nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2014‒09‒29
twenty papers chosen by
Tommaso Reggiani
Universität zu Köln

  1. Overtime Working and Contract Efficiency By Hart, Robert A; Ma, Yue
  2. The effect of personality traits on subject choice and performance in high school By Silvia Mendolia; Ian Walker
  3. Brain Drain or Gain? The Structure of Production, Emigration and Growth By Inklaar, Robert Christiaan; Papakonstantinou, Marianna
  4. Managerial Optimism and Debt Contract Design: The Case of Syndicated Loans By Adam, Tim R.; Burg, Valentin; Scheinert, Tobias; Streitz, Daniel
  5. The Spillover Effects of Monitoring: A Field Experiment. By Belot, Michele; Schroeder, Marina
  6. Multitasking Incentives and Biases in Subjective Performance Evaluation By Takahashi, Shingo; Owan, Hideo; Tsuru, Tsuyoshi; Uehara, Katsuhito
  7. The role of participatory management in fostering job satisfaction among public administration employees By Miodraga Stefanovska-Petkovska; Marjan Bojadziev; Vesna Velikj Stefanovska
  8. Competition and Social Identity in the Workplace: Evidence from a Chinese Textile Firm By Takao Kato; Pian Shu
  9. Inequality in the risk of job loss between young and prime-age workers: Can it be explained by human capital or structural factors? By Anna Baranowska-Rataj; Iga Magda
  10. Turkish Middle Income Trap and Less Skilled Human Capital By Gokhan Yilmaz
  11. Time for Helping By Anastasia Danilov; Timo Vogelsang
  12. Sickness Absende and Works Councils - Evidence from German Individual and Linked Employer-Employee Data By Daniel Arnold; Tobias Brändle; Laszlo Goerke
  13. Enrollment and degree completion in higher education without ex ante admission standards By Koen DECLERCQ; Frank VERBOVEN
  14. The Cyclical Behavior of Unemployment and Vacancies with Loss of Skills during Unemployment By Victor Ortego-Marti
  15. Emotional and Social Intelligence and Leadership Development in the Higher Education. An exploratory study By Fabrizio Gerli; Sara Bonesso; Anna Comacchio; Claudio Pizzi
  16. Returns to Active Management: The Case of Hedge Funds By Kazemi, Maziar; Islamaj, Ergys
  17. Productivity spillovers of organization capital By Inklaar, Robert Christiaan; Chen, Wen
  18. Adolescent Steroid Use and Intercollegiate Athletic Incentives By Brad R. Humphreys; Jane Ruseski
  19. Learning from Local Practices : Improving Student Performance in West Bank and Gaza By Noah Yarrow; Husein Abdul-Hamid; Manal Quota; Ernesto Cuadra
  20. Optimal Sales Contracts with Withdrawal Rights By Daniel Krähmer; Roland Strausz; Melanie;

  1. By: Hart, Robert A; Ma, Yue
    Abstract: We present a wage-hours contract designed to minimize costly turnover given investments in specific training combined with firm and worker information asymmetries. It may be optimal for the parties to work ‘long hours’ remunerated at premium rates for guaranteed overtime hours. Based on British plant and machine operatives, we test three predictions. First, trained workers with longer tenure are more likely to work overtime. Second, hourly overtime pay exceeds the value of marginal product while the basic hourly wage is less than the value of marginal product. Third, the basic hourly wage is negatively related to the overtime premium.
    Keywords: Paid overtime, wage-hours contract, plant and machine operatives,
    Date: 2013
  2. By: Silvia Mendolia; Ian Walker
    Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between personality traits in adolescence and performance in high school using a large and recent cohort study. In particular, we investigate the impact of locus of control, self-esteem, and work ethics at age 15, on test scores at age 16, and on subject choices and subsequent performance at age 17-18. In particular, individuals with external locus of control or with low levels of self-esteem seem less likely to have good performance in test scores at age 16 and to pursue further studies at 17-18, especially in mathematics or science. We use matching methods to control for a rich set of adolescent and family characteristics and we find that personality traits do affect study choices and performance in test scores - particularly in mathematics and science. We explore the robustness of our results using the methodology proposed by Altonji et al. (2005) that consists in making hypotheses about the correlation between the unobservables that determine test scores and subjects’ choices and the unobservables that influence personality.
    Date: 2014
  3. By: Inklaar, Robert Christiaan; Papakonstantinou, Marianna (Groningen University)
    Abstract: There is growing evidence that the opportunity to emigrate stimulates human capital formation, leading to a net increase in human capital, a ?brain gain? rather than a ?brain drain?. In this paper, we present evidence that ?brain gain? is more widespread than currently thought. We find that countries with higher emigration rates show faster growth in knowledge-intensive manufacturing industries, implying that migration leads to increases in human capital. We find that more countries benefit than previously found, in part, because of increases in not only the number of high-skilled but also of medium-skilled workers.
    Date: 2014
  4. By: Adam, Tim R.; Burg, Valentin; Scheinert, Tobias; Streitz, Daniel
    Abstract: We examine the impact of managerial optimism on the inclusion of performance-pricing provisions in syndicated loan contracts (PSD). Optimistic managers may view PSD as a relatively cheap form of financing given their upwardly biased expectations about the firm’s future cash flow. Indeed, we find that optimistic managers are more likely to issue PSD, and choose contracts with greater performance-pricing sensitivity than rational managers. Consistent with their biased expectations, firms with optimistic managers perform worse than firms with rational managers after issuing PSD. Our results indicate that behavioral aspects can affect contract design in the market for syndicated loans.
    Keywords: Optimism Bias; Performance-Sensitive Debt; Debt Contracting; Syndicated Loans
    JEL: G02 G30 G31 G32
    Date: 2014–07–23
  5. By: Belot, Michele; Schroeder, Marina
    Abstract: We provide field experimental evidence of the effects of monitoring in a context where productivity is multi-dimensional and only one dimension is monitored and incentivised. We hire students to do a job for us. The job consists of identifying euro coins. We study the effects of monitoring and penalising mistakes on work quality, and evaluate spillovers on non- incentivised dimensions of productivity (punctuality and theft). We .nd that monitoring improves work quality only if incentives are large, but reduces punctuality substantially irrespectively of the size of incentives. Monitoring does not affect theft, with ten per cent of participants stealing overall. Our setting also allows us to disentangle between possible theoretical mechanisms driving the adverse effects of monitoring. Our .ndings are supportive of a reciprocity mechanism, whereby workers retaliate for being distrusted.
    Keywords: counterproductive behaviour, monitoring, experimentment,
    Date: 2013
  6. By: Takahashi, Shingo; Owan, Hideo; Tsuru, Tsuyoshi; Uehara, Katsuhito
    Abstract: Subjective performance evaluation serves as a double-edged sword. While it can mitigate multitasking agency problems, it also opens the door to evaluators’ biases, resulting in lower job satisfaction and a higher rate of worker quits. Using the personnel and transaction records of individual sales representatives in a major car sales company in Japan, we provide direct evidence for both sides of subjective performance evaluation: (1) the sensitivity of evaluations to sales performance declines with the marginal productivity of hard-to-measure tasks, and (2) measures of potential evaluation bias we construct are positively associated with the incidence of worker quits, after correcting for possible endogeneity biases.
    JEL: M52 M55
    Date: 2014–08
  7. By: Miodraga Stefanovska-Petkovska (University American College Skopje); Marjan Bojadziev (University American College Skopje); Vesna Velikj Stefanovska (Institute of Epidemiology and biostatistics, Medical Faculty University)
    Abstract: The concept of job satisfaction has intrigued a debate that has extended outside the academic community and into the business and government sphere. Both academics and public managers agree that the existence of participative management improves job satisfaction of public administration employees. Being challenged with the goal of creating a high-performing, accountable and goal oriented government service, public management professionals have utilized strategic planning and participative management. The goal of this research is to explore the role between participative management and job satisfaction among public administration employees. More specifically, the research investigates the use of participative management by the managers, existence of strategic participatory planning process and the communication between the manager and employees. A total of 532 public administration employees, from four cities in Republic of Macedonia were involved in the survey. The research results from the multiple regression analysis indicate that there is a positive association between positive levels of reported job satisfaction by employees and their reporting of participatory management style and participatory strategic planning processes. In addition the research results suggest that the effectiveness of supervisory communication has a significant effect on the level of reported job satisfaction by the employees. The significance of this research is in its contribution to the understanding of the role of participative management in creating a satisfied public administration workforce. Based on the research results, recommendations will be discussed both for managers of public administration and academic researchers in the relevant field. Both business and government leaders and managers agree that an essential ingredient to organizational success is employee’s job satisfaction (Voon et al, 2010). This can be defined as s a positive or pleasing emotional state from the appraisal of one’s job or experience (Locke, 1976). By affecting the overall performance of the organization, job satisfaction affects the reported levels of job dissatisfaction, absenteeism, grievance expression, tardiness, low morale, high turnover and participatory decision making (Lee and Ahmad, 2009). Taking all of this into account, the shift to participatory management in the public sector is almost inevitable and has long been recognized as a critical ingredient in the creation of a more satisfied public administration workforce (Lichtenstein, 2000). However the review of the relevant literature uncovers that there is limited evidence of how participatory management influences the levels of job satisfaction among employees in the public sector. In addition, participatory management and levels and determinants of job satisfaction among public administration employees in developing countries remain scarce.
    Date: 2014–09
  8. By: Takao Kato (Department of Economics Colgate University); Pian Shu (Harvard Business School, Technology and Operations Management Unit)
    Abstract: We study the impact of social identity on worker competition by exploiting the exogenous variations in workers' origins and the well-documented social divide between urban resident workers and rural migrant workers in large urban Chinese firms. We analyze data on weekly output, individual characteristics, and coworker composition for all weavers in an urban Chinese textile firm between April 2003 and March 2004. The firm's relative performance incentive scheme rewards a worker for outperforming her coworkers. We find that a worker does not act on the monetary incentives to outperform coworkers who share the same social identity, but does aggressively compete against coworkers with a different social identity. Our results highlight the important role of social identity in overcoming self-interest and enhancing intergroup competitions.
    Date: 2013–07
  9. By: Anna Baranowska-Rataj (Institute of Statistics and Demography, Warsaw School of Economics); Iga Magda (Institute of Statistics and Demography, Warsaw School of Economics)
    Abstract: In this paper we identify the determinants of the gap in job stability between young and prime-age workers. Using recently developed decomposition techniques and the panel dimension of data from the Polish Labor Force Survey, we examine to what extent age heterogeneity in job stability is shaped by differences in the composition of young and prime-age workers with respect to individual and job-related characteristics, and to what extent it is driven by different effects of those characteristics on the risk of job separation. Our results show that while differences in education and experience between young and prime-age workers are important, these differences explain only one-third of the gap in job stability. A substantial part of the gap is related to the propensity of young people to work in the most volatile segments of the labor market. Young workers are more likely than prime-age workers to work under a fixed-term contract in a small firm in the private sector, and in an industry that has high rates of both job creation and destruction. Because large numbers of young people have a job in this relatively narrow segment of the labor market, their employment opportunities are very sensitive to changing economic conditions. We also find that the public sector offers prime-age workers a higher level of employment protection than the private sector, but that young people who work at state-owned firms are at higher risk of losing their job than their counterparts who are employed by private firms. This asymmetric effect of public sector employment substantially increases the gap in job stability levels between young and prime-age workers in Poland.
    Keywords: youth; job stability; job separations; structural perspective
    JEL: J21 J24 J63
    Date: 2014
  10. By: Gokhan Yilmaz
    Abstract: This paper reviews the literature on the Middle Income Trap and compares Turkey to the rest of the trapped and non-trapped (non-middle income trapped) countries. We analyze country experiences by focusing on the role of well-designed and high quality education system to avoid the trap. When we compare Turkey’s human capital to human capital in non-trapped countries, we observe that Turkish education system will be critical to break out the trap. An education system that is consistent with development path of the economy could yield both “skilled and high capability human capital” and “innovative and competitive productive capacity” to overcome the trap. Our qualitative analysis also demonstrates that Turkey has not been benefitting from de-agriculturalization sufficiently. Surplus labor coming from agriculture is not being employed in the knowledge intensive manufacturing activities. Moreover, the speed of de-agriculturalization is slow, hence Turkey can’t fully exploit unrepeatable gains of structural transformation. Transferring these agriculture workers into high productivity tradable activities can yield significant labor productivity and per capita income gains.
    Keywords: Economic Growth, Convergence, Middle Income Trap
    JEL: O11 O40
    Date: 2014
  11. By: Anastasia Danilov (University of Cologne); Timo Vogelsang (University of Cologne)
    Abstract: This study investigates whether individuals engage in prosocial behavior when it requires their time but not money. In a lab experiment with rigorous anonymity arrangements, subjects receive their payoff beforehand and can engage in a tedious task to increase the earnings of a passive recipient. We find that individuals work for a significant amount of time.
    Keywords: Laboratory experiment, social preferences, time, opportunity costs, volunteering, altruism
    JEL: C91 D64 J22
    Date: 2014–08–26
  12. By: Daniel Arnold; Tobias Brändle; Laszlo Goerke
    Abstract: Using both household and linked employer-employee data for Germany, we assess the effects of non-union representation in the form of works councils on (1) individual sickness absence rates and (2) a subjective measure of personnel problems due to sickness absence as perceived by a firm's management. We find that the existence of a works council is positively correlated with the incidence and the annual duration of absence. We observe a more pronounced correlation in western Germany which can also be interpreted causally. Further, personnel problems due to absence are more likely to occur in plants with a works council.
    Keywords: Absenteeism, LIAB, personnel problems, sickness absence, SOEP, works councils
    JEL: J53 I18 M54
  13. By: Koen DECLERCQ; Frank VERBOVEN
    Abstract: Many countries organize their higher education system with limited or no ex ante admission standards. They instead rely more heavily on an ex post selection mechanism, based on the students’ performance during higher education. We analyze how a system with ex post selection affects initial enrollment and final degree completion, using a rich dataset for Belgium (region of Flanders). We develop a dynamic discrete choice model of college/university and major choice, where the outcome of the enrollment decision is uncertain. Upon observing past performance, students may decide to continue, reorient to another major, or drop out. We find that ex post student selection is very strong: less than half of the students successfully complete their course work in the first year. Unsuccessful students mainly switch from university to college majors, or from college majors to drop-out. We use the estimates of our model to evaluate the effects of alternative, ex ante admission policies. We find that a suitably designed ex ante screening system (with moderate admission thresholds) can considerably increase degree completion in higher education. A discriminatory screening system for universities only, can raise total degree completion even more, though it implies a shift from university to college degrees.
    Date: 2014–06
  14. By: Victor Ortego-Marti (Department of Economics, University of California Riverside)
    Abstract: This paper studies the cyclical fluctuations in unemployment and vacancies in a search and matching model in which workers lose skills during periods of unemployment. Firms' profits fluctuate more because aggregate productivity affects the economy's human capital level. Moreover, wages for workers with lower levels of human capital are closer to the value of non-market time, leading to more rigid wages. Fluctuations in the vacancy-unemployment ratio are larger than is the case in the baseline search and matching model. For mid-range values of non-market time the improvement is substantial, and the model accounts for most observed labor market fluctuations.
    Keywords: Search and Matching; Unemployment Fluctuations; Unemployment History; Human Capital Depreciation
    JEL: E2
    Date: 2014–09
  15. By: Fabrizio Gerli; Sara Bonesso; Anna Comacchio; Claudio Pizzi
    Abstract: Our study aims to contribute to the literature on leadership development through the lifespan, by providing an empirical evidence of the dynamic processes related to leadership development in early stages. This research advances the understanding on how higher education institutions can introduce a systematic approach to support leadership identity formation and self-regulation as primary outcome of leadership development process, by taking into account that individuals may undertake different developmental trajectories. We suggest that the implementation of the Intentional Change Theory in the academic context, which aims to help students to attain their desired professional future and to increase their self-awareness, could support leadership identity formation. Through the case study of the CaÕ Foscari Competency Centre (CFCC) of University of Venice (Italy), we discuss how the process of early identity formation and regulation of two groups of students, who have expressed a different intent about their job, may differ. Findings show some differences in the values and in the competency portfolio between the two groups of students. These differences suggest two different developmental trajectories of students aiming at an entrepreneurial career and students who expressed a different intent.
    Keywords: Emotional and social intelligence competencies; Intentional change theory; Higher education; Leadership identity formation and self-regulation.
    JEL: I23 J24 M12 M51 M53
    Date: 2014–08
  16. By: Kazemi, Maziar (Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.)); Islamaj, Ergys (Vassar College)
    Abstract: Do more active hedge fund managers generate higher returns than their less active peers? We attempt to answer this question. Using Kalman Filter techniques, we estimate the risk exposure dynamics of a large sample of live and dead equity long-short hedge funds. These estimates are then used to develop a measure of activeness for each hedge fund. Our results show that there exists a nonlinear relationship between activeness and performance. Using raw returns as a measure of performance, it is found that more active funds outperform the less active ones. However, when risk adjusted returns are used to measure performance, we find the opposite results; that is, activeness is inversely related to returns. Still, we find that a few very active managers outperform the moderately active funds and generate higher returns. We conclude that the most active managers use their skills to manage the riskiness of their portfolios and are, therefore, able to provide higher risk adjusted returns. Finally, we find that compared to the least active managers, the most active managers are less homogeneous and, therefore, due diligence is far more important when selecting an active manager.
    Keywords: Hedge funds; Fama-French; active management; dynamic trading
    JEL: G11 G12 G14 G23
    Date: 2014–08–08
  17. By: Inklaar, Robert Christiaan; Chen, Wen (Groningen University)
    Abstract: Investments in organization capital may impact productivity of not just the investing firm but could also spillover to other firms ? like investments in research and development. In this paper, we test whether there are (positive) know-how spillovers and (negative) business-stealing productivity spillovers for a panel of 1266 U.S. manufacturing firms over the period 1982?2011. We only find evidence of negative spillovers on product-market rivals. This implies that firms invest more in organization capital than would be socially optimal and that existing estimates of the importance of organization capital for productivity growth are overstated.
    Date: 2014
  18. By: Brad R. Humphreys (West Virginia University, College of Business and Economics); Jane Ruseski (West Virginia University, College of Business and Economics)
    Abstract: We examine the relationship between college athletic scholarships and adolescent use of performance enhancing drugs. Annually, 4.5 million male high school athletes compete for about 132,000 athletic scholarships o_ered by NCAA Division I and II universities. Estimates from a probit model of self-reported steroid use among US adolescent males using data from the YRBSS suggest each sanction-related athletic scholarship reduction at NCAA institutions in a state increases the probability that high school males in that state report using steroids by 3%. Competition for athletic scholarships generates incentives for adolescent males to improve athletic performance through use of steroids.
    Keywords: steroids, intercollegiate athletics, adolescents, sports
    JEL: I18 L83
    Date: 2014–09
  19. By: Noah Yarrow; Husein Abdul-Hamid; Manal Quota; Ernesto Cuadra
    Keywords: Secondary Education Teaching and Learning Education - Primary Education Education - Education For All Tertiary Education
    Date: 2014–06
  20. By: Daniel Krähmer; Roland Strausz; Melanie;
    Abstract: We study ex post information rents in sequential screening models where the agent receives private ex ante and ex post information. The principal has to pay ex post information rents for preventing the agent to coordinate lies about his ex ante and ex post information. When the agent’s ex ante information is discrete, these rents are positive, whereas they are zero in continuous models. Consequently, full disclosure of ex post information is generally suboptimal. Optimal disclosure rules trade off the benefits from adapting the allocation to better information against the effect that more information aggravates truth-telling.
    Keywords: Sequential screening, dynamic mechanism design, participation constraints, Mirrlees approach
    JEL: D82 H57
    Date: 2014–09

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