What could economists do with all that cell-phone data?
The Atlantic - 06/01/2015
While many Americans are aware of (and weary of) how the government is using cell-phone data to develop its counterterrorism intelligence, this data may be even more powerful for researchers (in the government and out) who are trying to understand the dynamics of the economy. A team of researchers recently did an experiment investigating just that: whether mobile phone data can be used to observe broad economic changes. They found that one metric that might hint at whether a person is employed or not is how much a person uses their cell-phone: People who lost their jobs tended to dramatically reduce how much they were using their phones, particularly near the location of the job they lost.