nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2008‒05‒10
nine papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
University of Rome, La Sapienza

  1. Internal migration and growth in Italy By Etzo, Ivan
  2. Estimating Cognitive Gaps Between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Australians By Andrew Leigh; Xiaodong Gong
  3. The Human Development Index: A History By Elizabeth Stanton
  4. Features of Successful Entrepreneurs in Estonia By Tiit Elenurm; Ruth Alas
  5. Private Supplementary Tutoring in Turkey: Recent Evidence on Its Various Aspects By Tansel, Aysit; Bircan, Fatma
  6. Education policy and tax competition with imperfect student and labor mobility By Tim Krieger; Thomas Lange
  7. The Immigrant Earnings Disadvantage across the Earnings and Skills Distributions: The Case of Immigrants from the EU’s New Member States in Ireland By Barrett, Alan; McGuinness, Seamus; O'Brien, Martin
  8. Productivity Growth, Knowledge Flows, and Spillovers By Gustavo Crespi; Chiara Criscuolo; Jonathan E. Haskel; Matthew Slaughter
  9. Does Monitoring Decrease Work Effort? By David Dickinson; Marie-Claire Villeval

  1. By: Etzo, Ivan
    Abstract: The analysis focuses on the impact of interregional migration flows on regional growth rates during the period 1983-2002. A first important result is that migration did affect regional growth rates in Italy. Moreover, the results from the analysis of the two sub-periods, 1983-1992 and 1993-2002, show that the different trends of migration flows during the two decades and their differences in human capital content did affect regional growth in different ways. Both net migration rate and gross migration rates are used as regressors in different estimations. Furthermore, in order to investigate how the human capital content of migrants affected the regional growth, a further specification of the empirical model differentiates the migration rates according with their educational attainment. The outcomes show that migrants with a high educational attainment have the strongest impact on regional growth.
    Keywords: internal migration and growth; convergence; human capital; panel data.
    JEL: E0 O18
    Date: 2008–05
  2. By: Andrew Leigh; Xiaodong Gong
    Abstract: Improving cognitive skills of young children has been suggested as a possible strategy for equalising opportunities across racial groups. Using data on 4-5 year olds in the Longitudinal Survey of Australian Children, we focus on two cognitive tests: the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT) and the ‘Who Am I?’ test (WAI). We estimate the test score gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous children to be about 0.3 to 0.4 standard deviations, suggesting that the typical Indigenous 5 year-old has a similar test score to the typical non-Indigenous 4 year-old. Between one-third and two-thirds of the Indigenous/non-Indigenous test score gap appears to be due to socio-economic differences, such as income and parental education. We review the literature on test score differences in Australia, and find that our estimated gaps are lower than most of those found in the literature. This implies that the test score gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous children may widen over the lifecycle, a finding that has implications for policies aimed at improving educational opportunities for Indigenous children.
    Keywords: cognitive ability, racial differentials, early childhood
    JEL: I20 J15
    Date: 2008–04
  3. By: Elizabeth Stanton
    Abstract: This article recounts the intellectual history of the UNDP’s Human Development Index. It begins with the early history of welfare economics and follows this field through three successive revolutions in thought, culminating in the theory of human development. The first section traces this history from the origins of economic “utility” theory to Amartya Sen’s human capabilities approach. The second section chronicles past and present measures of social welfare used in the fields of economics and development, including national income and a variety of composite measures, up to and including HDI.
    Keywords: human development; well-being; human development index; economic history of thought; social welfare measurement
    Date: 2007
  4. By: Tiit Elenurm (Estonian Business School); Ruth Alas (Estonian Business School)
    Abstract: This paper is based on the E-World research programme focusing on international perspectives of entrepreneurship. In the first stage of this international research project, each country had to conduct focus groups in order to develop a preliminary list of traits and behavioural patterns of successful entrepreneurs. Focus groups combined with individual assessments were used for this task. The following features of successful entrepreneurs in Estonia in 2007 were pointed out most often by all categories of respondents: courage to take risks, openness to new information, flexibility, creativity and determination. Networking and acquiring capital, but also selecting the right team and following agreements were described as ways to success. The focus groups stressed some success factors that were seen as being more important for entrepreneurs operating in Estonia in 2007 than in the 1990s: broad world view, wide social network, innovativeness and creativity and lobbying within EU-related structures.
    Keywords: entrepreneur, personality traits, image of entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial features, focus groups, business environment, networking, entrepreneurship training
    JEL: L26 M53
    Date: 2008
  5. By: Tansel, Aysit (Middle East Technical University); Bircan, Fatma (Middle East Technical University)
    Abstract: This paper first describes the educational system in Turkey an the two national examinations for advancing upper levels of schooling which give raise to the demand for private tutoring called “dersane” in Turkish. Second, the evolution of the Private tutoring Centers (PTC) are described and compared with the high schools in the country. Third, geographical distribution of the PTC, general high schools and the proportion of high school age population are compared over the provinces to give an idea about special equity issues. Other topics addressed include gender and PTC students, disruption of mainstream education, determinants of the demand for services of the PTCs, cost of PTCs and evidence on the effectiveness of PTCs.
    Keywords: private tutoring, education, demand for education
    JEL: I20 I21 I22
    Date: 2008–04
  6. By: Tim Krieger (University of Paderborn); Thomas Lange (Ifo institute for economic research & University of Konstanz)
    Abstract: In this paper we analyze the effect of increasing labor (i.e. graduates’/ academics’) and student mobility on net tax revenues when revenuemaximizing governments compete for human capital by means of income tax rates and amenities offered to students (positive expenditure) or rather tuition fees (negative expenditure). We demonstrate that these instruments are strategic complements and that increasing labor mobility due to ongoing globalization not necessarily implies intensified tax competition and an erosion of revenues. On the contrary, the equilibrium tax rate even increases in mobility. Amenities offered to students (or rather tuition fees) may either increase or decrease, and, overall, net revenues increase. An increase in student mobility, however, erodes revenues due to intensified tax and amenity competition.
    Keywords: labor mobility, student mobility, higher education, tax competition, public expenditure competition
    JEL: I22 J61 F22 H2 H87
    Date: 2008–01
  7. By: Barrett, Alan (ESRI, Dublin); McGuinness, Seamus (Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin); O'Brien, Martin (ESRI, Dublin)
    Abstract: As the movement of population from the New Member States (NMS) of the EU to the older members is a relatively new flow, it is important to build up our knowledge of who is moving within Europe and how they are performing in their destinations. In this paper, we analyse the earnings of immigrants in Ireland from the NMS using a new large-scale dataset on employees in Ireland. In so doing, we add to the emerging strand in the literature on immigrant earnings that looks beyond average earnings differentials and considers variations in such differentials across the earnings and skills distributions. We do this partly by using quantile regressions and also by analyzing earnings differentials within educational categories. We find that the average earnings difference between immigrants from the NMS and natives is between 10 percent and 18 percent, depending on the controls used. However, the difference is found to be either non-existent or low for people with low skill levels and for people at the lower end of the earnings distribution. The difference is higher for those at the upper ends of the skills and earnings distributions. This suggests that the transferability of human capital is a crucial determinant of the immigrant-native earnings gap for NMS immigrants in Ireland.
    Keywords: new member states, Ireland, immigrant earnings, quantile regression
    JEL: J31 J61
    Date: 2008–04
  8. By: Gustavo Crespi; Chiara Criscuolo; Jonathan E. Haskel; Matthew Slaughter
    Abstract: This paper explores the role of knowledge flows and productivity growth by linking direct survey data on knowledge flows to firm-level data on TFP growth. Our data measure the information flows often considered important, especially by policy-makers, such as from within the firm and from suppliers, customers, and competitors. We examine (a) what are the empirically important sources of knowledge flows? (b) to what extent do such flows contribute to TFP growth? (c) do such flows constitute a spillover of free knowledge? (d) how do such flows correspond to suggested spillover sources, such as multinational or R&D presence? We find that: (a) the main sources of knowledge are competitors; suppliers; and plants that belong to the same business group ; (b) these three flows together account for about 50% of TFP growth; (c) the main "free" information flow spillover is from competitors; and (d) multinational presence contributes to this spillover.
    JEL: F23 O47 O57
    Date: 2008–04
  9. By: David Dickinson (Department of Economics - Appalachian State University); Marie-Claire Villeval (GATE - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS : UMR5824 - Université Lumière - Lyon II - Ecole Normale Supérieure Lettres et Sciences Humaines)
    Abstract: Agency theory assumes that tighter monitoring by the principal should motivate agents to increase their effort, whereas the “crowding-out” literature suggests that the opposite may occur. These two assertions are not necessarily contradictory provided that the nature of the employment relationship is taken into account (Frey 1993). Results from controlled laboratory experiments show that many principals engage in costly monitoring, and most agents react to the disciplining effect of monitoring by increasing effort. However, we also find some evidence that effort is crowded out when monitoring is above a certain threshold. We identify that both interpersonal principal/agent links and concerns for the distribution of output payoff are important for the emergence of this crowding-out effect.
    Keywords: principal-agent theory ; monitoring ; crowding-out ; motivation ; real effort experiment
    Date: 2008

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