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Title: LASIK and its Impact Across Eyewear Industries
Authors: Owens, Peter V.
Advisors: Bhatt, Swati
Department: Economics
Class Year: 2015
Abstract: Throughout the history of eyewear, technology has played an enormous role in the evolution and development of the eyewear industry. Historically, technology has supported the industry by enhancing its efficiency, size, and global presence through the introduction of new materials and machinery. With the help of technology, eyewear and contact lenses comfortably controlled the vision correction market in the late 20th century. Yet, this paper explores the ways in which technology can also impede on markets more generally, exemplified through the introduction of LASIK into the vision correction market in the 1990s. Through a regression analysis driven by company data, this paper represents the first attempt to illustrate how LASIK has hindered the eyewear and contact markets by serving as a substitute for vision correction. Generated from a series of OLS linear and fixed effects panel data regressions, the results in this study indicate that LASIK has negatively impacted the eyewear and contact markets with lagging and immediate effects respectively, while the eye-care industry has remained largely stable over recent years. Even though independent scholarly discussions are available on the eyewear, contact, and LASIK markets, there are no studies that examine in depth the relationships among these industries, indicating the potentially large implications that the findings in this paper could have on these markets as they continue to expand in the future.
Extent: 75 pages
Type of Material: Princeton University Senior Theses
Language: en_US
Appears in Collections:Economics, 1927-2016

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