nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2014‒08‒16
five papers chosen by
Tommaso Reggiani
Universität zu Köln

  1. The Performance Pay Premium: How Big Is It and Does It Affect Wage Dispersion? By Bryson, Alex; Forth, John; Stokes, Lucy
  2. "The Biocultural Origins of Human Capital Formation" By Oded Galor; Marc Klemp
  3. Taxing top earners: a human capital perspective By Badel, Alejandro; Huggett, Mark
  4. Publish or Perish? Incentives and Careers in Italian Academia By Checchi, Daniele; De Fraja, Gianni; Verzillo, Stefano
  5. Social Beliefs And Learning Motivation: Role Of Organizational Justice By Olga A. Gulevich

  1. By: Bryson, Alex (National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)); Forth, John (National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)); Stokes, Lucy (National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR))
    Abstract: Using nationally representative linked employer-employee data we find one-quarter of employees in Britain are paid for performance. The log hourly wage gap between performance pay and fixed pay employees is .36 points. This falls to .15 log points after controlling for observable demographic, job and workplace characteristics. It falls still further to .10 log points when comparing "like" employees in the same workplace, indicating that performance pay contracts are used in higher paying workplaces. The premium rises markedly as one moves up the wage distribution: it is seven times higher at the 90th percentile than it is at the 10th percentile in the wage distribution (.42 log points compared to .06 log points).
    Keywords: wages, wage inequality, performance pay, bonuses
    JEL: J33
    Date: 2014–07
  2. By: Oded Galor; Marc Klemp
    Abstract: This research explores the biocultural origins of human capital formation. It presents the first evidence that moderate fecundity was conducive for long-run reproductive success within the human species. Exploiting an extensive genealogy record for nearly half a million individuals in Quebec during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the study traces the number of descendants of early inhabitants in the subsequent four generations. Using the time interval between the date of marriage and the first live birth as a measure of reproductive capacity, the research establishes that while a higher fecundity is associated with a larger number of children, an intermediate level maximizes long-run reproductive success. The finding further indicates that the optimal level of fecundity was below the population median, suggesting that the forces of natural selection favored individuals with a lower level of fecundity. The research lends credence to the hypothesis that during the Malthusian epoch, natural selection favored individuals with a larger predisposition towards child quality, contributing to human capital formation, the onset of the demographic transition and the evolution of societies from an epoch of stagnation to sustained economic growth.
    Keywords: Demography, Evolution, Human Capital Formation, Natural Selection, Fecundity, Quantity-Quality Trade-O?, Long-Run Reproductive Success
    Date: 2014
  3. By: Badel, Alejandro (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis); Huggett, Mark (Georgetown University)
    Abstract: We assess the consequences of substantially increasing the marginal tax rate on U.S. top earners using a human capital model. The top of the model Laffer curve occurs at a 53 percent top tax rate. Tax revenues and the tax rate at the top of the Laffer curve are smaller compared to an otherwise similar model that ignores the possibility of skill change in response to a tax reform. We also show that if one applies the methods used by Diamond and Saez (2011) to provide quantitative guidance for setting the tax rate on top earners to model data then the resulting tax rate exceeds the tax rate at the top of the model Laffer curve.
    Keywords: Human Capital; Marginal Tax Rates; Inequality; Laffer Curve
    JEL: D91 E21 H2 J24
    Date: 2014–07–23
  4. By: Checchi, Daniele (University of Milan); De Fraja, Gianni (University of Nottingham); Verzillo, Stefano (University of Milan)
    Abstract: We derive a theoretical model of effort in the presence of career concern based on the multi-unit all-pay auction, and closely inspired by the Italian academic market. In this model, the number of applicants, the number of new posts, and the relative importance of the determinants of promotion determine academics' effort. Because of the specific characteristics of Italian universities, where incentives operate only through promotion, and where all appointment panels are drawn from strictly separated and relatively narrow scientific sectors, the model fits well Italian academia, and we test it in a newly constructed dataset which collects the journal publications of all Italian academics working in universities. We find that individual researchers respond to incentives in the manner predicted by the theoretical model: more capable researchers respond to increases in the importance of the measurable determinants of promotion and in the competitiveness of the scientific sector by exerting more effort; less able researchers do the opposite.
    Keywords: career concerns, applied auction theory, publications, academic job market, nepotism
    JEL: D44 I23 I21 M51
    Date: 2014–07
  5. By: Olga A. Gulevich (National Research University Higher School of Economics)
    Abstract: This study explored the relation between social beliefs, organizational justice evaluation, and learning motivation. Three hypotheses were tested. Hypothesis 1 suggested that justice evaluation is negatively related to amotivation and positively related to intrinsic learning motivation. According to Hypothesis 2, dangerous and jungle world beliefs are positively related to amotivation and negatively related to intrinsic learning motivation. Hypothesis 3 suggested that the relation between social beliefs and learning motivation is moderated by organizational justice evaluation. Participants were 895 first and fourth year students of four Russian universities. They completed the ‘Dangerous World Beliefs Scale’, ‘Jungle Word Beliefs Scale’, ‘Organizational Justice Scale’ and ‘Academic Motivation Scale’. The results supported Hypotheses 1 and 2, but not Hypothesis 3.
    Keywords: self-determination theory, learning motivation, organizational justice, dangerous world belief, jungle world belief
    JEL: Z
    Date: 2014

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