nep-geo New Economics Papers
on Economic Geography
Issue of 2019‒12‒02
eight papers chosen by
Andreas Koch
Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung

  1. Are Regional Differences in Personality and their Correlates robust? Applying Spatial Analysis Techniques to Examine Regional Variation in Personality across the U.S. and Germany By Tobias Ebert; Jochen E. Gebauer; Thomas Brenner; Wiebke Bleidorn; Samuel D. Gosling; Jeff Potter; P. Jason Rentfrow
  2. Whose Realm, His Trust - Regional Disparities of Generalized Trust in Europe By Stephany, Fabian
  3. Big-city life (dis)satisfaction? The effect of living in urban areas on subjective well-being By David Loschiavo
  4. Does the Implementation of the Schengen Agreement Boost Cross-Border Commuting? Evidence from Switzerland By Parenti, Angela; Tealdi, Cristina
  5. Tourism and local growth in Italy By Emanuele Ciani; Raffaello Bronzini; Francesco Montaruli
  6. Big or small cities? On city size and economic growth. By Frick, Susanne A.; Rodríguez-Pose, Andrés
  7. The Causal Economic Effects of Olympic Games on Host Regions By Matthias Firgo
  8. Urban agglomerations and firm access to credit By Amanda Carmignani; Guido de Blasio; Cristina Demma; Alessio D'Ignazio

  1. By: Tobias Ebert (University of Mannheim); Jochen E. Gebauer (University of Mannheim, University of Copenhagen); Thomas Brenner (Philipps-University Marburg); Wiebke Bleidorn (University of California at Davis); Samuel D. Gosling (University of Texas at Austin, University of Melbourne); Jeff Potter (Atof Inc., Cambridge, MA.); P. Jason Rentfrow (University of Cambridge)
    Abstract: There is growing evidence that personality traits are spatially clustered across geographic regions and that regionally aggregated personality scores are related to political, economic, social, and health outcomes. However, much of the evidence comes from research that has relied on methods that are ill-suited for working with spatial data. Consequently, the validity and generalizability of that work is unclear. The present work addresses two main challenges of working with spatial data (i.e., Modifiable Aerial Unit Problem and spatial dependencies) and evaluates data-analytic techniques designed to tackle those challenges. Using analytic techniques designed for spatial data, we offer a practical guideline for working with spatial data in psychological research. Specifically, we investigate the robustness of regional personality differences and their correlates within the U.S. (Study 1: N = 3,387,303) and Germany (Study 2: N = 110,029). To account for the Modifiable Aerial Unit Problem, we apply a mapping approach that visualizes distributional patterns without aggregating to a higher level and examine the correlates of regional personality scores across multiple levels of spatial aggregation. To account for spatial dependencies, we examine the correlates of regional personality scores using spatial econometric models. Overall, our results suggest that regional personality differences are robust and can be reliably studied across countries and spatial levels. At the same time, the results also show that ignoring the methodological challenges of spatial data can have serious consequences for research concerned with regional personality differences.
    Keywords: Geographical Psychology, Personality, Spatial Analysis
    Date: 2019–11
  2. By: Stephany, Fabian
    Abstract: Trust explains the functioning of markets, institutions or society as a whole. It is a key element in almost every commercial transaction over time and might be one of the main explanations of economic success and development. In Europe, the determinants of (generalized) trust have been investigated in the past. Most scholars have focused on aggregate (national) levels of trust. However, it can be assumed that driving forces, which foster or diminish trust, act at a sub-national level. Regional clusters remain undetected. With the use of the European Social Survey 6 and modern spatial diagnostics, this work examines the individual and regional determinants of trust in 88 European NUTS1 regions in 26 countries. There are two main findings. First, wealth, linguistic fragmentation, and religious ideologies shape trust on a regional level, education, income, and membership in associations foster trust on an individual level. Secondly, the study unravels regional dispersions in different types of "trust regimes" in Europe. Regional clusters of generalized trust are confirmed by spatial diagnostics. The "regionality" of trust could be of importance for future targeted policy making.
    Date: 2019–08–25
  3. By: David Loschiavo (Bank of Italy)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of big-city life on individuals' well-being. Combining data on Italian municipalities' characteristics with individual-level survey data, I find that city size negatively affects subjective well-being. This association is not driven by omitted variable bias or by spatial sorting of citizens. Commute time accounts for most of the differences in subjective well-being among cities of different size. There is suggestive evidence that the negative effect of commuting on well-being is caused by reduced time availability for fostering personal relationships and engaging in leisure activities. This finding suggests that interventions reducing the amount of time people spend in an unpleasant state can spur agglomeration economies and their contribution to aggregate productivity and growth.
    Keywords: subjective well-being, urbanization, commute time
    JEL: D60 I3 R23 R41 H54 J61
    Date: 2019–06
  4. By: Parenti, Angela (University of Pisa); Tealdi, Cristina (Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh)
    Abstract: In this paper we study the effects of Switzerland implementing the Schengen agreement on cross-border commuting from regions of neighbouring countries. As vehicles are allowed to cross borders without stopping and residents in border areas are granted freedom to cross borders away from fixed checkpoints, commuting costs are severely reduced. Using data from the European Labour Force Survey, we estimate that the individual probability to cross-border commute to Switzerland in response to this policy has increased among inter-regional commuters in the range between 3 and 6 percentage points, according to different model specifications. Our result is particularly important due the meaningful policy implications, in a time in which the Schengen agreement is under scrutiny and at risk of termination.
    Keywords: Schengen agreement, labour mobility, commuting costs, policy change
    JEL: D04 J61 R10 R23
    Date: 2019–11
  5. By: Emanuele Ciani (Bank of Italy); Raffaello Bronzini (Bank of Italy); Francesco Montaruli (Bank of Italy)
    Abstract: Economic theory and the empirical literature are not conclusive on the relationship between tourism and economic growth. In this paper we estimate the impact of foreign tourists’ spending on value added per capita growth in the Italian provinces, using various econometric strategies. The overall results show that the effect is positive and statistically significant, but modest in economic terms. The impact is larger for the less developed provinces, and null for those that showed the highest tourist revenues per inhabitant at the beginning of the period, suggesting that congestion phenomena may occur.
    Keywords: tourism, economic growth, tourism expenditure, beach disease, dynamic panel data, instrumental variables
    JEL: R00 R10 R11 L83
    Date: 2019–10
  6. By: Frick, Susanne A.; Rodríguez-Pose, Andrés
    Abstract: Policy-makers and academics frequently emphasize a positive link between city size and economic growth. The empirical literature on the relationship, however, is scarce and uses rough indicators for the size for a country’s cities, while ignoring factors that are increasingly considered to shape the relationship. In this paper, we employ a panel of 113 countries between 1980 and 2010 to explore whether (1) there are certain city sizes that are growth enhancing and (2) how additional factors highlighted in the literature impact the city size/growth relationship. The results suggest a non-linear relationship which is dependent on the country’s size. In contrast to the prevailing view that large cities are growth-inducing, for the majority of countries relatively small cities of up to 3 million inhabitants are more conducive to economic growth. A large share of the urban population in cities with more than 10 million inhabitants is only growth promoting in countries with an urban population of 28.5 million and more. In addition, the relationship is highly context dependent: a high share of industries that benefit from agglomeration economies, a well-developed urban infrastructure, and an adequate level of governance effectiveness allow countries to take advantage of agglomeration benefits from larger cities.
    Keywords: city size; economic growth; enabling factors
    JEL: Q15
    Date: 2018–03–07
  7. By: Matthias Firgo
    Abstract: This paper studies the effects of hosting Olympic Games on the regional economy in the short and long run. For identification, runners-up in the Olympic bidding process are used to construct the counterfactual for Olympic host regions. In the short run, hosting Summer Olympics boosts regional GDP per capita by about 3 to 4 percentage points relative to the national level in the year of the event and the year before. There is also evidence for positive long-run effects but results on the latter are not statistically robust. In contrast, Winter Olympics do not have a positive impact on host regions. If anything, they lead to a temporal decline in regional GDP per capita in the years around the event.
    Keywords: Olympic Games, mega events, public infrastructure, regional development, causal effects, sports economics
    Date: 2019–11–23
  8. By: Amanda Carmignani (Bank of Italy); Guido de Blasio (Bank of Italy); Cristina Demma (Bank of Italy); Alessio D'Ignazio (Bank of Italy)
    Abstract: The paper investigates whether firms have better access to bank credit in areas with a larger degree of urbanization. It uses bank-firm data drawn from the Credit Register maintained at the Bank of Italy to devise an indicator of ease of access to credit. The paper proposes an instrumental variable strategy that uses as instruments past population density and urbanization driven by considerations of political economy. The results show that urbanization affects access to credit positively for construction firms, whose collateral greatly benefits from thicker real estate markets. No impact is found for service and manufacturing firms.
    Keywords: surbanization, access to credit
    JEL: G21 R11 R51
    Date: 2019–06

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