Arizona-Mexico Economic Indicators Team

Vera Pavlakovich-Kochi, Ph.D.

Director Arizona-Mexico Economic Indicators
Senior Regional Scientist and Associate Geography Professor

Dr. Vera Pavlakovich-Kochi is Senior Regional Scientist in the Eller College’s Economic and Business Research Center and adjunct Associate Professor in the School of Geography and Development at The University of Arizona. She is a Fulbright scholar (Austria 1997).  Educated as a geographer, she holds B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Zagreb, Croatia, and a Ph.D. degree from Kent State University.  She joined The University of Arizona in 1986. 

Under Dr. Pavlakovich-Kochi's direction the Arizona-Mexico Economic Indicators launched in 2015 with sponsorship from the Arizona Mexico Commission, Arizona Commerce Authority, Arizona Department of Transportation, and the Arizona Office of Tourism. Her research interests include regional economic development with an emphasis on the U.S.-Mexico border. Articles on various aspects of the Arizona's economy and U.S.-Mexican border have been published in Arizona 's Economy, Arizona's Review, Journal of Borderlands Studies, Revista de El Colegio de Sonora, Estudios Sociales and Geografski glasnik.  She co-edited a book “Challenged Borderlands ” published by Ashgate (2004) as a result of international collaboration with scholars from Mexico and several European universities (Utrecht, Berne, Zagreb and Ljubljana). Other research interests include the impact assessment of various agents on local and regional economy such as the maquiladora sector, fresh produce industry, Mexican visitors, as well as the role of The University of Arizona and University Science and Research Park in the regional economy of Pima County and Arizona.

Prior to her current position, Dr. Pavlakovich-Kochi was Director of Regional Development in the Office of Economic Analysis and Policy, where she developed an original set of cross-border economic indicators for the Arizona-Sonora Region and served as the principal author of the annual Indicators report and the Report Card for the Arizona-Sonora Region

George W. Hammond, Ph.D.

Director Economic and Business Research Center
Research Professor

George W. Hammond is director of the Economic and Business Research Center in the Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona. Dr. Hammond brings 17 years of experience in state and local econometric forecasting and regional economic analysis to the Center and the Forecasting Project. He has extensive experience in the design and use of econometric models for forecasting and he has produced nearly 100 forecasts of state and local economies. Dr. Hammond has also completed over 50 regional economic studies on topics that include economic and workforce development, energy forecasting, and the impact of higher education on human capital accumulation. These forecasts and reports garnered significant grant support and had significant influence, reaching over one thousand business leaders, policymakers, and individuals each year through conferences, publications, and press contacts. Dr. Hammond is a frequent contributor to local and national news services. His analysis and commentary have been featured in such distinguished venues as the NBC Nightly News , the Wall Street Journal , USA Today , Bloomberg BusinessWeek , and the New York Times .

Dr. Hammond is also a research professor in the Center. His academic research focuses on the determinants of local economic growth in the U.S., the impact of state and local policies on economic growth, and the contribution of higher education to local workforce development. His research has appeared in the top journals in his field including the Journal of Regional Science , the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, the International Regional Science Review , the Annals of Regional Science , Papers in Regional Science , Regional Studies, Review of Regional Studies , and the Manchester School Review.

Alisha Kim, Ph.D.

Research Economist

Alisha A. Kim brings broad interdisciplinary experience to the Economic and Business Research Center at the University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management. She supports the Arizona-Mexico Economic Indicators project and the Making Action Possible (MAP) Dashboard project, both collaborative community outreach efforts.

Prior to joining the EBRC, Kim worked as a financial manager for a Department of Defense (NAFI), spending a considerable amount of time supporting U.S. military objectives in the Middle East. She also taught predictive modeling, research design, statistics and conflict studies at the University of Texas at Dallas, and micro- and macro-economics at University of Maryland University College. She is an AmeriCorps service alum, having taught financial literacy to the general public in the Oklahoma MoneyMatter$ program.

She holds a BS in finance and a MS in economics from Oklahoma State University, as well as a MS in GIS and PhD in public policy and political economy from the University of Texas at Dallas.


Maile L. Nadelhoffer

Senior Research Economist

Maile L. Nadelhoffer is a senior research economist in the Economic and Business Research Center (EBRC) at The University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management. Maile is long time member of the Center’s Forecasting Project team which produces quarterly economic forecasts for Arizona and the Tucson and Phoenix metropolitan areas. These forecasts are recognized as among the most accurate in the Western states. She is also editor of EBRC's award-winning quarterly newsletter Arizona's Economy .

Maile, along with colleagues George Hammond and Daniel Kinnear, collaborated with UA Mobile to produce the Arizona's Economy Mobile App in December of 2013, and the 2.0 version released in 2015. The App now has more than 1,000 users.

In the spring of 2012, Maile was the principal researcher for an “economic gardening” study in the Town of Sahuarita. This project is detailed in her report Locally-Based Entrepreneurs in Sahuarita: Building an Entrepreneurial Culture.   With Center faculty member Dr. Alberta Charney and researchers at Arizona State University, Maile  co-authored A Strategic Assessment of the Economic Benefits of Investments in Research in Arizona under a grant from Science Foundation Arizona.

As EBRC's webmaster, Maile coordinates the Center's mission to facilitate public access to the most current and relevant socio-economic data and analysis available for Arizona and its communities. Under her direction, the EBRC website has 3 times won the ”Award of Excellence” from the Association for University Economic and Business Research. In 2012, in recognition of a collaboration Maile developed with Boston-based software firm, Leading Market Technologies, EBR and UA received an award of software licenses for new technology valued at $600,000 allowing users to capture time series data from myriad public and private sources .

Maile holds a B.A. and M.S. in Mathematics and an M.A. in Economics, all from The University of Arizona.