nep-ure New Economics Papers
on Urban and Real Estate Economics
Issue of 2010‒10‒09
twenty-six papers chosen by
Steve Ross
University of Connecticut

  1. Managing Housing Bubbles in Regional Economies Under EMU: Ireland and Spain By Conefrey, Thomas; Fitz Gerald, John
  2. Positive but also negative effects of ethnic diversity in schools on educational performance? An empirical test using cross-national PISA data. By Dronkers, Jaap
  3. The Demand for Historic Preservation By John I. Carruthers; David E. Clark; Michael Tealdi
  4. Economic Effects of Clustering of Ethnically Similar Communities in Kenya: Application of Spatial Correlation Model By Nobuaki Hamaguchi
  5. The Gains from Right to Rent By Dean Baker; Hye Jin Rho
  6. Designing a property tax without property values: Analysis in the case of Ireland By Mayor, Karen; Lyons, Seán; Tol, Richard S. J.
  7. Forecasting and assessing Euro area house prices through the lens of key fundamentals By Luca Gattini; Paul Hiebert
  8. Evidence of Class-size Effects on Bullying in Swedish Schools By Persson, Mattias; Svensson, Mikael
  9. Spatial Decentralization and Program Evaluation: Theory and an Example from Indonesia By Pitt, Mark M.; Menon, Nidhiya
  10. Women in the Urban Industrial Labour Force in India By Leela Gulati
  11. Parental Risk Attitudes and Children's Secondary School Track Choice By Heineck, Guido; Wölfel, Oliver
  12. Firm Strategy, Location and MNE-networks By Lööf, Hans; Johansson, Borje
  13. In Search of a Better Life: The Occupational Attainment of Rural and Urban Migrants in China By Ayako Kondo; Dongshu Ou
  14. Determinants of Violent and Property Crimes in England and Wales: A Panel Data Analysis By Lu Han; Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay; Samrat Bhattacharya
  15. A Structural Model of Segregation in Social Networks By Angelo Mele
  16. An econometric model to quantify benchmark downturn LGD on residential mortgages By Morone, Marco; Cornaglia, Anna
  17. The Value of Optimization in Dynamic Ride-Sharing: a Simulation Study in Metro Atlanta By Agatz, N.A.H.; Erera, A.; Savelsbergh, M.W.P.; Wang, X.
  18. A Simple Repeat Sales House Price Index: Comparative Properties Under Alternative Data Generation Processes. By Arthur Grimes; Chris Young
  19. Property Rights for the Poor: Effects of Land Titling By Sebastian Galiani; Ernesto Schargrodsky
  20. Understanding Neighbourhood Effects: Selection Bias and Residential Mobility By Bergström, Lina; van Ham, Maarten
  21. Quantifying Spatial Mislocation in Centrally Provided Public Goods By Siva Athreya; Rohini Somanathan
  22. Do Clusters Really Matter for Innovation Practices in Information Technology? Questioning the Significance of Technological Knowledge Spillovers By Franz Huber
  23. Phases of Imitation and Innovation in a North-South Endogenous Growth Model By Miguel Atienza; Marcelo Lufin
  24. Environmental Justice: Do Poor and Minority Populations Face More Hazards? By Wayne B. Gray; Ronald J. Shadbegian; Ann Wolverton
  25. A Review of Local Economic and Employment Development Policy Approaches in OECD Countries: Executive Summary and Synthesis of Findings By Jonathan Potter; Marco Marchese
  26. Human Capital and Population Growth in Non-Metropolitan U.S. Counties: The Importance of College Student Migration By Winters, John V

  1. By: Conefrey, Thomas; Fitz Gerald, John
    Keywords: emu/Ireland
    Date: 2010–07
  2. By: Dronkers, Jaap
    Abstract: In this inaugural lecture, I will estimate the effects on language skills of two characteristics of school populations: average/share and diversity, both on the ethnic and the sociocultural dimension. I will use the cross-national PISA 206 data, for both 15-year-old native pupils and pupils with an immigrant background. A larger ethnic diversity of schools in secondary education hampers the educational performance of both pupils with an immigrant background and native pupils, but the negative effects are smaller in education systems with little stratification and strongest in highly stratified education systems. The sociocultural diversity of schools does not have an effect on educational performance, but these effects are positive in highly stratified educational systems and negative in hardly stratified systems. However, the average parental educational level of schools is very important for the educational performance of children, and this hardly differs between education systems. A higher share of pupils with an immigrant background in a school hampers educational performance, but if these pupils have the same regional origin (Islamic countries; non-Islamic Asian countries), a higher share of pupils with an immigrant background at that school promotes educational performance. Pupils originating from Islamic countries have substantially lower language scores than equivalent pupils with an immigrant background from other regions. This cannot be explained by the individual socioeconomic backgrounds, school characteristics, or education systems.
    Keywords: immigration; educational performance; country of origin; ethnic school diversity; social-economic school diversity; ethnic and social-economic share/average of schools; educational systems
    JEL: I21 J61 J24
    Date: 2010–06–17
  3. By: John I. Carruthers (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Policy Development and Research and University of Maryland, National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education); David E. Clark (Marquette University, Department of Economics); Michael Tealdi (Marquette University Department of Economics)
    Abstract: Historic preservation is commonly used to protect old buildings and neighborhoods from deterioration. In 1981, the City of Milwaukee established a historic preservation commission to develop and maintain a local register of places with historical importance to the area. The commission also reviews all applications for historic status as well as any requests for exterior alterations. As such, there are numerous rules and restrictions that are imposed on property owners once it has been declared a historic site. Thus, while historic designation can serve to internalize the externalities in neighborhoods with historic buildings, it also imposes costs on homeowners who wish to make improvements to their homes. This paper uses a hedonic model to estimate the impact of historic preservation on the sale price of a single family home in the Milwaukee area. Preliminary results show that the impact of historic preservation is positive when it is significant, with the average impact at 26.6%. However, there was significant variation between districts, with the impact significantly positive in 13 of 22 districts used in the sample. Specifically, the positive impact ranged between 11% and 65%, holding other factors constant. None of the 22 districts had a negative and significant impact. An evaluation of spillover effects reveal that just over one third of them displayed positive and signficant spillover effects, whereas 21% had negative and significant spillover effects. The remainder were insignificant. An important question is what factors influence this variability in historic preservation effects. The eventual goal of this research is to extend our preliminary analysis to two stages using a recently developed method that employs spatial econometric methods to solve the unique identification problems inherent in hedonic models (Carruthers and Clark, forthcoming in Journal of Regional Science). This will permit us to determine the specific factors that influence these premiums. While the spatial estimates presented in this preliminary work do not permit a two-stage model, we did explore whether implicit prices appear to be correlated with the household income and racial makeup of the neighborhoods in which they are located. The findings show little evidence that the implicit values of historic districts are correlated, but the implicit price associated with historic district spillovers was positively correlated with both neighborhood measures.
    Keywords: Hedonic housing model, historic preservation district, Milwaukee
    JEL: R31 Q51
    Date: 2010–09
  4. By: Nobuaki Hamaguchi (Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration, Kobe University)
    Abstract: Using regional data of Kenya, we found that income spillovers depend on ethnic similarity, which suggests the influence of ethnic bias. This result implies, for policy making, that the question of interregional transaction costs cannot be narrowly focused on problems of transportation infrastructure but it is also related with ethnic divisions in African context.
    Keywords: Ethnic diversity, transaction cost
    JEL: R58 O18
    Date: 2010–10
  5. By: Dean Baker; Hye Jin Rho
    Abstract: Though Congress and Presidents Bush and Obama put forth several different mortgage modification programs, the rate of foreclosures has continued to rise over the past several years. According to CoreLogic, about one-in-four (23%) mortgages were underwater in the second quarter of 2010, and another one-in-four (28%) were nearly underwater. It is clear that the vast majority of people facing foreclosure are not benefiting from these programs. The flagship program, HAMP, has managed less than half a million permanent mortgage modifications as of July. The limited impact of mortgage modification plans has increased interest in alternative policies to help homeowners facing foreclosure. One sensible alternative is the “Right to Rent” legislation introduced in the House of Representatives by Representatives Grijalva and Kaptur (H.R. 5028) that would give homeowners facing foreclosure the option to remain in their homes as tenants up to five years. During this period, they would be paying the fair market rent as set by an independent appraiser. This would give homeowners an important degree of security, since they could not simply be thrown out on the streets. If they like their house, their eighborhood, and the schools for their kids, they need not have their lives severely disrupted by foreclosure. This policy should also benefit neighborhoods in the most hard-hit areas, since they would not have large numbers of vacant homes following foreclosures.
    Keywords: right to rent, foreclosures, housing
    JEL: G G2 G21 G28 R R2 R21
    Date: 2010–09
  6. By: Mayor, Karen; Lyons, Seán; Tol, Richard S. J.
    Abstract: We examine the implications of using hedonic regressions of house values as the basis for property tax assessment in the Republic of Ireland. Ad valorem property taxes are more equitable than flat rate taxes, but their equity benefits can be reduced if the relative values of dwellings are inaccurately assessed. Achieving greater accuracy in assessment tends to increase administrative costs, so policymakers face a trade-off between cost and accuracy. Using the Irish National Survey of Housing Quality of 2002, this study analyses the contribution that information about selected property characteristics can make to determine the relative values of residential properties in Ireland. These characteristics are the location of the dwelling, house size in square meters, the number of rooms and bedrooms in the home, the age of the house and the type of dwelling. The values of residential properties are estimated using these variables in turn and the prediction errors are presented in terms of the absolute value error and the assessment ratio (the estimated value divided by the market value). We find that it is possible to assign approximately 80% of houses nationally within the correct tax valuation band using just one of five house characteristics. Households whose house price is under assessed tend to be those with the greatest means (highly skilled professionals and high income earners), so a tax assessment system based on this type of valuation would tend to make regressive errors (while a property tax itself is regressive too). Consequently, checks would need to be put in place in order to more accurately estimate very highly priced properties as well as introducing exemptions for lower value properties and low income groups. The system could also be used to identify likely mis-reporting if using a self-assessment system.
    Keywords: hedonic regression/Ireland/property tax
    Date: 2010
  7. By: Luca Gattini (European Central Bank, Kaiserstrasse 29, 60311 Frankfurt am Main, Germany.); Paul Hiebert (European Central Bank, Kaiserstrasse 29, 60311 Frankfurt am Main, Germany.)
    Abstract: This paper presents a parsimonious model for forecasting and analysing euro area house prices and their interrelations with the macroeconomy. A quarterly vector error correction model is estimated over 1970-2009 using supply and demand forces central to the determination of euro area house prices in equilibrium and their dynamics: housing investment, real disposable income per capita and a mixed maturity measure of the real interest rate. In addition to house price forecasts using the resulting reduced form equation, a structural decomposition of the system is obtained employing a common trends framework of King, Plosser, Stock, and Watson (1991), which allows for the identification and economic interpretation of permanent and transitory shocks. The main results are twofold. First, the reduced form model tracks closely turning points in house prices when examining out-of-sample one- and two- step ahead forecasts. Moreover, the model suggests that euro area housing was overvalued in recent years, implying a period of stagnation to bring housing valuation back in line with its modelled fundamentals. Second, housing demand and financing cost shocks appear to have contributed strongly to the dynamism in euro area house prices over the sample period. While much of the increase appears to reflect a permanent component, a transitory component has also contributed from 2005 onwards. Specification tests suggest a robustness of the small model to alternative specifications, along with validity of the long-run restrictions. JEL Classification: R21, R31, C32.
    Keywords: House price, Forecasting, Vector autoregression.
    Date: 2010–10
  8. By: Persson, Mattias (Department of Business, Economics, Statistics and Informatics); Svensson, Mikael (Department of Business, Economics, Statistics and Informatics)
    Abstract: In this paper we estimate the effect of class-size on the prevalence of physical and verbal bullying in Swedish schools. We use self-reported individual level data from approx. 3 100 Swedish adolescents in the 9th grade (aged 15-16) regarding their experience of bullying in the school environment. The data covers 40 schools containing 159 classes. We run probit regressions, school fixed-effects probit regressions controlling for between-school endogeneity, as well as using an instrumental variable approach controlling for between- and within-school endogeneity. The results indicate, giving the same conclusion in all specifications, that bullying is not less or more prevalent in smaller classes. However, there are some results indicating that in smaller classes there is a higher probability that an adolescent self-identifies as a bully.
    Keywords: Bullying; Class-size; School; Adolescents; Sweden
    JEL: H75 I12 I21
    Date: 2010–09–08
  9. By: Pitt, Mark M. (Brown University); Menon, Nidhiya (Brandeis University)
    Abstract: This paper proposes a novel instrumental variable method for program evaluation that only requires a single cross-section of data on the spatial intensity of programs and outcomes. The instruments are derived from a simple theoretical model of government decision-making in which governments are responsive to the attributes of places and their populations, rather than to the attributes of individuals, in making allocation decisions across space, and have a social welfare function that is spatially weakly separable, that is, that the budgeting process is multi-stage with respect to administrative districts and sub-districts. The spatial instrumental variables model is then estimated and tested by GMM with a single cross-section of Indonesian census data. The results offer support to the identification strategy proposed.
    Keywords: spatial decentralization, program evaluation, instrumental variables, Indonesia
    JEL: C21 H44 O12 C50
    Date: 2010–09
  10. By: Leela Gulati
    Abstract: This paper takes a look at the women urban industrial labour force in India. [Working Paper No. 127]
    Keywords: Women, labour, force, india, urban, industrial
    Date: 2010
  11. By: Heineck, Guido (IAB, Nürnberg); Wölfel, Oliver (IAB, Nürnberg)
    Abstract: It is well known that individuals' risk attitudes are related to behavioral outcomes such as smoking, portfolio decisions, and also educational attainment, but there is barely any evidence on whether parental risk attitudes affect the educational attainment of dependent children. We add to this literature and examine children's secondary school track choice in Germany where tracking occurs at age ten and has a strong binding character. Our results indicate no consistent patterns for paternal risk preferences but a strong negative impact of maternal risk aversion on children's enrollment in upper secondary school.
    Keywords: educational choice, risk attitudes, SOEP
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2010–09
  12. By: Lööf, Hans (CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies, Royal Institute of Technology); Johansson, Borje (CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies, Royal Institute of Technology)
    Abstract: This paper asks three explicit questions, where the first one concerns the impact of a firm’s choice of innovation strategy and knowledge resources. The study aims at confirming that firms with a strategy with R&D persistency have a markedly higher productivity, profitability and wage level than other firms. The second question is focused on the location of firms, with a distinction between firms dwelling in a metropolitan region and other firms. The hypothesis is that a metropolitan knowledge milieu may augment the performance of firms. The third question concerns knowledge exchange in regional and global networks that pertain to multinational affiliates. Applying Swedish data on individual firms and their location, the paper shows that firm performance is significantly higher when the three factors R&D persistency, metropolitan location and affiliation to a multinational group are combined.
    Keywords: R&D; knowledge; productivity; profitability; regional milieu
    JEL: F23 L25 O31 O33 R11
    Date: 2010–09–28
  13. By: Ayako Kondo; Dongshu Ou
    Abstract: This paper investigates the occupational attainment and job mobility of permanent rural-to-urban migrants and compares them with migrants who were born with an urban hukou. Using data from the 2003 China General Social Survey, we examine how much of the gaps in occupational-prestige scores between rural- and urban-born migrants can be explained by differences in observable characteristics up to the time of migration. We find that, with controls for these characteristics, the difference in occupational attainment between rural and urban migrants becomes statistically insignificant or even positive for some subgroups. In contrast, our analysis of job mobility reveals that rural migrants are generally more mobile and also more likely to move to better jobs by changing work units, whereas urban migrants are more likely to be promoted within a work unit.
    Date: 2010–09
  14. By: Lu Han; Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay; Samrat Bhattacharya
    Abstract: We examine various determinants of property and violent crimes by using police force area level (PFA) data on England and Wales over the period 1992-2008. Our list of potential determinants includes two law enforcement variables, crime-specific detection rate and prison population, and various socio-economic variables such as unemployment rate, real earnings, proportion of young people and Gini Coefficient. By adopting a fixed effect dynamic GMM estimation methodology we attempt to address the potential bias that arises from the presence of time-invariant unobserved characteristics of a PFA and endogeneity of several regressors. We find that, on average, higher detection rate and prison population leads to lower poverty and violent crimes. However, socio-economic variables play a limited role in explaining different crime types.
    Keywords: crime, dynamic panel, GMM, law enforcement, socio-economic variables
    JEL: K42 C23
    Date: 2010–09
  15. By: Angelo Mele (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)
    Abstract: In this paper, I develop and estimate a dynamic model of strategic network formation with heterogeneous agents. The main theoretical result is the existence of a unique stationary equilibrium, which characterizes the probability of observing a specific network in the data. As a consequence, the structural parameters can be estimated using only one observation of the network at a single point in time. The estimation is challenging, since the exact evaluation of the likelihood function is computationally infeasible even for very small networks. To overcome this problem, I propose a Bayesian Markov Chain Monte Carlo algorithm that avoids the direct evaluation of the likelihood. This method drastically reduces the computational burden of estimating the posterior distribution and allows inference in high dimensional models. I present an application to the study of segregation in school friendship networks, using data from Add Health. The latter contains the actual social network of each student in a representative sample of US schools. My results suggest that for White students, the value of a same-race friend decreases with the fraction of whites in the school. This relationship is of opposite sign for African American students. The model is used to study how different desegregation policies may affect the structure of the network in equilibrium. I find an inverted U-shape relationship between the fraction of students belonging to a racial group and the expected equilibrium segregation levels. These results suggests that these policies should be carefully designed in order to be effective.
    Keywords: Social Networks, Bayesian Estimation, Markov Chain Monte Carlo
    JEL: D85 C15 C73
    Date: 2010–09
  16. By: Morone, Marco; Cornaglia, Anna
    Abstract: The paper describes a theoretical approach to determine the downturn LGD for residential mortgages, which is compliant with the regulatory requirement and thus suited to be used for validation, at least as it can give benchmark results. The link between default rates and recovery rates is in fact acknowledged by the regulatory framework as the driver of the downturn LGD, but data constraints do not usually allow for direct estimation of such a dependency. Both default rates and LGD parameters can anyway be related to macroeconomic variables: in the case of mortgages, real estate prices are the common driver. Household default rates are modelled inside a Vector Autoregressive Model incorporating a few other macroeconomic variables, which is estimated on Italian data. Assuming that LGD historical data series are not available, real estate prices influence on recovery rates is described through a theoretical Bayesian approach: possession probability conditional to Loan to Value can thus be quantified, which determines the magnitude of the effect of a price increase on LGD. Macroeconomic variables are then simulated on a five years path in order to determine the loss distribution (default rates times LGD per unit of EAD), both in the case of stochastic price dependent LGD and of deterministic LGD (but still variable default rates). The ratio between the two measures of loss, calculated at the 99.9th percentile for consistency with the regulatory formulas, corresponds to the downturn effect on LGD. In fact, the numerator of the ratio takes into account correlations between DR and LGD. Some results are presented for different combinations of average LGD and unconditional possession probability, which are specific for each bank.
    Keywords: downturn LGD; default and recovery rates correlation; mortgage; Loan to Value; real estate price; possession probability; Bayesian approach; stress testing; Vector Autoregression;
    JEL: C32 C15 G32 C01 C11 G21
    Date: 2010–05–28
  17. By: Agatz, N.A.H.; Erera, A.; Savelsbergh, M.W.P.; Wang, X.
    Abstract: Smartphone technology enables dynamic ride-sharing systems that bring together people with similar itineraries and time schedules to share rides on short-notice. This paper considers the problem of matching drivers and riders in this dynamic setting. We develop optimization-based approaches that aim at minimizing the total system-wide vehicle miles and individual travel costs. To assess the merits of our methods we present a simulation study based on 2008 travel demand data from metropolitan Atlanta. The simulation results indicate that the use of sophisticated optimization methods instead of simple greedy matching rules may substantially improve the performance of ride-sharing systems. Furthermore, even with relatively low participation rates, it appears that sustainable populations of dynamic ride-sharing participants may be possible even in relatively sprawling urban areas with many employment centers.
    Keywords: ride-share;dynamic;carpool;matching;passenger transportation
    Date: 2010–08–17
  18. By: Arthur Grimes (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research; and University of Waikato); Chris Young (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research)
    Abstract: We propose a new method to estimate a repeat-sales house price index. Our unbalanced panel method employs an OLS panel regression to estimate the (log) house price as a function of time fixed effects and house-specific fixed effects. Comparisons are made across three repeat-sales methods using actual data, and using simulated data with both stationary and non-stationary relative price innovations. The unbalanced panel method comprehensively utilises all sale information on a house rather than splitting sales into distinct pairs. It is the simplest of the methods to implement, and possesses superior properties to the other two methods under a wide range of data generation processes.
    Keywords: Repeat-Sales, House Price Index, Case Shiller, Unbalanced Panel
    JEL: C43 R32
    Date: 2010–09
  19. By: Sebastian Galiani (Department of Economics, Washington University in St Louis); Ernesto Schargrodsky (Universidad Torcuato Di Tella)
    Abstract: Secure property rights are considered a key determinant of economic development. The evaluation of the causal effects of property rights, however, is a difficult task as their allocation is typically endogenous. To overcome this identification problem, we exploit a natural experiment in the allocation of land titles. In 1981, squatters occupied a piece of land in a poor suburban area of Buenos Aires. In 1984, a law was passed expropriating the former owners’ land to entitle the occupants. Some original owners accepted the government compensation, while others disputed the compensation payment in the slow Argentine courts. These different decisions by the former owners generated an exogenous allocation of property rights across squatters. Using data from two surveys performed in 2003 and 2007, we find that entitled families substantially increased housing investment, reduced household size, and enhanced the education of their children relative to the control group. These effects, however, did not take place through improvements in access to credit. Our results suggest that land titling can be an important tool for poverty reduction, albeit not through the shortcut of credit access, but through the slow channel of increased physical and human capital investment, which should help to reduce poverty in the future generations.
    Keywords: Property rights, land titling, natural experiment, urban poverty.
    JEL: P14 Q15 O16 J13
    Date: 2010–08
  20. By: Bergström, Lina (Uppsala University); van Ham, Maarten (University of St. Andrews)
    Abstract: The number of studies investigating neighbourhood effects has increased rapidly over the last two decades. Although many of these studies claim to have found evidence for neighbourhood effects, most 'evidence' is likely the result of reversed causality. The main challenge in modelling neighbourhood effects is the (econometric) identification of causal effects. The most severe problem is selection bias as a result of selective sorting into neighbourhoods. This paper argues that in order to further our understanding of neighbourhood effects we should explicitly incorporate neighbourhood sorting into our models. Neighbourhood effect studies are in the situation where the processes behind one of its key methodological problems (selection bias) are also critical to fully understand the neighbourhood context itself. It is thus remarkable that residential mobility and neighbourhood sorting has been almost completely ignored in the neighbourhood effects literature.
    Keywords: neighbourhoods, selective mobility, neighbourhood effects, selection bias, migration, residential mobility
    JEL: I30 J60 R23
    Date: 2010–09
  21. By: Siva Athreya; Rohini Somanathan
    Abstract: In this paper they show how an optimization algorithm can be used to approximately quantify the costs to users of spatial misallocation in centrally provided public goods. This method can be employed to evaluate the large programs of public good construction that have been central features of economic plans in many developing countries. They apply these methods to the allocation of post-offices in an administrative block of South India between1981-1991and find that more appropriate choices for post office locations could have reduced aggregate costs of travel to citizens in this area by at least20%. [Working Paper No. 148]
    Keywords: optimization, algorithm, approximately, quantify, misallocation, spatial, public good, construction, developing countries, travel, citizens
    Date: 2010
  22. By: Franz Huber
    Abstract: A widespread assumption in economic geography and the economics of innovation is that firms located in clusters benefit from territorial learning and knowledge spillovers. However, it remains unclear to what extent these benefits actually occur. This paper aims to address this issue and examines to what extent research and development (R&D) workers in the Cambridge Information Technology (IT) Cluster benefit from being located in the Cluster. The study shows why many do not believe that their work benefits from being located in the Cluster. The results suggest that academics as well as policy makers need to be more careful with the assumption of technological knowledge spillovers in innovative clusters. The significant advantages of the Cambridge IT Cluster seem to be of a different nature; in particular they concern labour market advantages and benefits from the global ‘brand’ of Cambridge.
    Keywords: Clusters; Knowledge Spillovers; Territorial Learning; Agglomeration Economies
    JEL: D83 O18 R11
    Date: 2010
  23. By: Miguel Atienza (Department of Economics, Universidad Católica del Norte); Marcelo Lufin (Department of Economics, Universidad Católica del Norte)
    Abstract: The structure of occupations by activity is not similar across a country (Barbour and Markusen, 2007). While this is true for most occupations, it is not the case for those that are knowledge intensive, which tend to be spatially concentrated. This article proposes a methodology to analyze the differences between the occupational and the industrial structures of regions and cities, and to identify which occupations contribute more to producing functional heterogeneity, controlling by sectoral differences. This methodology is applied in the case of the main cities of Chile using information from the 2002 census. The results show that, controlling by sector differences, a group of occupations introduce significant differences between cities, revealing their position in a hierarchy of functional relations
    Keywords: Cities, Industrial mix, Occupational mix
    JEL: R11 R12
    Date: 2010–04
  24. By: Wayne B. Gray; Ronald J. Shadbegian; Ann Wolverton
    Abstract: In this paper, we examine the large and expanding area of Environmental Justice (EJ). The research in this area has developed from examining relatively simple comparisons of current demographic characteristics near environmental nuisances to performing multiple regression analysis and considering demographics at the time of siting. One area that has received considerably less attention is the identification of potential mechanisms that could be driving observed EJ correlations. We extend the current literature by examining one possible mechanism: the intensity of regulatory enforcement activity. If regulators pay less attention to the environmental performance of plants located near poor and minority areas, those plants might feel less pressure to pursue pollution abatement projects, increasing environmental hazards in those areas. We perform our analysis on a sample of manufacturing plants located near four large U.S. cities: Los Angeles, Boston, Columbus, and Houston. Our analysis of regulatory activity found little evidence that demographic variables have a significant impact on the allocation of regulatory activity. In particular, regulatory activity does not seem to be less intense in plants located near particular demographic groups. It is true that plants located in minority neighborhoods are inspected less often and face fewer enforcement actions, but these effects are nearly always small and insignificant, and plants located in lower-income areas seem to face (surprisingly) more regulatory activity. In a separate analysis, we also find very little evidence that demographic variables significantly influence pollution emissions. . In summary, the results presented here do not show much evidence to support EJ concerns about either regulatory activity or pollution emissions, at least within the set of plants, pollutants, and time periods covered in our analysis.
    Keywords: environmental justice, regulatory activity, enforcement, political, poor, minority
    JEL: D21 Q52 Q56
    Date: 2010–09
  25. By: Jonathan Potter; Marco Marchese
    Abstract: This Review of Local Economic and Employment Development Policy Approaches in OECD Countries has been carried out by the OECD LEED Programme in collaboration with the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG). The aim of the review is to identify successful and/or innovative policy initiatives that could be relevant to Wales and regional economic development models that could inspire Wales's future strategy-making. Given the large volume of material already available on Welsh economic challenges and policies, the focus was not on "looking in" but on "looking out" at initiatives that could inspire Wales from other OECD regions, based on existing understanding of the challenges. The two main objectives of the review have therefore been: a) identify and analyse innovative and/or successful single policy tools that could potentially be applied in Wales; b) identify and analyse some broader regional economic strategies and their delivery arrangements that could inspire the overall economic development approach of Wales.
    Date: 2010–09
  26. By: Winters, John V
    Abstract: Researchers have consistently shown that the stock of human capital in an area, measured as the share of the adult population with a college degree, is a strong predictor of future population growth. This paper examines this relationship for U.S. non-metropolitan counties and posits that student migration for higher education may play an important role. Students often move to an area for college and then stay in the area after their education is complete, causing the area’s educated population to grow. Empirical evidence suggests that student migration explains nearly all of the greater in-migration to highly educated non-metropolitan counties. Implications for non-metropolitan brain drain are discussed.
    Keywords: population growth; migration; human capital; non-metropolitan counties; college
    JEL: R11 R23
    Date: 2010–10–01

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