New Economics Papers
on Law and Economics
Issue of 2012‒09‒09
five papers chosen by
Jeong-Joon Lee, Towson University

  1. China’s New Labour Contract Law: State Regulation and Worker Rights in Global Production Networks By Tu Lan; John Pickles
  2. An Analysis of the Electoral Use of Policy on Law and Order by New Labour By Stephen Drinkwater; Colin Jennings
  3. Personal Indebtedness, Spatial Effects and Crime By Stuart McIntyre; Donald Lacombe
  4. The Welfare Cost of Homicides in Brazil: Accounting for Heterogeneity in the Willingness to Pay for Mortality Reductions By Daniel R.C. Cerqueira; Rodrigo R. Soares
  5. Spillovers from Conditional Cash Transfer Programs:Bolsa Família and Crime in Urban Brazil By Laura Chioda; João Manoel Pinho de Mello; Rodrigo R. Soares

  1. By: Tu Lan; John Pickles
    Abstract: Abstract In 2007/2008, the new Labour Contract Law was enacted in China. This law has substantially changed the conditions under which workers and employers can enter into contracts and has had important effects on the ability of workers to shape their conditions of work. This paper outlines the conditions and terms of the 1995 Labour Law and how the new law changes these. It details the legal requirements of the new law and then assesses the consequences of these changes for global buyers sourcing from China and for workers and enterprises in China. In particular, it assesses the differential impacts of the new law on permanent and temporary workers in state-owned and private enterprises, and between private- and public-sector employees.
    Date: 2012
  2. By: Stephen Drinkwater (Wales Institute of Social and Economic, Research, Data and Methods, Swansea University); Colin Jennings (Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde)
    Abstract: There has been much debate regarding the electoral strategy adopted by New Labour in the lead-up to and then during their time in government. This paper addresses the issue from the perspective of left/right and libertarian/authoritarian considerations by examining data on individual attitudes from the British Social Attitudes survey between 1986 and 2009. The analysis indicates that New Labour's move towards the right on economic and public policy was the main driver towards attracting new centrist voters and could thus be labelled 'broadly' populist. The move towards a tougher stance on law and order was more 'narrowly' populist in that it was used more to minimise the reduction in support from Labour's traditional base on the left than to attract new votes.
    Keywords: New Labour, electoral strategy, law and order
    JEL: D72 K00
    Date: 2012–07
  3. By: Stuart McIntyre (Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde); Donald Lacombe (Regional Research Institute, West Virginia University,)
    Abstract: There is a long and detailed history of attempts to understand what causes crime. One of the most prominent strands of this literature has sought to better understand the relationship between economic conditions and crime. Following Becker (1968), the economic argument is that in an attempt to maintain consumption in the face of unemployment, people may resort to sources of illicit income. In a similar manner, we might expect ex-ante, that increases in the level of personal indebtedness would be likely to provide similar incentives to engage in criminality. In this paper we seek to understand the spatial pattern of property and theft crimes using a range of socioeconomic variables, including data on the level of personal indebtedness.
    Keywords: Spatial Econometrics, Crime, Personal Debt, Economic Conditions
    JEL: R1 K42 C11 C21
    Date: 2012–05
  4. By: Daniel R.C. Cerqueira (IPEA); Rodrigo R. Soares (Department of Economics PUC-Rio)
    Abstract: This paper estimates the health dimension of the welfare cost of homicides in Brazil incorporating age, gender, educational, and regional heterogeneities. We use the marginal willingness to pay approach from the “value of life” literature to assign monetary values to the welfare cost of increased mortality due to violence. The results indicate that the present discounted value of the welfare cost of homicides in Brazil corresponds to roughly 78% of the GDP or, measured in terms of yearly flow, 2.3%. The analysis also indicates that reliance on aggregate data to perform such calculations, without taking into account the relevant dimensions of heterogeneity, can lead to biases of the order of 20% in the estimated social cost of violence
    Date: 2012–08
  5. By: Laura Chioda (World Bank); João Manoel Pinho de Mello (Department of Economics PUC-Rio); Rodrigo R. Soares (Department of Economics PUC-Rio)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programs on crime. Making use of a unique dataset combining detailed school characteristics with time and geo-referenced crime information from the city of São Paulo, Brazil, we estimate the contemporaneous effect of the Bolsa Família program on crime. We address the endogeneity of CCT coverage by exploiting the 2008 expansion of the program to adolescents aged 16 and 17. We construct an instrument that combines the timing of expansion and the initial demographic composition of schools to identify plausibly exogenous variations in the number of children covered by Bolsa Família. We find a robust and significant negative impact of Bolsa Família coverage on crime. The evidence suggests that the main effect works through increased household income or changed peer group, rather than from incapacitation from time spent in school
    Date: 2012–08

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