nep-lma New Economics Papers
on Labor Markets - Supply, Demand, and Wages
Issue of 2019‒09‒09
24 papers chosen by
Joseph Marchand
University of Alberta

  1. STEM Careers and the Changing Skill Requirements of Work By Deming, David; Noray, Kadeem L.
  2. Lying and Shirking Under Oath By Nicolas Jacquemet; Alexander James; Stéphane Luchini; James Murphy; Jason F. Shogren
  3. Effects of labour and product market regulation on worker flows: evidence for the euro area using micro data By Anderton, Robert; Di Lupidio, Benedetta
  4. Gender Differences in Political Career Progression: Evidence from U.S. Elections By Brown, Ryan; Mansour, Hani; O'Connell, Stephen D.; Reeves, James
  5. Do Pension Benefits Accelerate Cognitive Decline? Evidence from Rural China By Nikolov, Plamen; Adelman, Alan
  6. Long-Term Consequences of Group Work in Japanese Public Elementary Schools By Kohei Kubota; Takahiro Ito; Fumio Ohtake
  7. Rigid Wages and Contracts: Time- versus State-Dependent Wages in the Netherlands By Grajales Olarte, A.; Uras, Burak; Vellekoop, N.
  8. Education and Prosocial Behavior: Evidence from Time Use Survey By Akar, Betul; Akyol, Pelin; Okten, Cagla
  9. Those Who Can't Sort, Steal: Caste, Occupational Mobility, and Rent-Seeking in Rural India By Lawson, Nicholas; Spears, Dean
  10. Running the Risk of an Injury in the NFL: Short-Run and Career Consequences By Keefer, Quinn; Kniesner, Thomas J.
  11. Long-Run Effects of Dynamically Assigned Treatments: a New Methodology and an Evaluation of Training Effects on Earnings By van den Berg, Gerard J.; Vikström, Johan
  12. Individual Consequences of Occupational Decline By Edin, Per-Anders; Evans, Tiernan; Graetz, Georg; Hernnäs, Sofia; Michaels, Guy
  13. Learning Management through Matching: A Field Experiment Using Mechanism Design By Abebe, Girum; Fafchamps, Marcel; Koelle, Michael; Quinn, Simon
  14. Creative Destruction, Social Security Uptake and Union Networks By Dale-Olsen, Harald
  15. The Impact of Exposure to Missionaries on the English Language Proficiency and Earnings of Immigrants in the USA By Larsen, Nicholas; Chiswick, Barry R.
  16. Granular Search, Market Structure, and Wages By Jarosch, Gregor; Nimczik, Jan Sebastian; Sorkin, Isaac
  17. Skills-Displacing Technological Change and Its Impact on Jobs: Challenging Technological Alarmism? By McGuinness, Seamus; Pouliakas, Konstantinos; Redmond, Paul
  18. Raising the Overtime Premium and Reducing the Standard Workweek: Short-Run Impacts on U.S. Manufacturing By Sagyndykova, Galiya; Oaxaca, Ronald L.
  19. Formal Employment and Organized Crime: Regression Discontinuity Evidence from Colombia By Gaurav Khanna; Carlos Medina; Anant Nyshadham; Jorge A. Tamayo
  20. Reference Points for Retirement Behavior: Evidence from German Pension Discontinuities By Arthur Seibold
  21. Days Worked and Seasonality Patterns of Work in Eighteenth Century Denmark By Jensen, Peter Sandholt; Radu, Cristina Victoria; Sharp, Paul Richard
  22. The Impact of High-Performance Work Systems on Employees: A Sectoral Comparison By White, Michael; Bryson, Alex
  23. The Short Term Impact of a Productive Asset Transfer in Families with Child Labor: Experimental Evidence from the Philippines By Eric V. Edmonds; Caroline B. Theoharides
  24. What Limits College Success? A Review and Further Analysis of Holzer and Baum's 'Making College Work' By Oreopoulos, Philip

  1. By: Deming, David (Harvard Graduate School of Education and Harvard Kennedy School); Noray, Kadeem L. (Harvard University)
    Abstract: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) jobs are a key contributor to economic growth and national competitiveness. Yet STEM workers are perceived to be in short supply. This paper shows that the “STEM shortage†phenomenon is explained by technological change, which introduces new job skills and makes old ones obsolete. We find that the initially high economic return to applied STEM degrees declines by more than 50 percent in the first decade of working life. This coincides with a rapid exit of college graduates from STEM occupations. Using detailed job vacancy data, we show that STEM jobs change especially quickly over time, leading to flatter age-earnings profiles as the skills of older cohorts became obsolete. Our findings highlight the importance of technology-specific skills in explaining life-cycle returns to education, and show that STEM jobs are the leading edge of technology diffusion in the labor market.
    JEL: J24
    Date: 2019–08
  2. By: Nicolas Jacquemet (Paris School of Economics, Université de Lorraine (BETA)); Alexander James (Department of Economics, University of Alaska Anchorage); Stéphane Luchini (Aix-Marseille University (Aix-Marseille School of Economics), CNRS and EHESS, Centre de la Vielle Charité); James Murphy (Department of Economics, University of Alaska Anchorage and Economic Science Institute, Chapman University); Jason F. Shogren (Department of Economics, University of Wyoming)
    Abstract: This study explores whether an oath to honesty can reduce both shirking and lying among crowd-sourced internet workers. Using a classic coin-ip experiment, we rst show that a substantial majority of Mechanical Turk workers both shirk and lie when reporting the number of heads ipped. We then demonstrate lying can be reduced by rst asking each worker to swear voluntarily on his or her honor to tell the truth in subsequent economic decisions. The oath, however, did not reduce shirking as measured by time- at-coin-ip-task, although it did increase the time they spent answering a demographic survey. Conditional on response, MTurk shirkers and liars were less likely to agree to an ex post honesty oath. Our results suggest oaths may help elicit more truthful behavior in on-line crowd-sourced environments.
    Keywords: Experimental Economics; Honesty; Intrinsic Costs; Field Experiment; Solemn Oath; Mechanical Turk; MTurk; Lying; Shirking; Labor economics
    JEL: D91 C81 C90 C93 D01 D82 J20 J30 J40
    Date: 2019
  3. By: Anderton, Robert; Di Lupidio, Benedetta
    Abstract: Macroeconomic studies suggest that employment-output elasticities in the euro area increased during the recovery from the crisis, especially in those countries that implemented reforms. In this paper, we use micro (individual-level) data from the Eurostat Labour Force Survey to investigate whether a similar change can be found at the micro level. We estimate the probabilities of worker flows across employment and unemployment in euro area countries during the period 2000-2015 in response to GDP growth, structural reforms and individual socio-demographic characteristics. We find evidence of a higher responsiveness of individual worker flows to output changes after the crisis, particularly for a group of countries which implemented significant reforms during the crisis. Indicators of labour and product market rigidities provide a statistically significant direct indication that such increased responsiveness may be explained by reforms. Finally, our results are not only driven by workers hired on temporary contracts, but also apply to permanent contracts. JEL Classification: J21, J24, C25, K31
    Keywords: Great Recession, individual-level worker flows, labour market regulations, linear probability model, structural reforms
    Date: 2019–09
  4. By: Brown, Ryan (University of Colorado Denver); Mansour, Hani (University of Colorado Denver); O'Connell, Stephen D. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology); Reeves, James (University of Michigan)
    Abstract: This paper establishes the presence of a substantial gender gap in the relationship between state legislature service and the subsequent pursuit of a Congressional career. The empirical approach uses a sample of mixed-gender elections to compare the differential political career progression of women who closely win versus closely lose a state legislature election relative to an analogous impact for men who closely win or lose a state legislature election. We find that the effect of serving a state legislative term on the likelihood of running for a Congressional seat is twice as large for men as women, and its effect on winning a Congressional race is five times larger for men than women. These gaps emerge early in legislators' careers, widen over time, and are seen alongside a higher propensity for female state legislators to recontest state legislature seats. This gender gap in advancing to Congress among state legislators is not generated by gender differences in previously accumulated political experience, political party affiliation, or constituency characteristics. After investigating several explanations, we conclude that the gender gap in political career progression is consistent with the existence of a glass ceiling in politics.
    Keywords: elections, discrimination, politicians, gender gap
    JEL: J16 J24 D72 J71
    Date: 2019–08
  5. By: Nikolov, Plamen (State University of New York); Adelman, Alan (State University of New York)
    Abstract: Higher life expectancy and rapidly aging populations have led to the introduction of pension programs in developing countries in the last two decades. Using the introduction of a new public policy in China, we estimate the effects of pension benefits on individual cognition, measured by episodic memory and intact mental status, among individuals ages 60 and above. We find large and significant negative effects of the provision of pension benefits on cognitive functioning among the elderly. We find the largest effect of the program on delayed recall, a measure implicated in neurobiological research as an important predictor of the onset of dementia. We show that the program leads to more negative impacts among the female sample. Our findings support the mental retirement hypothesis that decreased mental activity results in atrophy of cognitive skills. We show that retirement plays a significant role in explaining cognitive decline at older ages.
    Keywords: life-cycle, cognitive functioning, cognition, aging, health, mental retirement, middle-income countries, developing countries, China
    JEL: J14 H55 H75 J26 J24 D91 O12 N35 O10
    Date: 2019–08
  6. By: Kohei Kubota (Faculty of Commerce, Chuo University); Takahiro Ito (Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies, Kobe University); Fumio Ohtake (Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University)
    Abstract: Using original web survey data, this study investigates the long-term consequences of the experience of group work, which is a common teaching practice. We examined the convention in the context of Japanese public elementary schools, which are considered to be less susceptible to self-selection bias, in order to improve on the research conditions of previous studies. The regression results show that the experience of group work is negatively associated with annual income and financial assets. Furthermore, we find that the experience of group work does not relate to well-being and life satisfaction and that those who experienced group work attach higher satisfaction to human relationships and less satisfaction to household economic status. From the insignificant association between group work and well-being/whole life satisfaction, it may be interpreted that the positive association with satisfaction related to human relationships offsets the negative association with satisfaction regarding one fs present economic status. We also show that experience of group work is negatively associated with cognitive skills but is positively associated with altruistic and positive reciprocal behavior.
    Keywords: Teaching practice, Annual income, Well-being, Cognitive skills, Non-cognitive skills
    JEL: D83 I21 I31 Z13
    Date: 2019–08
  7. By: Grajales Olarte, A. (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research); Uras, Burak (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research); Vellekoop, N. (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research)
    Abstract: We study nominal wage rigidity in the Netherlands using administrative data, which has three key features: (1) high-frequency (monthly), (2) high-quality (administrative records), and (3) high coverage (the universe of workers and the universe of firms). We find wage rigidity patterns in the data that are similar to wage behavior documented for other European countries. In particular we find that the hazard function has two spikes, one at 12 months and another one at 24 months and wage changes have time and state dependency components. As a novel and important piece of evidence we also uncover substantial heterogeneity in the frequency of wage changes due to explicit terms of the labor contract. In particular, contracts featuring flexible hours, such as on-call contracts, exhibit a higher probability of a change in the contract wage compared to fixed hour contracts. Once we split the sample based on contract characteristics, we also find that the response of wage changes to the time and state component is heterogeneous across different type of contracts - with relatively more downward adjustments in flexible-hour contract wages in response to aggregate unemployment.
    Keywords: wage rigidity; microdata; time dependency; state dependency; flexible-hour contracts
    JEL: E24 J31
    Date: 2019
  8. By: Akar, Betul (Bilkent University); Akyol, Pelin (Bilkent University); Okten, Cagla (Bilkent University)
    Abstract: We use the extension of compulsory education from five to eight years in Turkey as an instrument for educational attainment to investigate the causal effects of education on prosocial behavior by utilizing Turkish Time Use Survey data. Ours is the first paper that investigates the causal effect of education on volunteering. We find that the education reform increased the education levels significantly, and increased education had a causal negative and significant impact on prosocial behavior of men as time spent in volunteering and helping others decreased. We also investigate the causal channels through which education decreases prosocial behavior. We find that schooling increased the likelihood of earning higher wages and work hours, which suggests that men substituted hours worked for time spent in prosocial activity as a result of an exogenous increase in their education levels. Our findings also suggest that education might have enhanced individualism and self-centrism as we find that time spent in leisure and sport activity increased. We do not find any significant effects of education on female prosocial behavior in Turkey, where female labor force participation rate at 32 percent has remained low and stagnant across the years.
    Keywords: prosocial behavior, volunteering, helping, education, externalities
    JEL: I21 D01 D64
    Date: 2019–08
  9. By: Lawson, Nicholas (Princeton University); Spears, Dean (University of Texas at Austin)
    Abstract: Three important features of Indian labor markets enduringly coexist: rent-seeking, occupational immobility, and caste. These facts are puzzling, given theories that predict static, equilibrium social inequality without conflict. Our model explains these facts as an equilibrium outcome. Some people switch caste-associated occupations for an easier source of rents, rather than for productivity. This undermines trust between castes and shuts down occupational mobility, which further encourages rent-seeking due to an inability of workers to sort into occupations. We motivate our contribution with novel stylized facts exploiting a unique survey question on casteism in India, which we show is associated with rent-seeking.
    Keywords: caste, occupational mobility, rent-seeking, India, labour markets in developing countries
    JEL: O15 J71 J24 J47
    Date: 2019–08
  10. By: Keefer, Quinn (California State University San Marcos); Kniesner, Thomas J. (Claremont Graduate University)
    Abstract: Similar to other workers in industrial settings NFL running backs can choose to provide additional work effort with possible negative health consequences. We find that the most informative measure for running backs is yards gained after contact, which not only increases total rushing yards but also increases injuries that can cause subsequent lost income due to future games missed. We econometrically examine the decisions running backs reveal in trading off injury risk against total yards gained and salary in the short run and how the tradeoff appears in the longer run where career length considerations come into play. Our estimates reveal subtle nonlinearities and interpersonal heterogeneity in risky effort and the associated short and long run injury risk and economic payoffs.
    Keywords: non-fatal injuries, NFL, running backs, risky effort, rate-of-return, career length, Poisson regression, Arellano-Bond model, panel data, fixed effects
    JEL: C23
    Date: 2019–08
  11. By: van den Berg, Gerard J. (University of Bristol); Vikström, Johan (IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy)
    Abstract: We propose and implement a new method to estimate treatment effects in settings where individuals need to be in a certain state (e.g. unemployment) to be eligible for a treatment,treatments may commence at different points in time, and the outcome of interest is realized after the individual left the initial state. An example concerns the effect of training on earnings in subsequent employment. Any evaluation needs to take into account that some of those who are not trained at a certain time in unemployment will leave unemployment before training while others will be trained later. We are interested in effects of the treatment at a certain elapsed duration compared to “no treatment at any subsequent duration”. We prove identification under unconfoundedness and propose inverse probability weighting estimators. A key feature is that weights given to outcome observations of non-treated depend on the remaining time in the initial state. We study earnings effects of WIA training in the US and long-run effects of a training program for unemployed workers in Sweden. Estimates are positive and sizeable, exceeding those obtained by using common static methods, and suggesting a reappraisal of training.
    Keywords: Treatment effects; dynamic treatment evaluation; program evaluation; duration analysis; matching; unemployment; employment.
    JEL: E24
    Date: 2019–08–14
  12. By: Edin, Per-Anders (Uppsala University); Evans, Tiernan (London School of Economics.); Graetz, Georg (Uppsala University); Hernnäs, Sofia (Uppsala University); Michaels, Guy (London School of Economics)
    Abstract: What are the earnings and employment losses that workers suffer when demand for their occupations declines? To answer this question we combine forecasts on occupational employment changes, which allow us to identify unanticipated declines; administrative data on the population of Swedish workers, spanning several decades; and a highly detailed occupational classification. We find that, compared to similar workers, those facing occupational decline lost about 2-5 percent of mean cumulative earnings from 1986-2013. But workers at the bottom of their occupations’ initial earnings distributions suffered considerably larger losses. These earnings losses are partly accounted for by reduced employment, and increased unemployment and retraining.
    Keywords: Technological change; Occupations; Inequality;
    JEL: J24 J62 O33
    Date: 2019–08–27
  13. By: Abebe, Girum (Policy Studies Institute); Fafchamps, Marcel (Stanford University); Koelle, Michael (University of Oxford); Quinn, Simon (University of Oxford)
    Abstract: We place young professionals into established firms to shadow middle managers. Using random assignment into program participation, we find positive average effects on wage employment, but no average effect on the likelihood of self-employment. We match individuals to firms using a deferred-acceptance algorithm, and show how this allows us to identify heterogeneous treatment effects by firm and intern characteristics. We find striking heterogeneity in self-employment effects, and show that some assignment mechanisms can substantially outperform random matching in generating employment and income effects. These results demonstrate the potential for matching algorithms to improve the design of field experiments.
    Keywords: propensity score, field experiments, management practices, self-employment, causal inference
    JEL: J24 J64
    Date: 2019–08
  14. By: Dale-Olsen, Harald (Institute for Social Research, Oslo)
    Abstract: Does the creative destruction induced by unions entail increased social security uptake? Creative destruction implies the closures of less productive workplaces, and if the regional benefits from this process is not large enough, the displacements caused by workplace closures cause increased social security uptake. In this paper we apply a shift-share approach and historical unionisation data from 1918 to study the impact of regional unionisation changes in Norway on regional social security uptake during the period 2003-2012. As regional unionisation increases, inflows to regional unemployment and disability decrease, but the outflow to retirement increases.
    Keywords: trade unions, creative destruction, unemployment, disability insurance, retirement
    JEL: D24 J30 J51
    Date: 2019–08
  15. By: Larsen, Nicholas; Chiswick, Barry R.
    Abstract: Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore how potential exposure to missionary activity impacts both English language proficiency and labor market earnings of male and female immigrants to the United States. Design/Methodology/Approach: This study uses the pooled files of the American Community Survey (2005-09). To estimate the relationship between the missionary activity of both Protestants and Catholics on an immigrant’s English language proficiency using a linear probability model and their labor market earnings using the human capital earnings function that is estimated with an ordinary least squares model. Among other relevant variables, the analysis controls for the colonial heritage of the immigrant’s country of origin. Findings: Overall, and within colonial heritages, our results indicate that male and female immigrants from countries with a higher concentration of Protestant missionaries tend to exhibit higher levels of English language proficiency and earnings, and those from countries with a greater concentration of Catholic missionaries exhibit lower levels of both, compared to countries with lower concentrations of missionaries. Furthermore, a greater proficiency in English enhances earnings. One of the important implications of the findings in this paper is that a “missionary variable” often used in other studies is too aggregate and may mask important findings because of strikingly different effects of Protestant and Catholic activities and characteristics of the missionaries. Originality/value: This study explores for the first time how, through a missionary concentration variable, potential exposure to missionary activity impacts the English language proficiency and earnings of immigrants.
    Keywords: Immigrants,Protestant,Catholic,Missionaries,Earnings,Schooling,English Language,Proficiency,American Community Survey
    JEL: F22 J61 J31 J24
    Date: 2019
  16. By: Jarosch, Gregor (Princeton University); Nimczik, Jan Sebastian (European School of Management and Technology (ESMT)); Sorkin, Isaac (Stanford University)
    Abstract: We build a model where firm size is a source of labor market power. The key mechanism is that a granular employer can eliminate its own vacancies from a worker's outside option in the wage bargain. Hence, a granular employer does not compete with itself. We show how wages depend on employment concentration and then use the model to quantify the effects of granular market power. In Austrian micro-data, we find that granular market power depresses wages by about ten percent and can explain 40 percent of the observed decline in the labor share from 1997 to 2015. Mergers decrease competition for workers and reduce wages even at non-merging firms.
    Keywords: market power, labor share, search and matching
    JEL: J31 J42
    Date: 2019–08
  17. By: McGuinness, Seamus (Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin); Pouliakas, Konstantinos (European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop)); Redmond, Paul (ESRI, Dublin)
    Abstract: We use data from a new international dataset - the European Skills and Jobs Survey - to create a unique measure of skills-displacing technological change (SDT), defined as technological change that may render workers' skills obsolete. We find that 16 percent of adult workers in the EU are impacted by SDT, with significant variance across countries, ranging from a high of 28 percent in Estonia, to below seven percent in Bulgaria. Despite claims that technological change contributes to the deskilling of jobs, we present evidence that SDT is associated with dynamic upskilling of workers. The paper also presents the first direct micro-evidence of the reinstatement effect of automating technology, namely a positive contribution of automation to the task content and skills complexity of the jobs of incumbent workers. Despite the recent focus on the polarising impact of automation and associated reskilling needs of lower-skilled individuals, our evidence also draws attention to the fact that SDT predominantly affects higher-skilled workers, reinforcing inequalities in upskilling opportunities within workplaces. Workers affected by SDT also experience greater job insecurity.
    Keywords: technological change, automation, skills, tasks, skill mismatch, skills obsolescence
    JEL: J24 O33 O31
    Date: 2019–08
  18. By: Sagyndykova, Galiya (Nazarbayev University); Oaxaca, Ronald L. (University of Arizona)
    Abstract: A nine-factor input model is developed to estimate the monthly demand for employment, capital, and weekly hours per worker/workweek in U.S. Manufacturing. The labor inputs correspond to production and non-production workers disaggregated by overtime and non-overtime employment. Policy simulations are conducted to examine the short-run effects on the monthly growth rates for employment, labor earnings, capital usage, and the workweek from either a) raising the overtime premium to double-time, or b) reducing the standard workweek to 35 hours. Although the growth rate policy effects are heterogeneous across disaggregated labor input categories, on aver- age both policy changes exhibit negative effects on the growth rates of industry-wide employment, earnings, and non-labor input usage. The growth rate of the workweek is virtually unaffected by raising the overtime premium but is negatively impacted by reducing the standard work week.
    Keywords: overtime, employment, workweek
    JEL: J23 J88
    Date: 2019–08
  19. By: Gaurav Khanna; Carlos Medina; Anant Nyshadham; Jorge A. Tamayo
    Abstract: Canonical models of crime emphasize economic incentives. Yet, causal evidence of sorting into criminal occupations in response to individual-level variation in incentives is limited. We link administrative socioeconomic microdata with the universe of arrests in Medellín over a decade. We exploit exogenous variation in formal-sector employment around a socioeconomic-score cutoff, below which individuals receive benefits if not formally employed, to test whether a higher cost to formal-sector employment induces crime. Regression discontinuity estimates show this policy generated reductions in formal-sector employment and a corresponding spike in organized crime, but no effects on crimes of impulse or opportunity.
    JEL: J24 K42
    Date: 2019–08
  20. By: Arthur Seibold
    Abstract: This paper documents and analyzes an important and puzzling stylized fact about retirement behavior: the large concentration of job exits at specific ages. In Germany, almost 30% of workers retire precisely in the month when they reach one of three statutory retirement ages, although there is often no incentive or even a disincentive to retire at these thresholds. To study what can explain the concentration of retirements around statutory ages, I use novel administrative data covering the universe of German retirees, and I exploit unique variation in financial retirement incentives as well as statutory ages across individuals in the German pension system. Measuring retirement bunching responses to 644 different discontinuities in pension benefit profiles, I first document that financial incentives alone fail to explain retirement patterns in the data. Second, I show that there is a large direct effect of “presenting” a threshold as a statutory retirement age. Further evidence on mechanisms suggests the framing of statutory ages as reference points for retirement as a potential explanation. A number of alternative channels including firm responses are also discussed but they do not seem to drive the results. Finally, structural bunching estimation is employed to estimate reference point effects. Counterfactual simulations highlight that shifting statutory ages via pension reforms can be an effective policy to increase actual retirement ages with a positive fiscal impact.
    Keywords: retirement, reference points
    JEL: D03 H55 J26
    Date: 2019
  21. By: Jensen, Peter Sandholt (Department of Business and Economics); Radu, Cristina Victoria (Department of Business and Economics); Sharp, Paul Richard (Department of Business and Economics)
    Abstract: The calculation of the number of days worked per year is crucial for understanding pre‐industrial living standards, and yet has presented considerable obstacles due to data scarcity. We present evidence on days worked and seasonality patterns of work using evidence from a large database of micro‐level labor market data for eighteenth century rural Denmark. We estimate that workers worked approximately 5.6 days per week when under full employment. Seasonality of work meant, however, that they were unlikely to find employment during the winter, bringing the estimated number of working days per year to 184. This is lower than often assumed in the literature on real wage calculations, but in line with recent evidence for Malmö and London. We find that days worked increased over the eighteenth century, consistent with the idea of an “industrious revolution”. We suggest however that this was probably mostly due to economic necessity rather than a consumer revolution, since unskilled and low skilled workers needed to work over 300 days per year to afford a subsistence basket.
    Keywords: Working year; seasonality patterns; real wages; annual workers; casual workers; Denmark; eighteenth century
    JEL: J22 N33
    Date: 2019–08–29
  22. By: White, Michael (Policy Studies Institute); Bryson, Alex (University College London)
    Abstract: Using nationally representative linked employer-employee surveys of workplaces with 50 or more employees we find the adoption of High-Performance Work Systems (HPWS) in the private sector is largely positively correlated with employee job attitudes pre-recession. However, high intensity HPWS has partly adverse consequences for private sector employees in the post-recession period. In contrast, there are no indications of public sector employees responding positively or negatively to HPWS and HPWS is not associated with adverse effects post-recession. The sectoral difference in results is interpreted in terms of different employment relationships and different sources of employee motivation.
    Keywords: high performance work systems, public sector, organizational commitment, intrinsic job satisfaction, well-being
    JEL: I31 J45 M5
    Date: 2019–08
  23. By: Eric V. Edmonds; Caroline B. Theoharides
    Abstract: Productive asset grants have become an important tool in efforts to push the very poor out of poverty, but they require labor to convert the asset into income. Using a clustered randomized trial, we work with the Government of the Philippines to evaluate a key component of their child labor elimination program, a $518 productive asset grant directed at families with child laborers. Treatment increases household based economic activity. Household well-being improves, mainly through increases in food security and child welfare. Households achieve these improvements in well-being by drawing upon the labor of household members. Adolescent labor is the most available labor, and we observe increases in employment among adolescents not engaged in child labor at baseline. Households with a family firm or business prior to treatment especially lack available adult labor to work with the asset leading to increases in child labor, including hazardous work, amongst children who were not in child labor at baseline.
    JEL: J22 L26 O15
    Date: 2019–08
  24. By: Oreopoulos, Philip (University of Toronto)
    Abstract: Holzer and Baum's recent book, 'Making College Work: Pathways to Success for Disadvantaged Students,' provides an excellent up-to-date review of higher education. My review first summarizes its key themes: 1) who gains from college and why? 2) mismatch and the need for more structure; 3) problems with remediation; 4) financial barriers and 5) the promise of comprehensive support. I then critique the book's proposed solutions using some of my own qualitative and quantitative data. Some recommendations are worth considering, while others are too expensive or unlikely to make a meaningful difference without addressing the underlying lack of preparedness and motivation of college students. I argue that making mandatory some existing services, such as application assistance and advice, proactive tutoring and advising, and greater career transition support, has the most immediate potential.
    Keywords: college student achievement, returns to college, higher education policy, signaling
    JEL: I2 J24
    Date: 2019–08

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