nep-geo New Economics Papers
on Economic Geography
Issue of 2008‒12‒21
six papers chosen by
Vassilis Monastiriotis
London School of Economics

  1. Spatial Inequalities Explained - Evidence from Burkina Faso By Johannes Gräb; Michael Grimm
  2. Start-Ups and Employment Growth - Evidence from Sweden By Martin Andersson; Florian Noseleit
  3. The Regional Dimension of Collective Wage Bargaining: The Case of Belgium By Plasman, Robert; Rusinek, Michael; Tojerow, Ilan
  4. Clusters’ development: spin-offs and external economies By Christian Garavaglia
  5. Internal Migration of Immigrants: Do Immigrants Respond to Regional Labour Demand Shocks? By Ostrovsky, Yuri; Hou, Feng; Picot, Garnett
  6. The Economics of Climate Change Impacts and Policy Benefits at City Scale: A Conceptual Framework By Stéphane Hallegatte; Fanny Henriet; Jan Corfee-Morlot

  1. By: Johannes Gräb; Michael Grimm
    Abstract: Empirical evidence suggests that regional disparities in incomes are often very high, that these disparities do not necessarily disappear as economies grow and that these disparities are itself an important driver of growth. We use a novel approach based on multilevel modeling to decompose the sources of spatial disparities in incomes among households in Burkina Faso. We show that spatial disparities are not only driven by the spatial concentration of households with particular endowments but to a large extent also by disparities in community endowments. Climatic differences across regions due also matter, but to a much smaller extent.
    Keywords: Spatial inequality, poverty, multilevel modeling, decomposition, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: C21 I32 O12 R12
    Date: 2008
  2. By: Martin Andersson (Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies (CESIS), Royal Institute of Technology and Jönköping International Business School (JIBS)); Florian Noseleit (Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, School of Economics and Business Administration)
    Abstract: We use longitudinal data over a decade on start-ups and employment in Swedish regions and analyze the effect of start-ups on subsequent employment growth. We extend previous analyses by examining the influence of regional start-ups in a sector on regional employment growth in the same sector and on other sectors. We find differences between different types of start-ups. Knowledge-intensive start-ups seem to have larger effects on the regional economy. In particular, start-ups in high-end services have significant negative impacts on employment in other sectors but a positive long-run impact. This is consistent with the idea that start-ups are a vehicle for changes in the composition of regional industry. Moreover, our results illustrate that the known S-shaped pattern can be attributed to different effects that start-ups in a sector have on employment change in the same sector and in others.
    Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Employment Growth, Regional Development, Start-ups
    JEL: J23 M13 O52
    Date: 2008–12–09
  3. By: Plasman, Robert (Free University of Brussels); Rusinek, Michael (ECARES, Free University of Brussels); Tojerow, Ilan (Free University of Brussels)
    Abstract: The potential failure of national industry agreements to take into account productivity levels of least productive regions has been considered as one of the causes of regional unemployment in European countries. Two solutions are generally proposed: the first, encouraged by the European commission and the OECD, consists in decentralising wage bargaining to the firm. The second solution, the regionalisation of wage bargaining, is frequently mentioned in Belgium or in Italy where regional unemployment differentials are high. The objective of this paper is to verify if the Belgian wage setting system, where industry bargaining has a national scope, indeed prevents regional productivity levels to be taken into account in wage formation. Using a very rich linked employer-employee dataset which provides detailed information on wages, productivity, and worker's and firm's characteristics, we find that regional wage differentials and regional productivity differentials within joint committees are positively correlated. Moreover, this relation is stronger (i) for joint committees where firm-level bargaining is relatively frequent and (ii) for joint committees already sub-divided along a local line. We conclude that the current Belgian wage setting system (which combines interprofessional, industry and firm level bargaining) already includes mechanisms that allow regional productivity to be taken into account.
    Keywords: wages, collective bargaining, federalism, regions, Belgium
    JEL: D31 J31 J41
    Date: 2008–12
  4. By: Christian Garavaglia (University of Milano-Bicocca, Milan and CESPRI/KITeS, Bocconi University, Milan - Italy)
    Abstract: The claim of the paper is that industrial clusters need to be studied from a dynamic perspective. The complexity of cluster formation may be ascribed to its multi-dimensional and multidisciplinary character. The former refers to the co-involvement of individuals’ decisions, firms’ activities and institutions. The latter relates to the psychological, social, cultural and economic aspects needed to explain the birth end evolution of firms’ agglomerations. The paper proposes that theoretical framework which integrate different explanations, as put in evidence by the different approaches in literature, is more apt for grasping the evolution and complexity of clusters. Particular emphasis is given to the processes of spin-off formation.
    Keywords: cluster, spin-off, entrepreneurship, social ties, external economies.
    JEL: R11 O18 L26 M13 D85
    Date: 2008–11
  5. By: Ostrovsky, Yuri; Hou, Feng; Picot, Garnett
    Abstract: The recent economic boom in the Canadian province of Alberta provides an ideal "natural experiment" to examine immigrants' responses to a strong labour demand outside major metropolitan centres. The key finding of our study, which is based on a unique dataset that combines administrative and immigrant records, is that not only did immigrants respond to the recent economic boom in Alberta, but they responded generally more strongly than non-immigrants. We find, however, a great deal of heterogeneity in the magnitude of the response across different regions and for different categories of immigrants.
    Keywords: Ethnic diversity and immigration, Population and demography, Mobility and migration
    Date: 2008–12–05
  6. By: Stéphane Hallegatte; Fanny Henriet; Jan Corfee-Morlot
    Abstract: Climate change has become a priority issue in global environmental governance and cities are important players. For over three decades, the OECD has been actively supporting member and non-member countries to design environmental policies that are both economically efficient and effective at achieving their environmental objectives.1 Through peer reviews of policy implementation, the OECD helps governments to improve their collective and individual environmental performance, through sound economic and policy analysis and dialogue on how to establish and to achieve climate change goals. Climate change has been on the agenda since the late 1980s at the OECD, where we provide a forum for countries to, discuss and develop a shared understanding of the key policy challenges as well as to assess performance and identify good practice in the design and implementation of climate policies. Today the OECD is actively working with governments to highlight the role of cities to deliver cost-effective policy responses to climate change. A number of projects at the OECD are advancing the understanding of the roles that cities can play to respond to efficiently and effectively to climate change. This report is one in a series under the OECD Environment Directorate’s project on Cities and Climate Change. The project aims to explore the city-scale risks of climate change and the local benefits of both adaptation policies and (global) mitigation strategies.
    Keywords: sustainable development, government policy, climate change, global warming, natural disasters, regional economics, General Macroeconomics, Regional, Urban and rural Analyses
    JEL: Q01 Q51 Q54 Q56 Q58 R00
    Date: 2008–12–10

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