nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2007‒02‒10
ten papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. Generational Effects on Adult Height in Contemporary Spain: Exploring Gender and Individual Heterogeneity By Joan Costa Font; Joan Gil Trasfi
  2. Social Capital and Relative Income Concerns: Evidence from 26 Countries By Justina A.V. Fischer; Benno Torgler
  3. Social Identity and Social Exchange: Identification, Support, and Withdrawal from the Job By Knippenberg, D.L. van; Dick, R. van; Tavares, S.
  4. The equal division puzzle – empirical evidence on intergenerational transfers in Sweden By Ohlsson, Henry
  5. The Labor Market Impacts of Youth Training in the Dominican Republic: Evidence from a Randomized Evaluation By David Card; Pablo Ibarraran; Ferdinando Regalia; David Rosas; Yuri Soares
  6. Women, Work, and Culture By Raquel Fernandez
  7. A Class of Chronic Poverty Measures By James E. Foster
  8. Health insurance for the poor : initial impacts of Vietnam ' s health care fund for the poor By Wagstaff, Adam
  9. Does Money Buy Higher Schooling? Evidence from Secondary School Track Choice in Germany By Marcus Tamm
  10. The impact of institutions on motherhood and work By Del Boca Daniela; Pasqua Silvia; Pronzato Chiara

  1. By: Joan Costa Font; Joan Gil Trasfi (Universitat de Barcelona)
    Abstract: As adult height is a well-established retrospective measure of health and standard of living, it is important to understand the factors that determine it. Among them, the influence of socio-environmental factors has been subjected to empirical scrutiny. This paper explores the influence of generational (or environmental) effects and individual and gender-specific heterogeneity on adult height. Our data set is from contemporary Spain, a country governed by an authoritarian regime between 1939 and 1977. First, we use normal position and quantile regression analysis to identify the determinants of self-reported adult height and to measure the influence of individual heterogeneity. Second, we use a Blinder-Oaxaca decomposition approach to explain the gender height gap and its distribution, so as to measure the influence on this gap of individual heterogeneity. Our findings suggest a significant increase in adult height in the generations that benefited from the countrys economic liberalization in the 1950s, and especially those brought up after the transition to democracy in the 1970s. In contrast, distributional effects on height suggest that only in recent generations has height increased more among the tallest. Although the mean gender height gap is 11 cm, generational effects and other controls such as individual capabilities explain on average roughly 5% of this difference, a figure that rises to 10% in the lowest 10% quantile.
    Keywords: blinder-oaxaca decomposition, quantile regression, generational effects, adult height, gender gap, individual heterogeneity
    JEL: N84 I19 N44
    Date: 2007
  2. By: Justina A.V. Fischer; Benno Torgler
    Abstract: Research evidence on the impact of relative income position on individuals’ attitudes and behaviour is sorely lacking. Therefore, using the International Social Survey Programme 1998 data from 26 countries this paper investigates the impact of relative income on 14 measurements of social capital. We find support for a considerable deleterious positional concern effect of persons below the reference income. This effect is more sizeable by far than the beneficial impact of a relative income advantage. Most of the results indicate that such an effect is non-linear. Lastly, changing the reference group (regional versus national) produces no significant differences in the results.
    Keywords: Relative income; positional concerns; social capital; social norms; happiness
    JEL: Z13 I30 D31
    Date: 2007–01
  3. By: Knippenberg, D.L. van; Dick, R. van; Tavares, S. (Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), RSM Erasmus University)
    Abstract: Integrating insights from the social exchange perspective and the social identity perspective on the psychological relationship between the individual and the organization, we propose that evaluations of the support received from the organization and its representatives, and organizational identification interact in predicting withdrawal from the job. Specifically, the relationship of support with withdrawal is proposed to be weaker the stronger employees identify with the organization. This prediction was confirmed in two samples focusing on different operationalizations of support and withdrawal. Sample 1 concerned the interaction of organizational support and organizational identification in predicting turnover intentions, Sample 2 concerned the prediction of absenteeism from supervisor support and organizational identification. We conclude that the present study yields promising first evidence that may lay the basis for further integration of social exchange and social identity analyses of organizational behavior.
    Keywords: Organizational identification;Organizational support;Social identity;Organizational behavior;
    Date: 2005–06–15
  4. By: Ohlsson, Henry (Department of Economics)
    Abstract: The objective of this paper is to study to what extent parents divide their estates unequally between their children. Unequal sharing of parental transfers is, for example, a necessary condition for theories of altruistic (dynastic) behavior to hold. I use a new data set based on the estate reports for 230 widows, widowers, and divorcees from the city of Stockholm, Sweden deceased in 2004. Unequal sharing is unusual, depending on definitions only 7–25 percent of the estates are unequally divided. The data set is also used to estimate probit models for the likelihood of unequal sharing. A first main result is that the probability of unequal sharing is increasing in the size of the estate. Second, the older the children are on average the more likely is unequal sharing. Finally, unequal sharing is more common among deceased from some neighborhoods of the city compared to deceased from other neighborhoods.
    Keywords: bequests; inheritances; equal division; altruism
    JEL: C81 D10 D31 D91 H24
    Date: 2007–01–29
  5. By: David Card; Pablo Ibarraran; Ferdinando Regalia; David Rosas; Yuri Soares
    Abstract: This paper summarizes the findings from the first randomized evaluation of a job training program in Latin America. Between 2001 and 2005 the government of the Dominican Republic operated a subsidized training program for low-income youth in urban areas. The program featured several weeks of classroom instruction followed by an internship at a private sector firm. A random sample of eligible applicants was selected to undergo training, and information was gathered 10-14 months after graduation on both trainees and control group members. Although previous non-experimental evaluations of similar programs in Latin America have suggested a positive impact on employment, we find no evidence of such an effect. There is a marginally significant impact on hourly wages, and on the probability of health insurance coverage, conditional on employment. Finally, we develop an operational definition of the impact of training on "employability" in the context of a dynamic model with state dependence and unobserved heterogeneity. Consistent with our main results, we find no significant impact of the training program on the subsequent employability of trainees.
    JEL: J24
    Date: 2007–02
  6. By: Raquel Fernandez
    Abstract: This paper discusses some recent advances in the area of culture and economics and examines the effect of culture on a key economic outcome: female labor supply. To separate the effect of market variables and institutions from culture, I use an epidemiological approach, studying second-generation American women. I use both female LFP and attitudes in the women's country of ancestry as cultural proxies and show that both cultural proxies have quantitatively significant effects on women's work outcomes. The paper concludes with some suggestions for future empirical and theoretical research topics in this area.
    JEL: J12 J21 Z1
    Date: 2007–02
  7. By: James E. Foster (Department of Economics, Vanderbilt University)
    Abstract: This paper presents a new family of chronic poverty measures based on the Pa poverty measures of Foster, Greer,and Thorbecke (1984). The chronically poor are identified using two cutoffs: a standard poverty line, which identifies the time periods during which a person is poor; and a duration cutoff, which is the minimum percentage of time a person must be in poverty in order to be chronically poor. The new family of chronic poverty measures is constructed by raising the (per-period) normalized gaps of the chronically poor to a power a > 0 and then aggregating. The resulting indices, which can be viewed as duration adjusted Pa measures, satisfy a battery of properties for chronic poverty indices, including time monotonicity and population decomposability. An illustrative application of the family is provided using data from Argentina.
    Keywords: Chronic Poverty, Distribution, Measurement, Axioms
    JEL: I32 D63 D31
    Date: 2007–01
  8. By: Wagstaff, Adam
    Abstract: Vietnam ' s Health Care Fund for the Poor (HCFP) uses government revenues to finance health care for the poor, ethnic minorities living in selected mountainous provinces designated as difficult, and all households living in communes officially designated as highly disadvantaged. The program, which started in 2003, did not as of 2004 include all these groups, but those who were included (about 15 percent of the population) were disproportionately poor. Estimates of the program ' s impact-obtained using single differences and propensity score matching on a trimmed sample-suggest that HCFP has substantially increased service utilization, especially in-patient care, and has reduced the risk of catastrophic spending. It has not, however, reduced average out-of-pocket spending, and appears to have had negligible impacts on utilization among the poorest decile.
    Keywords: Health Monitoring & Evaluation,Health Economics & Finance,Housing & Human Habitats,Health Law,Health Systems Development & Reform
    Date: 2007–02–01
  9. By: Marcus Tamm (RWI Essen and Ruhr-University Bochum)
    Abstract: The German schooling system selects children into different secondary school tracks already at a very early stage in life. School track choice heavily influences choices and opportunities later in life. It has often been observed that secondary schooling achievements display a strong correlation with parental income. We use sibling fixed effects models and information on a natural experiment in order to analyze whether this correlation is due to a causal effect of income or due to unobservable factors that themselves might be correlated across generations. Our main findings suggest that income has no positive causal effect on school choice and that differences between high- and low-income households are driven by unobserved heterogeneity, e.g. differences in motivation.
    Keywords: Child poverty, educational attainment, secondary schools, sibling differences, natural experiment.
    JEL: D31 I21 J13
    Date: 2007
  10. By: Del Boca Daniela (University of Turin); Pasqua Silvia; Pronzato Chiara
    Abstract: In this paper, we aim to explore the impact of social policies and labour market characteristics on the woman’s joint decisions of working and having children, using data from the European Community Household Panel (ECHP). We include in the analysis, beyond personal characteristics, variables related to the childcare system, parental leave arrangements, and labour market flexibility. Results show that a non negligible portion of the differences in participation and fertility rates across women from different European countries can be attributed to the characteristics of these institutions.
    Date: 2006–08

This nep-ltv issue is ©2007 by Maximo Rossi. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.