I am a senior lecturer in economics at the University of Johannesburg, as of 1 August 2016.

From July 2014 to July 2016 I worked as an economist in the South African Parliamentary Budget Office and continued my intellectual/academic work in my own time. At the beginning of 2016 I was appointed as a Research Associate in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Johannesburg, and remained affiliated to the Southern African Labour and Development Research Unit (SALDRU). I was previously a lecturer and PhD candidate in the School of Economics at UCT and briefly a senior researcher at the Development Policy Research Unit. I received my PhD in Economics in 2014.

The primary theme of my personal/academic research concerns the scope and limitations of microeconometric methods, with a particular emphasis on the external validity of randomised trials, causal inference and public policy. Within this I have specific empirical interests in education and development.

In the area of my primary technical expertise, applied microeconometrics, I have also taken an interest in the estimation of intergenerational mobility – though my work in this area is irregular.

A second, separate research agenda, concerns foundational issues in microeconomics with a specific emphasis on characterisations of individual choice and empirical tests of the related assumptions or predictions.

In addition, I have draft papers on a number of topics in the philosophy of economics. The first of these deal with issues relating to causal inference, but I am now expanding the scope of this work to include analysis of economic and econometric methodology more broadly.

Finally, following from my work at the Parliamentary Budget Office, I have additional research interests relating to the role of independent fiscal institutions, fiscal forecasts, and various South African fiscal policy issues.


I can be contacted at: academic{at}seanmuller.co.za (which I check irregularly), or using my academic/professional contact details here.