nep-ure New Economics Papers
on Urban and Real Estate Economics
Issue of 2011‒04‒09
37 papers chosen by
Steve Ross
University of Connecticut

  1. Income Segregation and Suburbanization in France : a discrete choice approach By Florence Goffette-Nagot; Yves Schaeffer
  2. Macro and micro drivers of house price dynamics: An application to Dutch data By Gabriele Galati; Federica Teppa; Rob Alessie
  3. Housing risk and return: Evidence from a housing asset-pricing model By Karl Case; John Cotter; Stuart Gabriel
  4. Search Unemployment and New Economic Geography By vom Berge, Philipp
  5. Self-reinforcing effects between housing prices and credit. Evidence from Norway By André K. Anundsen and Eilev S. Jansen
  6. Auckland's Knowledge Economy: Australasian and European Comparisons By Grimes, Arthur; Le Vaillant, Jason; McCann, Philip
  7. Incentives, resources and the organization of the school system By Facundo Albornoz; Samuel Berlinski; Antonio Cabrales
  8. On the determinants of local tax rates: new evidence from Spain By Francisco J. Delgado; Santiago Lago-Peñas; Matías Mayor
  9. Caste, local networks and lucrative jobs: Evidence from rural Nepal By Hatlebakk, Magnus; Iversen, Vegard; Torsvik, Gaute
  10. The Spatial Distribution of Human Capital: Can It Really Be Explained by Regional Differences in Market Access? By Xavier Enrique López-Bazo; Burhan Can Karahasan
  11. Uncovering indicators of effective school management in South Africa using the National School Effectiveness Study By Stephen Taylor
  12. Regional Policy in a Multiregional Setting: When the Poorest are Hurt by Subsidies By Sheard, Nicholas
  13. Housing Tenure and Job Search Behaviour. A Different Analysis of the Impact of the UK Jobseeker’s Allowance By Francesco Arzilli; Andrea Morescalchi
  14. Performance assessment of Russian homeowners associations : The importance of being social By Polishchuk, Leonid; Borisova, Ekaterina
  15. Local Politics and Economic Geography By Berliant, Marcus; Tabuchi, Takatoshi
  16. The Effect of Older Siblings’ Literacy on School Entry and Primary School Progress in the Ethiopian Highlands By Lindskog, Annika
  17. A Comparative Anatomy of REITs and Residential Real Estate Indexes: Returns, Risks and Distributional Characteristics By John Cotter; Richard Roll
  18. The Evolution of House Price Distribution By OHNISHI Takaaki; MIZUNO Takayuki; SHIMIZU Chihiro; WATANABE Tsutomu
  19. The Regional Economic Development Potential and Constraints to Local Foods Development in the Midwest By Swenson, David A.
  20. How Far Do Children Move?: Spatial Distances After Leaving the Parental Home By Thomas Leopold; Ferdinand Geißler; Sebastian Pink
  21. Why Geographic Factors are Necessary in Development Studies By Ballinger, Clint
  22. Number of siblings and school achievement in sub Sahara Africa By KUEPIE Mathias; TENIKUE Michel; NOUETAGNI Samuel; MISANGUMUKINI Nicaise
  23. Does a Diversification Motive Influence Children’s School Entry in the Ethiopian Highlands? By Lindskog, Annika
  24. Implementing public-private partnerships in municipalities By Moszoro, Marian; Krzyzanowska, Magdalena
  25. School Tracking and Access to Higher Education Among Disadvantaged Groups By Ofer Malamud; Cristian Pop-Eleches
  26. Performance Measures for Complete, Green Streets: A Proposal for Urban Arterials in California By Macdonald, Elizabeth; Sanders, Rebecca; Anderson, Alia
  27. Universities and regional economic growth in Spanish regions By Néstor Duch-Brown; Javier García-Estévez; Martí Parellada-Sabata
  28. Shaping the formation of university-industry research collaborations: what type of proximity does really matter? By Pablo D'Este; Frederick Guy; Simona Iammarino
  29. What are the causes of educational inequalities and of their evolution over time in Europe? Evidence from Pisa By Veruska Oppedisano; Gilberto Turati
  30. Identity and Social Distance in Friendship Formation By de Marti, Joan; Zenou, Yves
  31. Second Homes and the Need for Policy Planning By Brida, Juan Gabriel; Osti, Linda; Santifaller, Esther
  32. Understanding Social Interactions: Evidence from the Classroom By Giacomo De Giorgi; Michele Pellizzari
  33. Do universities affect firms’ location decisions? Evidence from Spain By Néstor Duch-Brown; Javier García-Estévez
  34. If you want me to stay, pay By Xavier Peter Claeys
  35. Youth Unemployment and Crime: New Lessons Exploring Longitudinal Register Data By Grönqvist, Hans
  36. Measurement of GDP per capita and regional disparities in China, 1979−2009 By Masashi Hoshino
  37. Regional Growth in Europe: The Role of European and National Policies By Fernanda Llussa; Jose Mario Lopes

  1. By: Florence Goffette-Nagot (GATE Lyon Saint-Etienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS : UMR5824 - Université Lumière - Lyon II - École Normale Supérieure de Lyon); Yves Schaeffer (CEMAGREF - institut de recherche en sciences et technologies pour l'environnement - CEMAGREF)
    Abstract: This paper focuses on residential sorting by social and ethnic status in large French urban areas. Our objective is to assess the relative importance of two major determinants of segregation stressed by the economic literature (Bartolome and Ross, 2003 ; Brueckner et al., 1999) : (i) "Alonso sorting over space", due to the trade-off between land consumption and accessibility to the central city and (ii) "Tiebout sorting over jurisdictions", due to the taste for local public goods and by extension for all kinds of local public amenities (e.g. neighborhood externalities). Our methodology draws on Schmidheiny (2006). First, a conditional logit model is estimated for each urban area, in which moving households are assumed to sort based on jurisdiction distance to the central city and jurisdiction mean of households' incomes (as a proxy for the level of public amenities). Second, our estimation results are used to simulate the counterfactual residential patterns that would prevail if, alternatively, one or the other of these mechanisms were inactive (setting the coefficients of the corresponding variables to zero). The contribution of each mechanism to the observed social and ethnic segregation is finally appreciated by comparing the values of dissimilarity indexes computed on the basis of the counterfactual households distributions and on the observed households distribution. "Tiebout-sorting" emerges as the primary cause of social segregation among wage-earning households. On the contrary, "Alonso-sorting" appears to be the main driver of segregation between economically active and inactive households, as well as between Frenchcitizen and Foreign-citizen households.
    Keywords: Income segregation; Ethnic segregation; Suburbanization; Local amenities; Migrations; Conditional logit; French urban areas
    Date: 2011
  2. By: Gabriele Galati; Federica Teppa; Rob Alessie
    Abstract: What is the role of micro and macro factors in determining house prices? We address this question empirically by analysing survey data on housing and mortgages from the DNB Household Survey for the period 1993–2009. We focus on the determinants of house owners’ subjective assessment of the value of their house. We highlight three main findings. First, subjective house prices are strongly related to household-specific and house-specific factors, including year of construction, cohort, education level, income and wealth. Financing conditions – in particular the presence of a mortgage as well as the mortgage type, and the mortgage rate – play an important role. Second, we find that macro variables such as the long-term interest rate also influence to an important extent how households value their home. Third, there is evidence of “well behaved” dynamics of subjective house prices, both in terms of persistence and in terms of mean reversion, indicating that house prices tend to converge to their long run equilibrium value. Finally, our findings support a certain degree of heterogeneity and segmentation in subjective house prices, especially along the dimensions of geographical region and degree of urbanization, funding conditions, and income expectations.
    Keywords: House prices; survey data; panel analysis
    JEL: D14 E21 G11
    Date: 2011–03
  3. By: Karl Case; John Cotter; Stuart Gabriel
    Abstract: This paper investigates the risk-return relationship in determination of housing asset pricing. In so doing, the paper evaluates behavioral hypotheses advanced by Case and Shiller (1988, 2002, 2009) in studies of boom and post-boom housing markets. The paper specifies and tests a multi-factor housing asset pricing model. In that model, we evaluate whether the market factor as well as other measures of risk, including idiosyncratic risk, momentum, and MSA size effects, have explanatory power for metropolitan-specific housing returns. Further, we test the robustness of the asset pricing results to inclusion of controls for socioeconomic variables commonly represented in the house price literature, including changes in employment, affordability, and foreclosure incidence. We find a sizable and statistically significant influence of the market factor on MSA house price returns. Moreover we show that market betas have varied substantially over time. Also, results are largely robust to the inclusion of other explanatory variables, including standard measures of risk and other housing market fundamentals. Additional tests of model validity using the Fama-MacBeth framework offer further strong support of a positive risk and return relationship in housing. Our findings are supportive of the application of a housing investment risk-return framework in explanation of variation in metro-area cross-section and time-series US house price returns. Further, results strongly corroborate Case-Shiller survey research indicating the importance of speculative forces in the determination of U.S. housing returns.
    Date: 2011–03
  4. By: vom Berge, Philipp
    Abstract: This paper develops a general equilibrium geographical economics model which uses matching frictions on the labor market to generate regional unemployment disparities alongside the usual core-periphery pattern of industrial agglomeration. In the model, regional wage differentials do not only influence migration decisions of mobile workers, but also affect the bargaining process on local labor markets, leading to differences in vacancies and unemployment as well. In a setting with two regions, both higher or lower unemployment rates in the core region are possible equilibrium outcomes, depending on transport costs and the elasticity of substitution. Stylized facts suggest that both patterns are of empirical relevance.
    Keywords: Regional labor markets; New Economic Geography; job matching; unemployment
    JEL: F12 J61 J64 R12
    Date: 2011–03–28
  5. By: André K. Anundsen and Eilev S. Jansen (Statistics Norway)
    Abstract: The interaction between housing prices and household borrowing in Norway is estimated in a simultaneous setting in the long and the short run. The long run dependence is analyzed within a cointegrated vector autoregression in real housing prices, real disposable household income and real household debt, conditioning on the real after tax interest rate, the number of house transactions and the volume of housing capital. We identify two cointegrating equations which determine equilibrium housing prices and household debt, respectively. The long run equations are embedded in a system of two error-correction equations which is estimated simultaneously. The model yields meaningful short and long term effects when estimated on the sample 1986q2-2008q4 and impulse responses demonstrate that there are self reinforcing feedback effects between the two variables of interest.
    Keywords: Housing prices; household borrowing; financial accelerator
    JEL: E44 G21 G28
    Date: 2011–03
  6. By: Grimes, Arthur (Motu: Economic & Public Policy Research); Le Vaillant, Jason (Ministry of Economic Development, New Zealand); McCann, Philip (Waikato Management School, University of Waikato)
    Abstract: This paper examines one key theme of modern spatial economics relating to city development: Do the major cities within and across countries increasingly attract a disproportionate share of knowledge intensive economic activities? We describe trends in shares of knowledge intensive economic activities within five major New Zealand and five major Australian cities, and interpret these trends in light of modern economic geography theories. The paper is mainly descriptive, filling an information gap in relation to trends in knowledge intensity across New Zealand and Australian cities. We also compare developments in Auckland’s industry knowledge intensity with those in eight European comparator cities. Since 1991, Auckland’s share of employment within knowledge intensive sectors has increased at a faster pace than all four comparator New Zealand cities and all five Australian comparator cities. These trends indicate that intra-country agglomeration forces have more than offset the inter-country agglomeration forces for Auckland. However the other four New Zealand cities have experienced lower growth in their knowledge intensive sector shares than the five Australian cities, a result that is consistent with the existence of agglomeration forces acting across Australasia.
    Keywords: Agglomeration; knowledge intensity; Auckland
    JEL: R11 R12
    Date: 2011–03–30
  7. By: Facundo Albornoz; Samuel Berlinski; Antonio Cabrales
    Abstract: We study a model where student effort and talent interact with parental and teachers' investments, as well as with school system resources. The model is rich, yet sufficiently stylized to provide novel implications. We can show, for example, that an improvement in parental outside options will reduce parental and school effort, which are partially compensated through school resources. In this way we provide a rationale for the ambiguous existing empirical evidence on the effect of school resources. We also provide a novel microfoundation for peer effects, with empirical implications on welfare and on preferences for sorting across schools.
    Keywords: Education, Incentives, School resources, Parental involvement, School sorting, Peer effects
    JEL: I20 I21 I28 J24
    Date: 2011–03
  8. By: Francisco J. Delgado (University of Oviedo); Santiago Lago-Peñas (REDE, IEB and University of Vigo); Matías Mayor (University of Oviedo)
    Abstract: This paper studies the determinants of local tax rates. For the two main local taxes in Spain - the property tax and the motor vehicle tax - we test the existence of tax mimicking, yardstick competition and political trends in a sample of 2,713 municipalities. Using different spatial models, the results support the hypothesis of tax mimicking, with coefficients over 0.40. We also show the relevance of political variables such as the ideology of the incumbents and political fragmentation. The fact that incumbents with weaker political support display stronger mimicking behaviour is interpreted as evidence in favour of yardstick competition. Finally, we find incumbents mimic neighbouring municipalities ruled by the same political party, confirming the political trends hypothesis.
    Keywords: Local taxation, tax mimicking, yardstick competition, political trends
    JEL: C31 H71 H77
    Date: 2011
  9. By: Hatlebakk, Magnus (CMI (Chr. Michelsen Istitute)); Iversen, Vegard (Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration), PhD (Cambridge).); Torsvik, Gaute (University of Bergen)
    Abstract: Abstract: We study how local connections to persons in influential positions affect access to migrant jobs and government employment. In rural Nepal, it would not be surprising if social status strongly influenced the access to attractive labor market opportunities. This is not the case. Although much of the variation in migration can be attributed to wealth, education and social identity, household networks have a separate impact on external employment. Wellconnected households are more likely to get government jobs and appear to have favorable access to the manpower agencies and informal loans required to finance migration to the Persian Gulf or Malaysia.
    Keywords: Geographic labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers; Model Construction and Estimation; Regional Migration; Regional Markets; Population; Neighborhood Characteristics
    JEL: C51 J61 R23
    Date: 2011–01–30
  10. By: Xavier Enrique López-Bazo (Faculty of Economics, University of Barcelona); Burhan Can Karahasan (Istanbul Bilgi University,)
    Abstract: This paper tests the robustness of estimates of market access impact on regional variability in human capital, as previously derived in the NEG literature. Our hypothesis is that these estimates of the coefficient of market access, in fact, capture the effects of regional differences in the industrial mix and the spatial dependence in the distribution of human capital. Results for the Spanish provinces indicate that the estimated impact of market access vanishes and becomes non-significant once these two elements are included in the empirical analysis.
    Keywords: human capital, geography, market access, spatial dependence. JEL classification:C21, I21, R12,
    Date: 2011–02
  11. By: Stephen Taylor (Department of Economics, University of Stellenbosch)
    Abstract: For many poor South African children, who are predominantly located in the historically disadvantaged part of the school system, the ongoing low quality of education acts as a poverty trap by precluding them from achieving the level of educational outcomes necessary to be competitive in the labour market. An important question is the extent to which this low quality of education is attributable to poverty itself as opposed to other features of teaching and management that characterise these schools. The literature explaining schooling outcomes in South Africa has reached a consensus that additional educational resources are no guarantee of improved outcomes. While socio-economic status remains the most powerful determinant of educational outcomes, studies have typically struggled to isolate other school and teacher characteristics that consistently predict outcomes, leaving much of the variation in achievement unexplained. Several authors have pointed to an ineffable mix of management efficiency and teacher quality that must surely underlie this unexplained component. The National School Effectiveness Study (NSES) is the first large-scale panel study of educational achievement in South African primary schools. It examines contextually appropriate features of school management and teacher practice more thoroughly than other large sample surveys previously administered in South Africa. Using the NSES data, this paper identifies specific aspects of school organisation and teacher practice, such as the effective coverage of curriculum and completed exercises, which are associated with literacy and numeracy achievement and with the amount of learning that occurs within a year of schooling. Some suggestions are also made regarding the appropriate way to interpret these results for the purpose of policy-making.
    Keywords: National School Effectiveness Study (NSES), South Africa, education, education production function, school management, economics of education
    JEL: I20 I21 I30 O15
    Date: 2011
  12. By: Sheard, Nicholas (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm University)
    Abstract: Regional policies that seek to reduce economic inequalities between regions are common. These policies normally involve subsidies or transfers to the poorest regions. Over any given short-term horizon such subsidies serve to reduce inter-regional inequalities, but as they also affect migration patterns the long-term effects are less clear. This paper demonstrates using a three-region, general equilibrium model that subsidising the poorest region may be to the detriment of the periphery as a whole and even to the very region that receives the subsidy, if the subsidy draws firms away from a nearby region that would function better as a production centre. Though further research is needed to isolate the conditions under which such an effect would arise, the result has potentially important implications for the design of regional policy.
    Keywords: Regional policy; production externalities; agglomeration; multiregion model
    JEL: H29 R12 R13
    Date: 2011–03–28
  13. By: Francesco Arzilli; Andrea Morescalchi
    Abstract: This paper investigates the relation between job search effort and hous-ing tenure by focussing on the impact of the UK Jobseeker's Allowance reform introduced in the UK in 1996. Theory suggests that a tight-ening in job search requirements, as implied by this reform, raises movements off benefit of non-employed with low search intensity and this effect adjusts in size depending on the different housing tenure. Average Treatment Effect estimates confirm that the impact of the reform on the claimant outflow rate is related to housing tenure.
    Keywords: Jobseeker's Allowance, Unemployment Benefit, Job Search,Housing Tenure, Oswald Effect
    JEL: J68 R2
    Date: 2011–10–02
  14. By: Polishchuk, Leonid; Borisova, Ekaterina
    Abstract: Performance of Russian homeowners associations – non-profits established to manage common property in residential housing – is assessed using the stochastic frontier technique, which is a powerful tool of productivity analysis. Performance variations are explained by physical and social factors, prominent among them is the availability of social capital among tenants, required to resolve collective action problems and ensure accountability of managing bodies and outside contractors. Lack of civic capacity could be an obstacle to implementing community-governance solutions in residential housing, making homeowners associations dysfunctional or prone to capture by vested interests.
    Keywords: homeowners associations; non-profit organizations; common property; stochastic frontier; social capital
    JEL: P25 L31 C01
    Date: 2010–07
  15. By: Berliant, Marcus; Tabuchi, Takatoshi
    Abstract: We consider information aggregation in national and local elections when voters are mobile and might sort themselves into local districts. Using a standard model of private information for voters in elections in combination with a New Economic Geography model, agglomeration occurs for economic reasons whereas voter stratification occurs due to political preferences. We compare a national election, where full information equivalence is attained, with local elections in a three district model. A stable equilibrium accounting for both the economic and political sectors is shown to exist. Restricting to an example, we show that full information equivalence holds in only one of the three districts when transport cost is low. The important comparative static is that full information equivalence is a casualty of free trade. When trade is more costly, people tend to agglomerate for economic reasons, resulting in full information equivalence in the political sector. Under free trade, people sort themselves into districts, most of which are polarized, resulting in no full information equivalence in these districts. We examine the implications of the model using data on corruption in the legislature of the state of Alabama and in the Japanese Diet.
    Keywords: Information aggregation in elections; Informative voting; New economic geography; Local politics
    JEL: D82 D72 R12
    Date: 2011–03–22
  16. By: Lindskog, Annika (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: The effects of older sisters’ and brothers’ literacy on the annual school entry and primary school grade progress probabilities of boys and girls are estimated using within-household variation. Older siblings’ literacy has positive effects, especially for same-sex siblings. The literacy of older sisters appears to be more beneficial than that of older brothers, not least since it has positive effects on school entry among both boys and girls, and since it has positive effects also when the sister has left the household. There are positive effects both from literate older siblings who left school and from literate older siblings who are still in school. This suggests that within-household education spillovers, rather than time-varying credit constraints, explain the positive sibling-dependency, since with credit constraints children in school would compete over scarce resources. The positive effects on school progress are limited to same-sex siblings who are still present in the household, suggesting every-day interactions to be important.<p>
    Keywords: Primary education; Ethiopia; Within-Household; Spillovers; Credit-Constraints
    JEL: D13 I21
    Date: 2011–04–01
  17. By: John Cotter; Richard Roll
    Abstract: Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) are the only truly liquid assets related to real estate investments. We study the behavior of U.S. REITs over the past three decades and document their return characteristics. REITs have somewhat less market risk than equity; their betas against a broad market index average about .65. Decomposing their covariances into principal components reveals several strong factors. REIT characteristics differ to some extent from those of the S&P/Case-Shiller (SCS) residential real estate indexes. This is partly attributable to methods of index construction. Our examination of REITs suggests that investment in real estate is far more risky than what might be inferred from the widely-followed SCS series. REITs, unlike SCS series are forward looking, and this helps them in the prediction of SCS returns. REIT forecasts of SCS returns are reasonably precise over a number of periods.
    Date: 2011–03
  18. By: OHNISHI Takaaki; MIZUNO Takayuki; SHIMIZU Chihiro; WATANABE Tsutomu
    Abstract: Is the cross-sectional distribution of house prices close to a lognormal distribution, as is often assumed in empirical studies on house price indexes? How does the distribution evolve over time? To address these questions, we investigate the cross-sectional distribution of house prices in the Greater Tokyo Area. We find that house prices (Pi) are distributed with much fatter tails than a lognormal distribution and that the tail is quite close to that of a power-law distribution. We also find that house sizes (Si) follow an exponential distribution. These findings imply that size-adjusted house prices, defined by lnPi - aSi, should be normally distributed. We find that this is indeed the case for most of the sample period, but not the bubble era, during which the price distribution has a fat upper tail even after adjusting for size. The bubble was concentrated in particular areas in Tokyo, and this is the source of the fat upper tail.
    Date: 2011–03
  19. By: Swenson, David A.
    Abstract: This paper looks at practical limits to local foods production and consumption in the Upper Midwest.  It presumes that local foods production makes the most sense, and has the greatest profit potential, in relatively close proximity to dense urban demand.  The research demonstrates methods for determining county-level fresh fruit and vegetable production potentials for the states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Indian, and Iowa in light of the distribution of metropolitan areas with 250,000 residents or more within or nearby the region.  It also estimates the farm production-related total economic values that would accumulate were local foods production goals achieved in the region using input-output modeling tools.   A state-only analysis was also conducted for Iowa using smaller metropolitan areas and a shorter viable distance-to-market threshold to apply the larger study’s insights in a manner that might guide state-level decision making.  The research can be useful for helping to inform state policy developments as well as the location and extent of Cooperative Extension and other types of state and local services and production assistance designed to bolster or further investigate this emerging rural development topic.
    Keywords: local foods; impact analysis
    Date: 2011–03–30
  20. By: Thomas Leopold; Ferdinand Geißler; Sebastian Pink
    Abstract: Little is known about how far young adults move when they leave their parental home initially. We addressed this question using data from ten waves (2000 ¿ 2009) of the German Socioeconomic Panel Study on spatial distances calculated by the geo-coordinates of residential moves (N = 1,425). Linear regression models predicted young adults· moving distance by factors at the individual, family, household, and community level. Overall, spatial distances of initial moveouts were strikingly small with a median value of only 9.5 kilometers. Those who were welleducated, female, single, childless, had highly educated fathers and high parental household incomes moved across greater distances. The effect of young adults· education was moderated by the local community·s degree of urbanization, supporting the brain drain assertion. In line with developmental models of migration, our results further show that young adults stayed closer if the parental household was still located at their place of childhood. We found two interactions with gender: At the family level, daughters stayed closer when leaving a single-parent household. At the community level, women from Eastern Germany moved farther, suggesting that the surplus of men in the Eastern periphery is at least to some extent an outcome of initial migration decisions.
    Date: 2011
  21. By: Ballinger, Clint
    Abstract: This paper proposes that the resurgence of geographic factors in the study of uneven development is not due simply to the recurrent nature of intellectual fashions, nor necessarily because arguments that rely on geographic factors are less simplistic than before, nor because they avoid racialist, imperialistic, and deterministic forms they sometimes took in the past. Rather, this paper argues that geographic factors have been turned to once again because they are an indispensable part of explanation, playing a special role that has not been properly understood, a role especially crucial for the explanation of the inherently spatial questions that development studies seek to address. The paper is made up of two sections and an appendix. The first section discusses why geographic factors are necessary for explanations of uneven development with a brief example from the ‘institutions versus geography’ debate. The second section discusses why the reflexive rejection by social scientists of geographic and environmental factors is misguided, with a separate note on geography and geographers. The ideas in this paper were in part arrived at inductively while surveying instances where social scientists in some way attempt to account for real-world locations/distributions of social phenomena (as opposed to discussing a social theory or process aspatially or with its distribution taken as a starting point). A number of these are included with discussion as an appendix.
    Keywords: geographic determinism; environmental determinism; economic development; Daron Acemoglu; Jeffrey Sachs; Jared Diamond; explanation; exogenous factors; location; distribution; colonialism; biogeography;
    JEL: Z1 O10 N90 O15 O19 F54 A13 A12 O57 C21 B41
    Date: 2011–01
  22. By: KUEPIE Mathias; TENIKUE Michel; NOUETAGNI Samuel; MISANGUMUKINI Nicaise
    Abstract: This paper uses biographical data from Dakar and Yaounde, two big African cities, to study the link between the number of siblings and school attainment. The data describe all fertility events meet by parents and the sibling’s size structure of every child over time. The average sibling size effect is estimated first. Then, the sibling’s size at given age effect is estimated. The results show that, in Dakar, both the overall and age specific siblings size effect on education are negative and statistically significant. In Yaounde, the overall effect is not significant, but we observed negative effects at some schooling ages (between 14 and 16). This paper uses biographical data from Dakar and Yaounde, two big African cities, to study the link between the number of siblings and school attainment. The data describe all fertility events meet by parents and the sibling’s size structure of every child over time. The average sibling size effect is estimated first. Then, the sibling’s size at given age effect is estimated. The results show that, in Dakar, both the overall and age specific siblings size effect on education are negative and statistically significant. In Yaounde, the overall effect is not significant, but we observed negative effects at some schooling ages (between 14 and 16).
    Keywords: Education; siblings; Dakar; Yaounde
    Date: 2011–03
  23. By: Lindskog, Annika (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: Household-level diversification of human capital investments is investigated. A simple model is developed, followed by an empirical analysis using 2000-2007 data from the rural Amhara region of Ethiopia. Diversification would imply negative siblings’ dependency and be more important in more risk-averse households. Hence it is investigated if older siblings’ literacy has a more negative (smaller if positive) impact on younger siblings’ school entry in more risk-averse households. Results suggest diversification across brothers, but are not statistically strong, and with forces creating positive sibling dependency dominating over diversification.<p>
    Keywords: Diversification; Education; Ethiopia; Uncertainty
    JEL: D13 D81 I21
    Date: 2011–04–01
  24. By: Moszoro, Marian (IESE Business School); Krzyzanowska, Magdalena (Kozminski University)
    Abstract: Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) realize three critical strategic issues for improving the quality of urban services: the enhancement of governmental financing capabilities, the improvement of public investment efficiency, and the harnessing of consumer-orientated management expertise. Based on a sample of 20 projects embarked upon by the city of Warsaw, we examine the process of project selection, planning, and prerequisites for satisfactory completion. The paper contributes to the literature on the PPP pre-implementation process and offers a perspective on the potential of PPPs in emerging economies. Key policy recommendations: 1) central headquarters for coordination of planning process; 2) clear project selection criteria; 3) involvement of independent consulting companies to legitimate the process under subsequent administrations; 4) ex ante risk allocation and ex post performance measurement procedures; 5) pre-determined termination conditions; 6) determination to start the process and learn by doing, and 7) knowledge transfer and retention mechanisms.
    Keywords: Public Services; Public-Private Partnerships; Urban Development; Central and Eastern Europe; Emerging Markets;
    JEL: D73 H83 L32 L33 R51
    Date: 2011–02–09
  25. By: Ofer Malamud; Cristian Pop-Eleches
    Abstract: When students are tracked into vocational and academic secondary schools, access to higher education is usually restricted to those who completed an academic track. Postponing such tracking may increase university attendance among disadvantaged students if additional time in school enables them to catch up with their more privileged counterparts. However, if ability and expectations are fairly well set by an early age, postponing tracking during adolescence may not have much effect. This paper exploits an educational reform in Romania to examine the impact of postponing tracking on the proportion of disadvantaged students graduating from university using a regression discontinuity (RD) design. We show that, although students from poor, rural areas and with less educated parents were significantly more likely to finish an academic track and become eligible to apply for university after the reform, this did not translate into an increase in university completion. Our findings indicate that simply postponing tracking, without increasing the slots available in university, is not sufficient to improve access to higher education for disadvantaged groups.
    JEL: I21
    Date: 2011–03
  26. By: Macdonald, Elizabeth; Sanders, Rebecca; Anderson, Alia
    Abstract: This report contains five chapters, each with a number of sub-sections. Chapter I presents a summary of the research findings from the Literature Review and discusses their relevance and implications for urban arterials. Chapter II discusses the theoretical underpinnings of performance measurement and various approaches in the literature. It also profiles examples of “best practice†performance measures used by forward-thinking state transportation authorities to measure multimodal and “green†aspects of transportation system performance. Chapter III describes the federal, state, and agency policies and mandates that Caltrans is subject to relative to Complete Streets and environmental quality. Chapter IV presents the proposed Complete, Green Streets Performance Measure Framework, and includes discussion and recommendations related to setting targets and data collection. Finally, Chapter V provides conclusions and proposed next steps.
    Keywords: Urban Studies and Planning
    Date: 2010–07–01
  27. By: Néstor Duch-Brown (University of Barcelona & IEB); Javier García-Estévez (University of Barcelona & IEB); Martí Parellada-Sabata (University of Barcelona & IEB)
    Abstract: This paper examines the main contributions of universities to the economic growth of Spanish regions. It calculates the separate effects of the different university functions on the regional economy, namely the creation of human capital, research and technology transfer. It includes a panel data set with the key variables of university activities and their effects on the economy at provincial level. The econometric estimations are based on information for all 47 public universities and include 34 Spanish provinces. The empirical results suggest that the growth of regional GVA is positively correlated to both the human capital created by universities and the stock of university patents
    Keywords: regional economic development, universities, higher education, human capital, research, technology development
    JEL: R15 I23 O18
    Date: 2011
  28. By: Pablo D'Este; Frederick Guy; Simona Iammarino
    Abstract: Research collaborations between universities and industry (U-I) are considered to be one important channel of potential localised knowledge spillovers. These collaborations favour both intended and unintended flows of knowledge and facilitate learning processes between partners from different organisations. Despite the copious literature on localised knowledge spillovers, still little is known about the factors driving the formation of U-I research collaborations and, in particular, about the role that geographical proximity plays in the establishment of such relationships. Using collaborative research grants between universities and business firms awarded by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), in this paper we disentangle some of the conditions under which different kinds of proximity contribute to the formation of U-I research collaborations, focussing in particular on technological complementarity among the firms participating in such partnerships.
    Keywords: university-industry research collaborations, proximity, geography, industrial clustering, technological complementarity
    JEL: O31 O32 O33 R10
    Date: 2011–03
  29. By: Veruska Oppedisano (Marie Curie Research Fellow); Gilberto Turati (University of Torino & HERMES)
    Abstract: This paper provides evidence on the sources of differences in inequalities in educational scores in European Union member states, by decomposing them into their determining factors. Using PISA data from the 2000 and 2006 waves, the paper shows that inequalities emerge in all countries and in both period, but decreased in Germany, whilst they increased in France and Italy. Decomposition shows that educational inequalities do not only reflect background related inequality, but especially schools’ characteristics. The findings allow policy makers to target areas that may make a contribution in reducing educational inequalities. However, they appear to exert a remarkable impact on excess spending.
    Keywords: Education expenditures, educational inequalities, Oaxaca decomposition.
    JEL: I2 I38
    Date: 2011
  30. By: de Marti, Joan (Universitat Pompeu Fabra and Barcelona GSE); Zenou, Yves (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm University)
    Abstract: We analyze a network formation model where agents belong to different communities. Both individual benefits and costs depend on direct as well as indirect connections. Benefits of an indirect connection decrease with distance in the network while the cost of a link depends on the type of agents involved. Two individuals from the same community always face a low linking cost and the cost of forming a relationship for two individuals of different communities diminishes with the rate of exposure of each of them to the other community. We derive a number of results with regard to equilibrium networks. In particular, socialization among the same type of agents can be weak even if the within-type link cost is very low and oppositional identity patterns can arise for a wide range of parameters. Our model also suggests that policies aiming at reducing segregation are socially desirable only if they reduce the within-community cost differential by a sufficiently large amount.
    Keywords: networks; identity; homophily; social norms
    JEL: D85 J15
    Date: 2011–04–01
  31. By: Brida, Juan Gabriel; Osti, Linda; Santifaller, Esther
    Abstract: For years second home tourism has been an issue of discussion between tourist experts, real estate agents and politicians in both Mediterranean countries and Alpine destinations, however it has not raised much concern in academic circles. The aim of this paper is to analyze the second home phenomenon in order to acquire a better understanding of the overall situation and give an insight into the aspects and needs for policy planning. For this purpose South Tyrol has been taken as a case study, and a comprehensive overview of the situation has been determined through both quantitative and qualitative investigation on opinions and attitudes of second home owners, local residents, politicians, real estate agents. The outcome of this paper is a holistic picture of the phenomenon, which examines the positive and negative impacts and shows the need for public regulation through land use planning.
    Keywords: Second Homes; Policy Planning; Economic Impacts; Tourism Development
    JEL: O1 M1 L83
    Date: 2011–04–15
  32. By: Giacomo De Giorgi; Michele Pellizzari
    Abstract: There is a large literature on social interactions and still little is known about the economic mechanisms leading to the high level of clustering in behavior that is so commonly observed in the data. In this paper we present a model in which agents are allowed to interact according to three distinct mechanisms, and we derive testable implications on the mean and the variance of the outcomes within and across groups. The empirical tests allow us to distinguish which mechanism(s) generates the observed patterns in the data. In our application we study the performance of undergraduate students and we find that social interactions take the form of mutual insurance. Such a result bears crucial policy implications for all those situations in which social interactions are important, from teamwork to class formation in education and co-authorship in academic research.
    Date: 2011
  33. By: Néstor Duch-Brown (University of Barcelona & IEB); Javier García-Estévez (University of Barcelona & IEB)
    Abstract: Human capital, scientific research, and technology are the three chief mechanisms promoting knowledge spillovers from universities to firms. Based on a study of the impact of Spain’s 1983 University Reform Act (LRU), which opened the door to the foundation of new universities and faculties, this paper examines whether university (or faculty) location affects the creation of new firms within a given province. We conclude that the foundation of science and social science faculties has had a marked impact on the creation of firms.
    Keywords: universities, firm location, spillovers, poisson regression
    JEL: I23 O31 R12 R39 C23
    Date: 2011
  34. By: Xavier Peter Claeys (Faculty of Economics, University of Barcelona)
    Abstract: Devolution of political power is constantly on the political agenda in both Italy and Spain. Fiscal policy in these countries has granted specific privileges to some regions. Valle d’Aosta/Vallée d’Aoste (VdA) and País Vasco/Euskadi (PV) have an extensive say over spending decisions, and receive nearly all regional tax revenues. Although both VdA and PV are among the richest regions in each country, both are net beneficiaries of the fiscal equalisation system. This preferential treatment is the outcome of a fiscal system with limits on taxing power and debt issuance, and is meant as a compensation for the lack of autonomy. It so prevents calls for more fiscal autonomy, or even outright secession. The economic effects of this asymmetric federalism are negative. Although partial equalisation reduces excessive redistribution built in the fiscal equalisation system, more autonomy could pay off with more efficient government. Asymmetric federalism moreover creates a political impasse in the negotiation of a more efficient tax system and financing arrangement.
    Keywords: fiscal federalism, equalisation, secession, Valle d’Aosta, País Vasco. JEL classification:H70, H73, H77
    Date: 2011–02
  35. By: Grönqvist, Hans (Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the link between youth unemployment and crime using a unique combination of labor market and conviction data spanning the entire Swedish working-age population over an extended period. The empirical analysis reveals large and statistically significant effects of unemployment on several types of crime. The magnitude of the effect is similar across different subgroups of the population. In contrast to most previous studies, the results suggest that joblessness explain a meaningful portion of why male youths are overrepresented among criminal offenders. I discuss reasons for the discrepancy in the results and show that that the use of aggregated measures of labor market opportunities in past studies is likely to capture offsetting general equilibrium effects. Contrary to predictions by economic theory the effect of unemployment on crime is not mediated by income. Instead, an analysis of crimes committed during weekdays versus weekends provides suggestive evidence that unemployment increases the time that individuals have to engage in crime.
    Keywords: Unemployment; Delinquency; Age-crime profile
    JEL: J62 K42
    Date: 2011–03–30
  36. By: Masashi Hoshino (Slavic Research Center, Hokkaido University and RIEB, Kobe University Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration, Kobe University)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes provincial GDP per capita disparities in China from 1979 to 2009. Provincial GDP per capita of official statistical materials have several problems such as data correctness and reliability, because the data are composed of the huji population and the changzhu population. The differences both population data are inter-province migration patterns. We compare result using our modified changzhu population GDP per capita data with results using official statistical materials. The empirical results as follows: (1) Previous studies since the 1990s have overestimated inter-province disparities; (2) inter-province disparities decrease from 2005; (3) Western region increase in intra-regional disparities since 2002. These results suggest that we should use provincial GDP per capita statistics more carefully.
    Keywords: Regional Disparities; GDP per capita; Statistics; China
    JEL: E01 O18 O53 R12 R23
    Date: 2011–03
  37. By: Fernanda Llussa; Jose Mario Lopes
    Abstract: We conduct a systematic study of the impact of European Union (EU) regional policies on regional economic growth that controls for national policies and geographic characteristics. Special care is taken in distinguishing between the impact of EU policies and of national policies on economic growth. Our empirical study tries to answer two different questions. First, is there convergence across EU regions, and if so, do regions converge to a common European steady-state or to a national one? Second, how do European and national policies affect regional growth? We find evidence of regional convergence at the national level but not at the European level. In addition we find that trade openness at the national level is associated with regional convergence while European regional policies contribute, though weakly, to regional convergence. Our results suggest that policies that foster market integration – and convergence to a common steady-state - such as the promotion of labour and capital movements across countries and common regulatory policies are as important for European-wide regional convergence as regional structural funds. JEL codes: D30, R11
    Keywords: National Policies, European Union Policies, regional growth
    Date: 2011

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