nep-eur New Economics Papers
on Microeconomic European Issues
Issue of 2016‒11‒20
twenty-six papers chosen by
Giuseppe Marotta
Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia

  1. R&D, Embodied Technological Change and Employment: Evidence from Italian Microdata By Barbieri, Laura; Piva, Mariacristina; Vivarelli, Marco
  2. Skill Transferability and Immigrant-Native Wage Gaps By Anna Rosso
  3. Taxation of Temporary Jobs: Good Intentions with Bad Outcomes? By Cahuc, Pierre; Charlot, Olivier; Malherbet, Franck; Benghalem, Helène; Limon, Emeline
  4. Subjective Completion Beliefs and the Demand for Post-Secondary Education By Kunz, Johannes S.; Staub, Kevin E.
  5. Immigrant Crime and Legal Status: Evidence from Repeated Amnesty Programs By Fasani, Francesco
  6. Measuring Knowledge with Patent Data: an Application to Low Carbon Energy Technologies By Clément Bonnet
  7. Natives and Migrants in Home Production: The Case of Germany By Emanuele Forlani; Elisabetta Lodigiani; Concetta Mendolicchio
  8. Etiopathology of Europe's Sick Man: Worker Flows in Germany, 1959-2016 By Hartung, Benjamin; Jung, Philip; Kuhn, Moritz
  9. Investing in Photovoltaics: Timing, Plant Sizing and Smart Grids Flexibility By Marina Bertolini; Chiara D’Alpaos; Michele Moretto
  10. Does postponing minimum retirement age improve healthy behaviours before retirement? Evidence from middle-aged Italian workers By Bertoni, Marco; Brunello, Giorgio; Mazzarella, Gianluca
  11. Wage adjustment and employment in Europe By Petra Marotzke; Robert Anderton; Ana Bairrao; Clémence Berson; Peter Tóth
  12. Reservation wages of first- and second-generation migrants By Constant, Amelie F.; Krause, Annabelle; Rinne, Ulf; Zimmermann, Klaus F.
  13. House prices, wealth effects and labour supply By Disney, Richard; Gathergood, John
  14. Does social interaction make bad policies even worse? Evidence from renewable energy subsidies By Inhoffen, Justus; Siemroth, Christoph; Zahn, Philipp
  15. Firm responses to employment subsidies: a regression discontinuity approach to the 2012 Spanish labour market reform By Gamberoni, Elisa; Gradeva, Katerina; Weber, Sebastian
  16. Intangible Assets and Participation in Global Value Chains: An Analysis on a Sample of European Countries By Cecilia Jona Lasinio; Stefano Manzocchi; Valentina Meliciani
  17. Screening through activation: differential effects of a youth activation programme By Hall, Caroline; Kotakorpi, Kaisa; Liljeberg, Linus; Pirttilä, Jukka
  18. Pension Incentives and Early Retirement By Barbara Engels; Johannes Geyer; Peter Haan
  19. What Drives People’s Opinions of Electricity Infrastructure? Empirical Evidence from Ireland By Valentin Bertsch; Hyland, Marie; Mahony, Michael
  20. Couples' Retirement under Individual Pension Design: A Regression Discontinuity Study for France By Stancanelli, Elena G. F.
  21. Vicious and virtuous cycles of female labour force participation in post-socialist Eastern Europe By Sonja Avlijas
  22. Do people gamble more in good times? Evidence from 27 European countries By Baumöhl, Eduard; Výrostová, Eva
  23. Women’s satisfaction during pregnancy and at delivery in Tuscany (Italy) By Gustavo De Santis; Valentina Tocchioni; Chiara Seghieri; Sabina Nuti
  24. “Breakthrough innovations: The impact of foreign acquisition of knowledge" By Damián Tojeiro-Rivero; Rosina Moreno; Erika Badillo
  25. New Business Formation and Incumbents' Perception of Competitive Pressure By Javier Changoluisa; Michael Fritsch
  26. France's Almost Public Private Schools By Bertola, Giuseppe

  1. By: Barbieri, Laura (Università Cattolica di Piacenza); Piva, Mariacristina (Università Cattolica di Piacenza); Vivarelli, Marco (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)
    Abstract: This paper explores the employment impact of innovation activity, taking into account both R&D expenditures and embodied technological change (ETC). We use a novel panel dataset covering 265 innovative Italian firms over the period 1998-2010. The main outcome from the proposed fixed effect estimations is a labor-friendly nature of total innovation expenditures; however, this positive effect is barely significant when the sole in-house R&D expenditures are considered and fades away when ETC is included as a proxy for innovation activities. Moreover, the positive employment impacts of innovation activities and R&D expenditures are totally due to firms operating in high-tech industries and large companies, while no job-creation due to technical change is detectable in traditional sectors and SMEs.
    Keywords: technology, innovation, R&D, embodied technological change, employment
    JEL: O31 O33
    Date: 2016–11
  2. By: Anna Rosso (University of Milan and Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano)
    Abstract: In this paper, I examine wage developments among Eastern European immigrants versus UK natives between 1998 and 2008 by measuring the extent to which intergroup wage differentials are explainable by these groups’ changing attributes or by differences in returns to these characteristics. Specifically, by applying unconditional quantile regression to immigrant-native wage gaps before and after the 2004 EU enlargement to Eastern countries, I show that a major part of the decrease in the average wages of Eastern European migrants in the UK results from a large decrease in wage levels at the top of the distribution. At all distribution points, major role is played by occupational downgrading, which increases over time. The results further suggest that the decreased wage levels at the top of the distribution stem mainly from low transferability of skills acquired in the source country.
    Keywords: migration, EU enlargement, labour market outcomes
    JEL: J31 J61 F22
    Date: 2016–10–21
  3. By: Cahuc, Pierre (Ecole Polytechnique, Paris); Charlot, Olivier (University of Cergy-Pontoise); Malherbet, Franck (CREST (ENSAE)); Benghalem, Helène (CREST); Limon, Emeline (University of Cergy-Pontoise)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the consequences of the taxation of temporary jobs recently introduced in several European countries to induce firms to create more open-ended contracts and to increase the duration of jobs. The estimation of a job search and matching model on French data shows that the taxation of temporary jobs does not reach its objectives: it reduces the mean duration of jobs and decreases job creation, employment and welfare of unemployed workers. We find that a reform introducing an open-ended contract without layout costs for separations occurring at short tenure would have opposite effects.
    Keywords: temporary jobs, employment protection legislation, taxation
    JEL: J63 J64 J68
    Date: 2016–11
  4. By: Kunz, Johannes S. (University of Zurich); Staub, Kevin E. (University of Melbourne)
    Abstract: The outcome of pursuing an upper or post-secondary education degree is uncertain. A student might not complete a chosen degree for a number of reasons, such as insufficient academic preparation or financial constraints. Thus, when considering whether to invest in post-secondary education, students must factor their probability of completing the degree into their decision. We study the role of this uncertainty in education choices using representative survey data from Germany. Students' subjective beliefs about the probability of completing a post-secondary education were elicited prior to them finishing their secondary education. We relate these subjective completion probabilities to students' subsequent education choices and outcomes. We find that these early beliefs are predictive of intentions to invest in education, actual subsequent investments in education, and degree completion. A structural choice model of sequential investment further reveals that the association between completion beliefs and investment choices is strongest for students with low academic skills and low preferences for post-secondary education.
    Keywords: subjective beliefs, subjective probabilities, completion uncertainty, post-secondary education, human capital investment
    JEL: I21 I26 J24
    Date: 2016–11
  5. By: Fasani, Francesco
    Abstract: Do general amnesty programs lead to reductions in the crime rate among immigrants? We answer this question by exploiting both cross-sectional and time variation in the number of immigrants legalized generated by the enactment of repeated amnesty programs between 1990 and 2005 in Italy. We address the potential endogeneity of the "legalization treatment'' by instrumenting the actual number of legalized immigrants with alternative predicted measures based on past amnesty applications patterns and residential choices of documented and undocumented immigrants. We find that, in the year following an amnesty, regions in which a higher share of immigrants obtained legal status experienced a greater decline in non-EU immigrant crime rates, relative to other regions. The effect is statistically significant but relatively small and not persistent. In further results, we fail to find any evidence of substitution in the criminal market from other population groups - namely, EU immigrants and Italian citizens - and we observe a small and not persistent reduction in total offenses.
    Keywords: illegal migration; legalization; migration policy
    JEL: F22 J61 K37
    Date: 2016–11
  6. By: Clément Bonnet
    Abstract: We estimate a latent factor model (LFM) to compute an index that measures the quality of an extensive data set of inventions related to Low Carbon Energy Technologies (LCETs) and patented by seven countries during 1980-2010. We use the quality index to compute the stock of knowledge accumulated in the fifteen analyzed LCETs. We investigate the composition of the stock of knowledge and find that important substitutions between technologies have taken place: technologies such as solar thermal and nuclear have been progressively replaced by wind power, solar photovoltaic and to a less extent by few other technologies. This substitution effect can be decomposed into quantity (the number of inventions) and quality (the quality of inventions). Investigating the latter, the quality of nuclear-related inventions has decreased whereas it has increased for solar photovoltaic (PV), wind power and energy storage inventions. Few newer technologies, i.e. hydrogen and sea energy, also show signs of an increase of their average quality of inventions over the last years of the data set. We go further and investigate the inventions distribution in terms of quality and conclude that the potential for signifcant inventions related to nuclear technology has decreased over time whereas higher levels of quality have been reached in newer technological areas. A cross-country comparison is conducted to assess the innovation performance of the seven countries covered by our study. We conclude that technology policies are less efficient when demand-pull and supply-push approaches are not coupled.
    Keywords: patent data, latent factor model, energy technologies, carbon.
    JEL: C30 C11 Q40 Q55
    Date: 2016
  7. By: Emanuele Forlani (University of Pavia and Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano); Elisabetta Lodigiani (University of Padova and Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano); Concetta Mendolicchio (Institute for Employment Research)
    Abstract: In this paper, we assess the impact of international migration, and the induced homecare service labour supply shock, on fertility decisions and labour supply of native females in Germany. Specifically, we consider individual data of native women from the German Socio-Economic Panel and we merge them with the data on the share of female immigrants and other regional labour market characteristics. We find that an increase of the share of female immigrants at the local level induces women to work longer hours and positively affects the probability to have a child. This effect strengthens for (medium) skilled women and, among them, for women younger than 35 years of age. The negative change in household work attitude confirms the behavioural validity of our results.
    Keywords: Female labour, time allocation, fertility, international migration
    JEL: J13 J22 J61
    Date: 2016–10–21
  8. By: Hartung, Benjamin (University of Bonn); Jung, Philip (TU Dortmund); Kuhn, Moritz (University of Bonn)
    Abstract: We provide new estimates on worker flow rates in and out of unemployment for Germany covering the last six decades. In the 1980s, Germany emerged as the sick man of Europe with a labor market characterized by persistently high unemployment rates. We attribute a substantial fraction of the rise in unemployment to a dramatic increase in inflow rates compared to the 1960s. Germany's recovery started in the mid-2000s after the Hartz reforms, when inflow rates persistently decreased. Comparing the German and U.S. labor market during recessions uncovers a striking similarity between the recent financial crisis in the U.S. and the German recession in the 1980s. We relate these findings to existing theories on labor market differences between the U.S. and Germany.
    Keywords: labor market dynamics, worker flows, Germany
    JEL: J63 J64
    Date: 2016–11
  9. By: Marina Bertolini (University of Padova and Centro Studi "Giorgio Levi Cases"); Chiara D’Alpaos (University of Padova and Centro Studi "Giorgio Levi Cases"); Michele Moretto (University of Padova, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM) and Centro Studi "Giorgio Levi Cases")
    Abstract: In Italy and in many EU countries, the last decade was characterized by a large development of distributed generation power plants. Their presence determined new critical issues for the design and management of the overall energy system and the electric grid due to the presence of discontinuous production sources. It is commonly agreed that contingent problems that affect local grids (e.g. inefficiency, congestion rents, power outages, etc.) may be solved by the implementation of a “smarter” electric grid. The main feature of smarts grid is the great increase in production and consumption flexibility. Smart grids give producers and consumers, the opportunity to be active in the market and strategically decide their optimal production/consumption scheme. The paper provides a theoretical framework to model the prosumer’s decision to invest in a photovoltaic power plant, assuming it is integrated in a smart grid. To capture the value of managerial flexibility, a real option approach is implemented. We calibrate and test the model by using data from the Italian energy market.
    Keywords: Smart Grids, Renewable Energy Sources, Real Options, Prosumer
    JEL: Q42 C61 D81
    Date: 2016–09
  10. By: Bertoni, Marco (university of padova); Brunello, Giorgio (university of padova); Mazzarella, Gianluca (university of padova)
    Abstract: By increasing the residual working horizon of employed individuals, pension reforms that raise minimum retirement age are likely to affect the returns to investments in healthpromoting behaviours before retirement, with consequences for individual health. Using the exogenous variation in minimum retirement age induced by a sequence of Italian pension reforms during the 1990s and 2000s, we show that Italian males aged 40 to 49 reacted to the longer time to retirement by raising regular exercise and by reducing smoking and regular alcohol consumption. Dietary habits were also affected, with positive consequences on obesity and self-reported satisfaction with health.
    Keywords: retirement, working horizon, healthy behaviours, pension reforms
    JEL: H55 I12 J26
    Date: 2016
  11. By: Petra Marotzke; Robert Anderton; Ana Bairrao; Clémence Berson; Peter Tóth
    Abstract: We explore the impact of wage adjustment on employment with a focus on the role of downward nominal wage rigidities. We use a harmonised survey dataset, which covers 25 European countries in the period 2010-2013. The main advantages of the data are firm-level information on the change in economic conditions and collective pay agreements. Our findings confirm the presence of wage rigidities in Europe: first, collective pay agreements reduce the probability of downward wage adjustment; second, the rise in the probability of downward base wage responses to a decrease in demand is significantly smaller than the rise in the probability of an upward wage response to an increase in demand. Estimation results point to a negative effect of downward wage rigidities on employment at the firm level.
    Keywords: Wage rigidity, Employment, Demand shocks
    Date: 2016
  12. By: Constant, Amelie F. (UNU-MERIT, and Princeton University); Krause, Annabelle (IZA Bonn); Rinne, Ulf (IZA Bonn); Zimmermann, Klaus F. (UNU-MERIT, and Princeton University)
    Abstract: We analyse the reservation wages of first- and second-generation migrants, based on rich survey data of the unemployed in Germany. Our results confirm the hypothesis that reservation wages increase over migrant generations and over time, suggesting that the mobility benefit of immigration may be limited in time.
    Keywords: Migration, Unemployment, Job Search, Reservation Wages
    JEL: J15 J61 J64
    Date: 2016–09–14
  13. By: Disney, Richard; Gathergood, John
    Abstract: We examine the impact of house prices on labour supply decisions using UK micro data. We combine household survey data with local level house price measures and controls for local labour demand. Our micro data also allows us to control for individual level income expectations. We find significant house price effects on labour supply, consistent with leisure being a normal good. Labour supply responses to house prices are concentrated among young married female owners and older owners. This finding suggests house prices affect the decisions of marginal workers in the economy. Our estimates imply house prices are economically important for the participation decisions for these workers.
    Keywords: Labour supply,Wealth effects,House prices
    JEL: D12 E21 J22
    Date: 2016
  14. By: Inhoffen, Justus; Siemroth, Christoph; Zahn, Philipp
    Abstract: Minimum prices above the market level can lead to ineffcient production and oversupply. We investigate whether this effect is even more pronounced when decision makers are influenced by their social environment. Using data of minimum prices for renewable energy production in Germany, we analyze if individual decisions to install solar panels are affected by the investment decisions of others. We implement a propensity score matching routine on municipality level and estimate that existing panels in the municipality increase the probability and number of further installations considerably, even in areas with minimal solar potential. This social effect is stronger in areas with more solar potential and less unemployment. A higher number of existing panels and more concentrated installations increase the social effect further. We discuss policy implications of these social effects.
    Keywords: EEG , Minimum Prices , Peer Effects , Public Policy , Renewable Energy , Social Interaction , Social Effect , Social Multiplier , Solar Power , Solar Panels , Subsidy
    JEL: H23 L14 Q42 Q48 Q58
    Date: 2016
  15. By: Gamberoni, Elisa; Gradeva, Katerina; Weber, Sebastian
    Abstract: This study focuses on the employment effect of a hiring subsidy available to firms with less than 50 employees, granted in the context of the 2012 Spanish labour market reform. Exploiting the arbitrary firm size threshold using regression discontinuity design, estimates show on average 2 percentage points higher employment growth for firms that became eligible for the scheme. However, tests and complementary regressions suggest that the higher employment growth for smaller firms in 2013 is driven by a 2010 reform, which imposes more stringent reporting requirements on larger firms. Accounting for this using difference-in-discontinuity regressions, we fail to find any significant effect of the subsidy on increasing employment of eligible firms. While our study suggests several pitfalls arising from size-contingent regulations, more data are needed to test for benecial long-term effects from the hiring subsidy in addressing duality of the Spanish labour market. JEL Classification: C21, D22, E24, H25
    Keywords: employment subsidies, firm response, labour market reforms, quasi-experiment, regression discontinuity design
    Date: 2016–10
  16. By: Cecilia Jona Lasinio (ISTAT); Stefano Manzocchi (LUISS "Guido Carli"); Valentina Meliciani (LUISS "Guido Carli")
    Abstract: This paper investigates the role of intangible assets as factors influencing participation in global value chains (GVC) in a sample of European economies. We distinguish between different forms of participation in GVC entailing a different degree of capability to create value added domestically and we examine how different intangible assets contribute to foster countries’ engagement in GVC and the reaping of benefits from such participation. The data cover 14 European countries in two broad sectors (manufacturing and total market services) over the period 1995-2014. We find that investing in intangible assets favours participation in GVC and contributes to value appropriation along the chain. Moreover, different intangible assets contribute differently to forward and backward participation.
    Keywords: Intangible assets; global value chains; forward and backward participation; R&D expenditure
    JEL: F23 O30
    Date: 2016
  17. By: Hall, Caroline (IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy); Kotakorpi, Kaisa (University of Turku, CESifo); Liljeberg, Linus (IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy); Pirttilä, Jukka (UNU-WIDER, University of Tampere, CESifo)
    Abstract: We study the anatomy of responses to a major activation programme targeted at unemployed youth, introduced in Sweden in 2007. We use a regression discontinuity design to analyse individual reactions to the programme. We find that individuals who have a relatively high predicted probability of finding a job respond to the threat of activation, whereas there is no significant effect for individuals in a weaker labour market position. This is consistent with activation programmes working as a screening device between those who are able to find work on their own vs. those who are not. In addition to examining traditional predictors of poor labour market outcomes (e.g. education and school dropout status), we find a strong concentration of health problems among individuals with poor labour market prospects. We use register data covering the entire Swedish population, including very detailed information on health.
    Keywords: activation; unemployment; health; school drop-outs
    JEL: I10 J64 J68
    Date: 2016–09–15
  18. By: Barbara Engels; Johannes Geyer; Peter Haan
    Abstract: In this paper we exploit a cohort-specific pension reform to estimate the causal labour market effects of changes in the financial incentives to retire. In particular, we analyze the effects of the introduction of cohort-specific deductions for early retirement on female retirement, employment and unemployment. For the empirical analysis we use high-quality administrative data from the German pension insurance. We present evidence for sizable labour market effects. In addition to direct effects on women older than 60 we find important anticipation effects before reaching the pension eligibility age. Overall we document that the pension reform leads to a postponement of retirement, an increase in employment and a shifting in unemployment over age rather than a substitution into unemployment.
    Keywords: Retirement age, pension reform, labour supply, actuarial deductions, cohort-specific pension reform, labour market effects
    JEL: J14 J18 J22 J26 H21
    Date: 2016
  19. By: Valentin Bertsch; Hyland, Marie; Mahony, Michael
    Abstract: Across the EU, significant infrastructure investment is needed in both generation from renewable energy sources (RES) and the electricity transmission system to meet the European targets on emission reduction and RES expansion. Experiences show, however, that citizens may object to new energy infrastructure in their localities which may cause delays in achieving the targets. To avoid such delays, it is crucial to understand what drives people’s opinions. To explore people’s opinions of different electricity generation and transmission technologies in Ireland, we conducted a nationally-representative survey. Concerning the drivers, we explicitly distinguish between socio-demographics, socio-psychological/political beliefs, and contextual/local factors. Our results show that people generally have positive views of RES technologies. While this indicates that Irish citizens agree with the move towards cleaner electricity sources, we find a reluctance amongst people to have these technologies located close to their homes. As for the drivers, we find that the respondents’ socio-psychological and political beliefs are generally more important than most socio-demographics in driving their opinions and their tendency to oppose infrastructure development locally. This finding underlines the relevance for policy makers to understand which objectives people consider most important and how these judgements are related to their opinions of different energy technologies.
    Date: 2016–10
  20. By: Stancanelli, Elena G. F. (Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques)
    Abstract: Retirement policies are individually designed but the majority of people of retirement age live as couples. We estimate the effects of a French pension reform on spouses' employment decisions. We use labor-force survey data, pooled over different years, on fifty thousand French couples and apply a regression discontinuity framework, also controlling for couple's unobserved heterogeneity. We conclude that the reform immediately reduced both spouses' retirement probability. The wife's retirement probability also drops by 1 to 4 percentage points if the husband is hit by the reform, and vice-versa. Instrumenting spousal retirement with legal retirement age, own retirement probability rises by 2 to 6 percentage points upon spousal retirement.
    Keywords: policy evaluation, retirement, ageing
    JEL: J14 C1 C36 D04
    Date: 2016–10
  21. By: Sonja Avlijas
    Abstract: Female labour force participation (hereinafter FLFP) trends across Eastern Europe, which were very high during communism, started to diverge substantially following its collapse. Women did not appear to benefit from the changing labour market conditions in those transition countries that pursued industrial upgrading as their strategy of economic development. On the other hand, in some small transition economies, most notably the Baltic countries, women benefited substantially from increased employment opportunities in the knowledge-intensive public and private sector services. This article seeks to explain the observed variation in FLFP rates across the region by synthesising insights from macroeconomic and comparative political economy literature. It identifies four key relationships between industrial upgrading, educational expansion and the expansion of knowledge-intensive services and examines how these factors interacted and translated into specific FLFP outcomes. The article suggests that industrial upgrading, driven by foreign direct investment, created a vicious cycle for FLFP. First of all, the upgrading led to a defeminisation of manufacturing because female labour-intensive sectors were not upgraded. Furthermore, the upgrading absorbed the budgetary resources that could have been used for educational reform and general skills formation. This lack of educational reform impeded the development of knowledge-intensive services, which would have been more conducive to the generation of female employment. The virtuous cycle of FLFP, on the other hand, occurred in those Eastern European countries that turned to reforming their ed-ucational sector towards general skills and expansion of tertiary education, with the aim of transforming themselves into knowledge economies. Such a transformation required an active social investment oriented state and an expansion of knowledge-intensive public and private sector employment. This development path created a positive causal loop for FLFP. I test these propositions quantitatively on a sample of 13 Eastern European countries.
    Keywords: female labour force participation, industrial upgrading, knowledge intensive economy, social investment, capitalist diversity, Eastern Europe
    Date: 2016–11
  22. By: Baumöhl, Eduard; Výrostová, Eva
    Abstract: We provide evidence of a positive relationship between the intensity of gambling and economic growth in 27 European countries for 2005–2013. Our proxy for gambling is represented by government revenues from taxes on lotteries, betting and gambling. This variable is linked to GDP growth in a panel regression framework and pooled OLS. However, when we split our sample to account for the heterogeneity among European countries, we found that the positive “gambling – GDP growth” relationship is driven extensively by the Central and Eastern European countries. It appears that people in these countries tend to gamble more when the economy is expanding.
    Keywords: gambling, lottery, GDP growth, European countries
    JEL: L83 O1 O4
    Date: 2016–11–10
  23. By: Gustavo De Santis (Dipartimento di Statistica, Informatica, Applicazioni "G. Parenti", Università di Firenze); Valentina Tocchioni (Dipartimento di Statistica, Informatica, Applicazioni "G. Parenti", Università di Firenze); Chiara Seghieri (Laboratorio Management e Sanità , Istituto di Management, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Pisa); Sabina Nuti (Laboratorio Management e Sanità , Istituto di Management, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Pisa)
    Abstract: The Tuscany region constitutes an excellence at the national level for the quality of its health services. Following the WHO guidelines on the prenatal and childcare services, it has an integrated path targeted at pregnant women, called "birth path", to take care of all clinical and non-clinical aspects of pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum. New mothers’ evaluation of the birth path was the object of a specific survey, conducted in Tuscany in 2012-2013, which is analyzed in detail in this paper. Focusing on the association of women’s socio-demographic characteristics and overall satisfaction of the care path using multilevel modelling, the main conclusion is that, while the average was high, significant differences in satisfaction levels emerge between women from different socio-demographic groups. Women’s satisfaction at childbirth is generally considered an important indicator of the quality of maternity services, with implications on the health and well-being of the mother and the child. However, the effect of women’s characteristics on satisfaction is under-investigated, especially in Italy: our research aims at filling this gap.
    Keywords: Tuscany, Italy, childbirth, pregnancy, satisfaction evaluation, birth experience, multilevel models, health system strategies
    JEL: I14 C25 C13 N34
    Date: 2016–11
  24. By: Damián Tojeiro-Rivero (AQR Research Group-IREA. University of Barcelona. Av.Diagonal 696; 08034 Barcelona, Spain.); Rosina Moreno (AQR Research Group-IREA. University of Barcelona. Av.Diagonal 696; 08034 Barcelona, Spain.); Erika Badillo (AQR Research Group-IREA. University of Barcelona. Av.Diagonal 696; 08034 Barcelona, Spain.)
    Abstract: Based on the Spanish Technological Innovation Panel, this paper explores the role of R&D offshoring on innovation performance from 2004 to 2013. Specifically, we focus our attention on the impact of different types of offshoring governance models on the profitability of developing breakthrough innovations. Using a novel methodology for panel data sets, we control for the heterogeneity of firms as well as for the sample selection and endogeneity. Our study provides evidence that firms developing breakthrough innovations tend to benefit more from the external acquisition of knowledge than those engaged in incremental innovations. We also find evidence that acquiring knowledge from firms outside the group is more profitable than doing so with firms within the group. Moreover, the external acquisition of knowledge tends to present a higher return on breakthrough innovation in the case of taking such knowledge from the business sector rather than from universities or research institutions. Finally, the recent financial crisis has led to an increase in the return of the foreign acquisition of knowledge on the generation of breakthrough innovations.
    Keywords: Endogeneity; Panel data; R&D offshoring; Spanish firms; Sample selection; Technological and organizational space. JEL classification:
    Date: 2016–11
  25. By: Javier Changoluisa (School of Economics and Business Administration, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena); Michael Fritsch (School of Economics and Business Administration, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena)
    Abstract: We investigate the relationship between new business formation and the level of competitive pressure perceived by manufacturing incumbent establishments. The perceived pressure of competition is stronger the higher the level of entries in the respective industry. This relationship holds not only for start-ups located in the same region of the incumbent, but also for start-ups across all regions of Germany. The productivity level of an incumbent moderates the extent of the perceived competitive pressure from start-ups. Highly productive incumbents are less threatened by new business formation. Such a moderating effect cannot be found for incumbent size and regional population density.
    Keywords: New business formation, competitive pressure, regional competition, incumbent firms, manufacturing industries
    JEL: L26 L60 D20 O12 R11
    Date: 2016–11–14
  26. By: Bertola, Giuseppe
    Abstract: This paper uses a large and detailed dataset to characterize the enrolment and educational performance of regulated and subsidized French private schools. Individual ability reduces the probability of private secondary schooling. Structural models indeed find that both observable and unobservable initial ability matter less in private than in State schools for successful secondary school completion and access to tertiary education.
    Keywords: Education financing; Family background; School selection.
    JEL: I22 I24
    Date: 2016–11

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