nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2010‒08‒06
five papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. Conditional Cooperation: Evidence for the Role of Self-Control By Peter Martinsson; Kristian Ove R. Myrseth; Conny Wollbrant
  2. Educational Inequality in Argentina: The best and worst performers. By Melisa Morales; Corina Paz Terán
  3. Preferences for Redistribution and Pensions: What Can We Learn from Experiments? By Tausch, Franziska; Potters, Jan; Riedl, Arno
  4. Evolution of Gender Wage Gaps in Latin America at the Turn of the Twentieth Century: An Addendum to "New Century, Old Disparities" By Nopo, Hugo; Hoyos, Alejandro
  5. Labor Market Policy: A Comparative View on the Costs and Benefits of Labor Market Flexibility By Kahn, Lawrence M.

  1. By: Peter Martinsson (University of Gothenburg); Kristian Ove R. Myrseth (ESMT European School of Management and Technology); Conny Wollbrant (University of Gothenburg)
    Abstract: When facing the opportunity to allocate resources between oneself and others, individuals may experience a self-control conflict between urges to act selfishly and preferences to act pro-socially. We explore the domain of conditional cooperation, and we test the hypothesis that increased expectations about others’ average contribution increases own contributions to public goods more when self-control is high than when it is low. We pair a subtle framing technique with a public goods experiment. Consistent with our hypothesis, we find that conditionally cooperative behavior is stronger (i.e., less imperfect) when expectations of high contributions are accompanied by high levels of self-control.
    Keywords: self-control, pro-social behavior, public good experiment, conditional cooperation
    JEL: D01 D64 D70
    Date: 2010–07–26
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:esm:wpaper:esmt-10-004&r=ltv
  2. By: Melisa Morales (Inter-American Development Bank); Corina Paz Terán (Universidad Nacional de Tucumán)
    Abstract: What do we know about inequality in educational attainment across Argentina's cities? To answer this question, we present the education Gini coefficient for the period 2002-2007. Using microdata from the national household survey, we document the following results. First, educational inequality has declined in almost all metropolitan areas whereas i t has increased in Posadas, Mar del Plata, Rosario and Formosa. Second, although there are no important differences in the average years of schooling across cities, great disparities exist with respect to the education Gini. Buenos Aires City is in a leading position, especially in relation to the northeast region of the country and, particularly, Posadas city.
    Keywords: Gini, Inequality, Bootstrap
    JEL: C43 D3 J24
    Date: 2010–05
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:slt:wpaper:5&r=ltv
  3. By: Tausch, Franziska (Maastricht University); Potters, Jan (Tilburg University); Riedl, Arno (Maastricht University)
    Abstract: Redistribution is an inevitable feature of collective pension schemes and economic experiments have revealed that most people have a preference for redistribution that is not merely inspired by self-interest. Interestingly, little is known on how these preferences interact with preferences for different pension schemes. In this paper we review the experimental evidence on preferences for redistribution and suggest some links to redistribution through pensions. For that purpose we distinguish between three types of situations. The first deals with distributional preferences behind a veil of ignorance. In the second type of situation, individuals make choices in front of the veil of ignorance and know their position. Finally, we discuss situations in which income is determined by interdependent rather than individual choices. In the closing parts of the paper we discuss whether and how these experimental results speak to the redistribution issues of pensions. For example, do they argue for or against mandatory participation? Should we have less redistribution and more actuarial fairness? How does this depend on the type of redistribution involved?
    Keywords: redistribution, fairness, pension, insurance, experiment
    JEL: C90 D01 D63 D64 H55
    Date: 2010–07
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5090&r=ltv
  4. By: Nopo, Hugo (Inter-American Development Bank); Hoyos, Alejandro (Inter-American Development Bank)
    Abstract: This paper complements the findings of Atal, Ñopo and Winder (2010) on gender and ethnic wage gaps for 18 Latin American countries circa 2005 by analyzing gender wage gaps for the same countries between circa 1992 and circa 2007. During this span the overall gender earnings gaps dropped about 7 percentage points, while the unexplained component dropped between 3 and 4 percentage points, depending on the control variables used. The gap declined most notably among workers at the bottom of the earnings distribution, with children at home, the self-employed, part-time workers and those in rural areas – the segments of the labor market that were previously reported as having the highest unexplained gender disparities. Most of the reduction in unexplained gaps occurred within segments rather than due to the composition of labor markets. The paper additionally finds a limited role for job tenure in explaining gender wage gaps.
    Keywords: gender, wage gaps, Latin America, matching
    JEL: C14 D31 J16 O54
    Date: 2010–07
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5086&r=ltv
  5. By: Kahn, Lawrence M. (Cornell University)
    Abstract: I review theories and evidence on wage-setting institutions and labor market policies in an international comparative context. These include collective bargaining, minimum wages, employment protection laws, unemployment insurance (UI), mandated parental leave, and active labor market policies (ALMPs). Since it is unlikely that an unregulated private sector would provide the income insurance these institutions do, these policies may enhance economic efficiency. However, to the extent that unemployment or resource misallocation results from such measures, these efficiency gains may be offset. Overall, Scandinavia and Central Europe follow distinctively more interventionist policies than the English speaking countries in the Northern Hemisphere. Possible explanations for such differences include vulnerability to external market forces and ethnic homogeneity. I then review evidence on the impacts of these policies and institutions. While the interventionist model appears to cause lower levels of wage inequality and high levels of job security to incumbent workers, it also in some cases leads to the relegation of new entrants (disproportionately women, youth and immigrants) as well as the less skilled to temporary jobs or unemployment. Making labor markets more flexible could bring these groups into the regular labor market to a greater extent, at the expense of higher levels of economic insecurity for incumbents and higher levels of wage inequality. The Danish model of loosening employment protections while providing relatively generous UI benefits with strict job search requirements holds out the possibility of reducing barriers for new entrants and the less skilled while maintaining some level of income insurance.
    Keywords: labor market flexibility
    JEL: J68
    Date: 2010–07
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5100&r=ltv

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