 3, pp. 447-475
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
  • Specification issues in the modelling of union status determination

    Bender, K. A.
    Applied Economics Letters, vol. 4, no. 8, pp. 481-485
    Contributions to Journals: Articles
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Books and Reports

Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings

Contributions to Journals

Contributions to Specialist Publications

Non-textual Forms

Working Papers