nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2022‒12‒19
four papers chosen by
Patrick Kampkötter
Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

  1. The Big Three and Board Gender Diversity: The Effectiveness of Shareholder Voice By Todd A. Gormley; Vishal K. Gupta; David A. Matsa; Sandra C. Mortal; Lukai Yang
  2. Job Changing Frequency and Experimental Decisions: A Field Study of Migrant Workers in the Manufacturing Industry By Li, Lingfang (Ivy); Wu, Yuting; Zhu, Xun; Chu, Rongwei; Hung, Iris
  3. Does Working from Home Work? A Natural Experiment From Lockdowns By Shen, Lucas
  4. How Substitutable Are Workers? Evidence from Worker Deaths By Jäger, Simon; Heining, Jörg

  1. By: Todd A. Gormley; Vishal K. Gupta; David A. Matsa; Sandra C. Mortal; Lukai Yang
    Abstract: In 2017, “The Big Three” institutional investors launched campaigns to increase gender diversity on corporate boards. We estimate that their campaigns led American corporations to add at least 2.5 times as many female directors in 2019 as they had in 2016. Firms increased diversity by identifying candidates beyond managers’ existing networks and by placing less emphasis on candidates’ executive experience. Firms also promoted more female directors to key board positions, indicating firms’ responses went beyond tokenism. Our results highlight index investors’ ability to effectuate broad-based governance changes and the important impact of investor buy-in in increasing corporate-leadership diversity.
    JEL: G34 J71 M12 M14
    Date: 2022–11
  2. By: Li, Lingfang (Ivy); Wu, Yuting; Zhu, Xun; Chu, Rongwei; Hung, Iris
    Abstract: Migrant workers form a very important part of the labor force in the economic development of many countries. Their turnover decisions may affect the stability of the performance of manufacturing industries. It is important to understand what kind of individual behavioral preferences may affect their job changing frequency. This study conducts a lab-in-the-field experiment through a large online-to-offline job-matching platform to elicit manufacturing migrant workers’ preferences, such as uncertainty attitudes, intertemporal choices and social preferences, especially difference aversion. The study also surveyed their demographic characteristics and other factors related to their job choices. We find that subjects who are more risk seeking change jobs more frequently. We also use the job record data from the platform and conduct empirical analysis to investigate one explanation of this result: risk-seeking subjects possess more optimistic expectations of potential job opportunities and they are more likely to sample different jobs and thus generate higher job changing frequency. Our findings may help policy-makers and employers design policies or mechanisms to prevent exorbitant job-changing behavior.
    Keywords: migrant worker, preference, job turnover, job search, experiment
    JEL: C91 J01
    Date: 2022
  3. By: Shen, Lucas
    Abstract: Using tracked changes from a large open-source software platform, this paper studies how working from home affected the output of individuals working in tech. The basis of the natural experiment comes from idiosyncratic and state-imposed workplace closures during the COVID-19 pandemic. I find a negative but almost-negligible change in individual-level output of 0.5 percent (standard error of 0.091 percent). Overall, and based on descriptive analyses of the timestamped data, tracked changes in software development cadences approximate regular work activity and provide a useful avenue for future studies of work.
    Keywords: Real-time data; Work from home; GitHub; Labor economics
    JEL: C81 J01 J24 M54 O3
    Date: 2022–11
  4. By: Jäger, Simon (IZA); Heining, Jörg (Institute for Employment Research (IAB), Nuremberg)
    Abstract: We estimate how exogenous worker exits affect firms' demand for incumbent workers and new hires. Drawing on administrative data from Germany, we analyze 34,000 unexpected worker deaths, which, on average, raise the remaining workers' wages and retention probabilities. The average effect masks substantial heterogeneity: Coworkers in the same occupation as the deceased see positive wage effects; coworkers in other occupations experience wage decreases when a high-skilled or specialized worker dies. Our findings imply substantial replacement costs, which are larger in thin markets and when skills are specialized.
    Keywords: hiring costs, human capital specificity, labor market thickness
    JEL: J20 J30 J63
    Date: 2022–11

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