nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2023‒09‒11
two papers chosen by

  1. Turning worries into performance: Results from an online experiment during COVID By Eva Raiber; Daniela Horta Saenz; Timothée Demont
  2. Individual consequences of occupational decline By Edin, Per-Anders; Evans, Tiernan; Graetz, Georg; Hernnäs, Sofia; Michaels, Guy

  1. By: Eva Raiber (Aix-Marseille School of Economics and Center for Economic Policy Research); Daniela Horta Saenz (Aix-Marseille School of Economics); Timothée Demont (Aix Marseille Université Économiques)
    Abstract: Worrisome topics, such as climate change, economic crises, or the COVID-19 pandemic are increasingly present and pervasive because of digital media and social networks. Do worries triggered by such topics affect the cognitive capacities of the youth? In an online experiment during the COVID-19 pandemic (N=1503), we test how the cognitive performance of university students responds when exposed to topics discussing current mental health issues related to social restrictions or future labor market uncertainties linked to the economic contraction. Moreover, we study how such response is affected by a performance goal. We find that the labor market topic increases cognitive performance when the latter is motivated by a goal. The positive reaction is mainly concentrated among students with larger financial and social resources, which points to an inequality-widening mechanism. Conversely, we find no effect after the mental health topic. We even find a weak negative response among those mentally vulnerable when payout is not conditioned on reaching a goal.
    Date: 2023–08–11
  2. By: Edin, Per-Anders; Evans, Tiernan; Graetz, Georg; Hernnäs, Sofia; Michaels, Guy
    Abstract: We assess the career earnings losses that individual Swedish workers suffered when their occupations’ employment declined. High-quality data allow us to overcome sorting into declining occupations on various attributes, including cognitive and non-cognitive skills. Our estimates show that occupational decline reduced mean cumulative earnings from 1986–2013 by no more than 2%–5%. This loss reflects a combination of reduced earnings conditional on employment, reduced years of employment and increased time spent in unemployment and retraining. While on average workers successfully mitigated their losses, those initially at the bottom of their occupations’ earnings distributions lost up to 8%–11%.
    Keywords: technological change; occupations; inequality; grant number 2017-01326; OUP deal
    JEL: O33 J24
    Date: 2023–08–01

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