nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2006‒04‒01
twelve papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
Universita degli Studi di Roma, La Sapienza

  1. Human Capital, R&D and Regional Export Performance By Gråsjö, Urban
  2. Optimal wealth taxes with risky human capital By Borys Grochulski; Tomasz Piskorski
  3. Do Population Control Policies Induce More Human Capital Investment? Twins, Birthweight, and China's 'One Child' Policy By Mark R. Rosenzweig; Junsen Zhang
  4. Starting anew: Entrepreneurial intentions and realizations subsequent to business closure By Erik Stam; Veronique Schutjens
  5. Understanding the determinants of crime By Ayse Imrohoroglu; Antonio Merlo; Peter Rupert
  6. The Effects of Teacher Training on Teacher Value Added By Douglas Harris; Tim R. Sass
  7. On the aggregate and distributional implications of productivity differences across countries By Andres Erosa; Tatyana Koreshkova; Diego Restuccia
  8. School choice : income and peer effect differentiation By Saïd Hanchane; Tarek Mostafa
  9. Classroom Peer Effects and Student Achievement By Mary A. Burke; Tim R. Sass
  10. Teaching an old dog new tricks: Improved estimation of the parameters of SDEs by numerical solution of the Fokker-Planck equation By Stan Hurn; J.Jeisman; K.A. Lindsay
  11. Childbearing, Marriage and Human Capital Investment By Jo Anna Gray; Jean Stockard; Joe Stone
  12. Labor Participation of Married Women in Colombia By Luis Eduardo Arango; Carlos Esteban Posada

  1. By: Gråsjö, Urban (CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies, Royal Institute of Technology)
    Abstract: The main purpose of the study in this paper is to establish to what extent accessibility to R&D and human capital can explain regional export. This is done by estimating knowledge production functions, with export value and high valued exports in Swedish municipalities from 1997 to 1999 as outputs. In order to account for geographical proximity, the explanatory variables are expressed as accessibilities to R&D and human capital. The total accessibility is divided into three geographical levels; local (within the municipality), intra-regional and inter-regional accessibility to R&D and human capital. R&D conducted at universities and in companies is measured in man years and the numbers of people with at least three years of university studies measures the amount of human capital. The estimations are conducted with quantile regressions since the distributions of the dependent variables are highly skewed with a few very influential outliers. Due to problems with multicollinearity it is not easy to tell if the variations in the municipalities’ exports are explained by human capital or company R&D. But the results in the paper indicate that accessibility to human capital has the greatest positive effects. The value of exported products is mainly affected by local accessibility to human capital (and company R&D). The intra- and inter-regional accessibilities play a more important roll when the number of high valued export products in Swedish municipalities is the output.
    Keywords: knowledge production; R&D; human capital; exports; quantile regression
    JEL: O18 R11
    Date: 2006–03–28
  2. By: Borys Grochulski; Tomasz Piskorski
    Abstract: We study the structure of optimal wealth and labor income taxes in a Mirrlees economy in which the productivity of labor (i.e., skill) is private, stochastic, and endogenous. Individual agents' skills are determined by their level of human capital. Human capital is not publicly observable and the returns to human capital investment are subject to idiosyncratic shocks. Preferences are not assumed to be additively separable in consumption and human capital investment and, thus, the intertemporal marginal rates of substitution of consumption are private information. We characterize the optimal allocation and a tax system that implements this allocation in equilibrium. The optimal allocation does not satisfy the "reciprocal Euler equation" of Rogerson [Econometrica, 1985], which holds in Mirrlees economies with exogenous skills. The tax system we use in our decentralization of the optimum consists of a wealth tax that is linear in wealth and a labor income tax that depends solely on labor income. The result of Kocherlakota [Econometrica, 2005], establishing the optimality of zero expected marginal wealth tax rate, holds in our model. We show that endogenous skill determination affects the volatility of marginal wealth taxes rather than their expectation. Relative to economies with exogenous skills, the optimal marginal wealth tax rate is more volatile in our endogenous skill economy. Also, we demonstrate the optimality of a wedge in the returns on the two assets present in our economy: At the optimum, the marginal return on human capital investment is strictly larger than the marginal return on physical capital investment.
    Keywords: Human capital ; Wealth
    Date: 2005
  3. By: Mark R. Rosenzweig (Economic Growth Center, Yale University); Junsen Zhang (Chinese University of Hong Kong)
    Abstract: In this paper we use a new data set describing households with and without twin children in China to quantify the trade-off between the quality and quantity of children using the incidence of twins that for the first time takes into account effects associated with the lower birthweight and closer-spacing of twins compared to singleton births. We show that examining the effects of twinning by birth order, net of the effects stemming from the birthweight deficit of twins, can provide upper and lower bounds on the trade-off between family size and average child quality. Our estimates indicate that, at least in one area of China, an extra child at parity one or at parity two, net of birthweight effects, significantly decreases the schooling progress, the expected college enrollment, grades in school and the assessed health of all children in the family. We also show that estimates of the effects of twinning at higher parities on the outcomes of older children in prior studies do not identify family size effects but are confounded by inter-child allocation effects because of the birthweight deficit of twins. Despite the evident significant trade-off between number of children and child quality in China, however, the findings suggest that the contribution of the one-child policy in China to the development of its human capital was modest.
    Keywords: Family size, Birthweight, Schooling, China
    JEL: J13 I12 I21
  4. By: Erik Stam; Veronique Schutjens
    Abstract: We know that most businesses fail. But what is not known is to what extent failed ex-entrepreneurs set up in business again. The objective of this article is to explore potential and realized serial entrepreneurship. Based on three disciplines – psychology, labour economics, and the sociology of careers – we formulated propositions to explain (potential) serial entrepreneurship. We tested these propositions empirically with a longitudinal database of 79 businesses that had closed within 5 years after start-up. A large majority of the ex- entrepreneurs maintained entrepreneurial intentions subsequent to business closure, while almost one in four business closures were followed by a new business (serial entrepreneurship). Our results show that the determinants of restart intention (potential serial entrepreneurship) and actual restart realization (realized serial entrepreneurship) are different. Ex-entrepreneurs who are young, who worked full-time in their prior business, and who recall their business management experience positively are likely to harbour restart intentions. Only ‘being located in an urban region’ transpired to have a significant effect on the start of a new business. Although entrepreneurial intentions are a necessary condition for the start of a new business, this study shows that the explanation of entrepreneurial intentions is distinct from the explanation of new business formation subsequent to business closure.
    Keywords: serial entrepreneurship; business closure; entrepreneurial intentions; new business formation, The Netherlands
    Date: 2006–03
  5. By: Ayse Imrohoroglu; Antonio Merlo; Peter Rupert
    Abstract: In this paper, we use an overlapping generations model where individuals are allowed to engage in both legitimate market activities and criminal behavior in order to assess the role of certain factors on the property crime rate. In particular, we investigate if any of the following could be capable of generating the large differences in crime rates that are observed across countries: differences in the unemployment rate, the fraction of low-human-capital individuals in an economy, the probability of apprehension, the duration of jail sentences, and income inequality. We find that small differences in the probability of apprehension and in income inequality can generate quantitatively significant differences in the crime rates across similar environments.
    Keywords: Crime
    Date: 2006
  6. By: Douglas Harris (Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Florida State University); Tim R. Sass (Department of Economics, Florida State University)
    Abstract: We study the effects of various types of education and training on teacherproductivity. Previous studies on the subject have been hampered by inadequatemeasures of teacher training and difficulties addressing the non-random selectionof teachers to students and of teachers to training. We address all of theselimitations by estimating models with student, teacher, and school fixed effectsusing an extensive database from the state of Florida. Our results suggest thatteacher training generally has little influence on productivity. One exception isthat content-focused teacher professional development is positively associatedwith productivity in middle and high school math. In addition, more experiencedteachers appear more effective in teaching elementary and middle school reading.There is no evidence that either pre-service (undergraduate) training or thescholastic aptitude of teachers influences their productivity. These results callinto question previous findings based on models that do not adequately control forthe various forms of selection bias.
    Keywords: Teacher Quality, Teacher Training, Teacher Productivity, Student Achievement
    JEL: I2 J24 J44
    Date: 2006–03
  7. By: Andres Erosa; Tatyana Koreshkova; Diego Restuccia
    Abstract: We develop a quantitative theory of human capital with heterogeneous agents in order to assess the sources of cross-country income differences. The cross-sectional implications of the theory and U.S. data are used to restrict the parameters of human capital technology. We then assess the model's ability to explain the cross-country data. Our quantitative model generates a total-factor-productivity (TFP) elasticity of output per worker of 2.8. This implies that a factor of 3 difference in TFP is amplified through physical and human capital accumulation to generate a factor of 20 difference in output per worker --- as observed in the data between rich and poor countries. The implied difference in TFP is in the range of estimates from micro studies. The theory suggests that using Mincer returns to measure human capital understates human capital differences across countries by a factor of 2. The cross-country differences in human capital implied by the theory are consistent with evidence from earnings of immigrants in the United States. We also find that TFP has substantial effects on cross-sectional inequality and intergenerational mobility and that public education policies can have important aggregate and distributional implications.
    Keywords: Human capital
    Date: 2006
  8. By: Saïd Hanchane (LEST - Laboratoire d'économie et de sociologie du travail - - [CNRS : UMR6123] - [Université de Provence - Aix-Marseille I][Université de la Méditerranée - Aix-Marseille II] - []); Tarek Mostafa (LEST - Laboratoire d'économie et de sociologie du travail - - [CNRS : UMR6123] - [Université de Provence - Aix-Marseille I][Université de la Méditerranée - Aix-Marseille II] - [])
    Abstract: In this paper, we analyze the equilibrium on the market for schooling where both public and private schools coexist and where individuals are differentiated by income and ability. We study the distribution of students across sectors while examining the conditions for the existence of a majority voting equilibrium in the context of non single peaked preferences. Finally, we examine the existence of a hierarchy of school qualities, as a consequence of the discriminating pricing strategy used by private schools to internalize the effect of peer groups.
    Keywords: Education market; Majority voting equilibrium; Peer group effect; Pricing discrimination; Educational opportunity
    Date: 2006–03–28
  9. By: Mary A. Burke (Research Department, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston); Tim R. Sass (Department of Economics, Florida State University)
    Abstract: In this paper we analyze a unique micro-level panel data set encompassing all publicschool students in grades 3-10 in the state of Florida for each of the years 1999/2000-2003/2004.We are able to directly link each student and teacher to a specific classroom and can thus identifyeach member of a student’s classroom peer group. The ability to track individual studentsthrough multiple classrooms over time and multiple classes for each teacher enables us to controlfor many sources of spurious peer effects such as fixed individual student characteristics andfixed teacher inputs, as well as to compare the strength of peer effects across different groupingsof peers, across grade levels, and to compare the effects of fixed versus time-varying peercharacteristics. We find mixed results on the importance of peers in the linear-in-means model,and resolve some of these apparent conflicts by considering non-linear specifications of peereffects. The results suggest that some grouping by ability may create Pareto improvements overuniformly mixed classrooms. In general we find that contemporaneous behavior wields strongerinfluence than peers’ fixed characteristics.
    Keywords: Peer Effects, Student Achievement
    JEL: I2 Z13
    Date: 2006–02
  10. By: Stan Hurn; J.Jeisman; K.A. Lindsay (School of Economics and Finance, Queensland University of Technology)
    Abstract: Many stochastic differential equations (SDEs) do not have readily available closed-form expressions for their transitional probability density functions (PDFs). As a result, a large number of competing estimation approaches have been proposed in order to obtain maximum-likelihood estimates of their parameters. Arguably the most straightforward of these is one in which the required estimates of the transitional PDF are obtained by numerical solution of the Fokker-Planck (or forward-Kolmogorov) partial differential equation. Despite the fact that this method produces accurate estimates and is completely generic, it has not proved popular in the applied literature. Perhaps this is attributable to the fact that this approach requires repeated solution of a parabolic partial differential equation to obtain the transitional PDF and is therefore computationally quite expensive. In this paper, three avenues for improving the reliability and speed of this estimation method are introduced and explored in the context of estimating the parameters of the popular Cox-Ingersoll-Ross and Ornstein-Uhlenbeck models. The recommended algorithm that emerges from this investigation is seen to offer substantial gains in reliability and computational time.
    Keywords: stochastic differential equations, maximum likelihood, finite difference, finite element, cumulative distribution function, interpolation.
    Date: 2006
  11. By: Jo Anna Gray (University of Oregon Economics Department); Jean Stockard (University of Oregon Department of Planning, Public Policy, and Management); Joe Stone (University of Oregon Economics Department)
    Abstract: This paper proposes and tests a simple joint explanation for i) increases in marital and nonmarital birth rates in the United States over recent decades, ii) the dramatic rise in the share of nonmarital births, and iii) the pronounced racial differences in the timing of childbearing. The explanation arises from differences across time and race in the attractiveness of marriage and opportunities for investment in human capital. For given preferences, a decline in the marriage rate necessarily causes both the marital and nonmarital birth rates to increase, with no change in the total birth rate. This model exhibits exceptional power in replicating salient features of childbearing behavior. Our results suggest that changes in marital and nonmarital birth rates, as well as in the share of nonmarital births, arose primarily from changes in marriage behavior, not from changes in fertility; and that racial differences in the timing of childbearing reflect early differences in human capital investment.
    Keywords: illegitimacy ratio, marriage, birth rates, education, welfare
    JEL: J12 J13 I38
    Date: 2006–02–01
  12. By: Luis Eduardo Arango; Carlos Esteban Posada
    Abstract: A pseudo-panel was built to estimate the determinants of the labor participation decision of married women between 1984 and 2000. Past participation decisions, education level, labor income taxes, children between 1 and 2 years of age, and the presence of other people unemployed at home are the main explanatory variables of married women’s labor participation in Colombia . The interest rate variable does not offer any insight into that decision.
    Keywords: married women, labor participation, state-dependence, fertility.
    JEL: C21 C23 C25 J22 J13

This nep-hrm issue is ©2006 by Fabio Sabatini. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
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