nep-ure New Economics Papers
on Urban and Real Estate Economics
Issue of 2012‒06‒13
43 papers chosen by
Steve Ross
University of Connecticut

  1. Urban Regions in Europe – Preconditions and Strategies for Growth and Development in the Global Economy By Gråsjö, Urban; Karlsson, Charlie
  2. Does fiscal coopération increase local tax rates in urban areas? By Sylvie Charlot; Sonia Paty; Virginie Piguet
  3. Self-Organizing Maps and the US Urban Spatial Structure By Daniel Arribas-Bel; Charles R. Schmidt
  4. Why did so many people make so many ex post bad decisions?: the causes of the foreclosure crisis By Christopher L. Foote; Kristopher S. Gerardi; Paul S. Willen
  5. Is the Price Right? Assessing Estimates of Cadastral Values for Bogotá, Colombia By Luc Anselin; Nancy Lozano-Gracia
  6. Trust and innovation activity in European regions: A geographic instrumental variables approach By Schild, Christopher-Johannes
  7. Spatial Fixed Effects and Spatial Dependence By Luc Anselin; Daniel Arribas-Bel
  8. Knowledge flows, knowledge externalities and regional economic development By Karlsson, Charlie; Gråsjö, Urban
  9. Irish Housing: A Role for Loan-to-Value Limits? By Duffy, David
  10. The symbolic universe of Cyberjaya, Malaysia By Evers, Hans-Dieter; Nordin, Ramli
  11. Home-mortgage lending trends in New England in 2010 By Ana Patricia Muñoz
  12. A mechanism for booms and busts in housing prices By Hillebrand, Marten; Kikuchi, Tomoo
  13. Local governments’ fiscal policy as a factor of urban development – evidence from Poland By Waśniewski, Krzysztof
  14. Boom and Burst in Housing Market with Heterogeneous Agents By Alessandro Spelta; Guido Ascari; Nicolò Pecora
  15. Export decisions of services firms between agglomeration effects and market-entry costs By Henk Kox
  16. Neighborhood dynamics and the distribution of opportunity By Dionissi Aliprantis; Daniel Carroll
  17. Meeting Urban Housing Needs: Do People Really Come to the Nuisance? By Brooks M. Depro; Christopher Timmins; Maggie O'Neil
  18. Housing price forecastability: A factor analysis By Lasse Bork; Stig V. Møller
  19. Isolated Capital Cities, Accountability and Corruption: Evidence from US States By Campante, Filipe R.; Do, Quoc-Anh
  20. Policy Options for Incremental Housing: Report on a Practice Workshop and Round Table Policy Discussion By Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
  21. Clean-Tech Clustering as an Engine for Local Development: The Negev Region, Israel By Jonathan Potter; Gabriela Miranda; Philip Cooke; Karen Chapple; Dieter Rehfeld; Gregory Theyel; Dan Kaufmann; Miki Malul; Mosi Rosenboim
  22. "Congestion, Technical Returns, and the Minimum Efficient Scales of Local Public Expenditures: An Empirical Analysis for Japanese Cities" By Masayoshi Hayashi
  23. Internet Offer Prices for Flats and Their Determinants: A Cross Section of Large European Cities By Konstantin A. Kholodilin
  24. Late starters or excluded generations? A cohort analysis of catch up in homeownership in England By Renata Bottazzi; Thomas Crossley; Matthew Wakefield
  25. The path- and place-dependent nature of scientific knowledge production in biotech 1986-2008 By Gaston Heimeriks; Ron Boschma
  26. Exploratory spatial data analysis using Stata By Maurizio Pisati
  27. Predatory Lending and the Subprime Crisis By Agarwal, Sumit; Ben-David, Itzhak; Amromin, Gene; Chomsisengphet, Souphala; Evanoff, Douglas D.
  28. Spatial competition in the French supermarket industry By Stéphane Turolla
  29. Finite Sample Properties of Moran's I Test for Spatial Autocorrelation in Probit and Tobit Models - Empirical Evidence By P. Amaral; L. Anselin
  30. Estimating the Price of Rents in Regional Price Parties By Troy Martin; Bettina Aten; Eric Figueroa
  31. Estimation of losses due to the existence of monopolies in urban bus transport in Poland By Wolański, Michał
  32. Class size, type of exam and student achievement By Madsen, Erik Strøjer
  33. Networks and selection in international migration to Spain By Neubecker, Nina; Smolka, Marcel; Steinbacher, Anne
  34. A macroeconomic analysis of the land market in the count of Flanders and the duchy of Brabant. (fifteenth and sixteenth century) By De Vijlder, Nicolas
  35. Does Decentralization Facilitate Access to Poverty-Related Services? Evidence from Benin By Emilie Caldeira; Martial Foucault; Grégoire Rota-Graziosi
  36. Distance and Political Boundaries: Estimating Border Effects under Inequality Constraints. By Fernando Borraz; Alberto Cavallo; Roberto Rigobon; Leandro Zipitría
  37. From SpaceStat to CyberGIS: Twenty Years of Spatial Data Analysis Software By Luc Anselin
  38. Revisiting Wal-Mart’s Impact on Iowa Small Town Retail: Twenty-Five Years Later By Stone, Kenneth E.; Artz, Georgeanne M.
  39. Estimating the Local Economic Impacts of University Activity Using a Bill of Goods Approach By Zoë O. Ambargis; Thomas McComb; Carol A. Robbins
  40. Don’t Drink and… Avoid Risky Sex of Your Peers: The Influence of Alcohol Consumption of Opposite-Gender Peers on Youth Risky Sexual Behavior By Pertold, Filip
  41. Care or Cash? The Effect of Child Care Subsidies on Student Performance. By Black, Sandra; Devereux, Paul J.; Løken, Katrine V.; Salvanes, Kjell G.
  42. Spoilt for Choice: Explaining the location choice of Turkish Transnationals By Kayam, Saime S.; Hisarcıklılar, Mehtap; Kayalıca, Özgür
  43. Property Tax in Ireland: Key Choices By Keane, Claire; Walsh, John R.; Callan, Tim; Savage, Michael

  1. By: Gråsjö, Urban (University West); Karlsson, Charlie (Jönköping International Business School)
    Abstract: Nowadays it is well-established fact that urban regions and large ones in particular are crucial for promoting creativity, innovation and subsequent economic growth in the economy. There-fore, it is important to focus policies in Europe on how to improve the existing conditions of urban regions so they can function as engines of economic growth. The purpose of this paper is to discuss policies needed to meet the current urban challenges and to make urban regions in Europe more competitive. A problem with current spatial policies at the EU-level as well as at the national level in most countries is that the policies mainly ignore functional urban re-gions and instead focus on administrative regions. A reason for this is that there is often no political body with authority over the whole functional urban region. In this paper, we present ideas for a new type of spatial policies in Europe focusing on innovation and growth. For in-stance, there is a need to take measures to increase the density of population and companies in functional urban regions and to improve transport infrastructure to increase the geographical extension of functional regions. There is also a need to develop more urban regions into real innovation nodes by developing more elite universities with a proper R&D funding and a ca-pacity to compete with the best universities in the US. Another focus must be on increased investments in higher education as well as policies aiming at increasing the attractiveness of urban regions in terms of housing infrastructure and supply of amenities.
    Keywords: Urban regions; Urban policy; Growth; Innovation; Europe
    JEL: O18 R11 R58
    Date: 2012–06–01
  2. By: Sylvie Charlot (GAEL - Economie Appliquée de Grenoble - INRA : UR1215 - Université Pierre Mendès-France - Grenoble II); Sonia Paty (GATE Lyon Saint-Etienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS : UMR5824 - Université Lumière - Lyon II - École Normale Supérieure - Lyon); Virginie Piguet (CESAER - Centre d'Economie et Sociologie Appliquées à l'Agriculture et aux Espaces Ruraux - INRA : UMR1041)
    Abstract: The main purpose of this paper is to assess the effects of fiscal cooperation on local taxation in a decentralized country, using the French experience in urban municipalities. We estimate a model of tax setting for local business tax using spatial and dynamic econometric techniques, for the period 1993-2003 and an unbalanced data set. As predicted by the theory, we find that reducing the number of municipalities is likely to limit tax competition and, as a consequence, increase local business tax rates.
    Keywords: fiscal cooperation; tax competition; vertical externalities; local business tax
    Date: 2012–06–01
  3. By: Daniel Arribas-Bel; Charles R. Schmidt (GeoDa Center for Geospatial Analysis and Computation; Arizona State University)
    Abstract: This article considers urban spatial structure in US cities using a multi- dimensional approach. We select six key variables (commuting costs, den- sity, employment dispersion/concentration, land-use mix, polycentricity and size) from the urban literature and define measures to quantify them. We then apply these measures to 359 metropolitan areas from the 2000 US Census. The adopted methodological strategy combines two novel techniques for the social sciences to explore the existence of relevant pat- terns in such multi-dimensional datasets. Geodesic self-organizing maps (SOM) are used to visualize the whole set of information in a meaningful way, while the recently developed clustering algorithm of the max-p is applied to draw boundaries within the SOM and analyze which cities fall into each of them. JEL C45, R0, R12, R14. Keywords Urban spatial structure, self-organizing maps, US metropolitan areas
    Date: 2011
  4. By: Christopher L. Foote; Kristopher S. Gerardi; Paul S. Willen
    Abstract: This paper presents 12 facts about the mortgage market. The authors argue that the facts refute the popular story that the crisis resulted from financial industry insiders deceiving uninformed mortgage borrowers and investors. Instead, they argue that borrowers and investors made decisions that were rational and logical given their ex post overly optimistic beliefs about house prices. The authors then show that neither institutional features of the mortgage market nor financial innovations are any more likely to explain those distorted beliefs than they are to explain the Dutch tulip bubble 400 years ago. Economists should acknowledge the limits of our understanding of asset price bubbles and design policies accordingly.
    Keywords: Mortgage loans ; Global financial crisis ; Housing - Prices ; Foreclosure
    Date: 2012
  5. By: Luc Anselin (GeoDa Center for Geospatial Analysis and Computation; Arizona State University); Nancy Lozano-Gracia (GeoDa Center for Geospatial Analysis and Computation; Arizona State University)
    Abstract: Hedonic house price models are increasingly applied in the process of mass appraisal, in which econometric specifications are used to obtain automated valuation of properties for taxation purposes. The predictive quality of such models is important, since it directly affects the revenue stream of local authorities. In this paper, we assess the relative predictive performance of different model specifications used in automated valuation. Specifically, we focus on the issue of spatial heterogeneity by comparing models that utilize different definitions of housing submarkets. In addition, we consider the inclusion of “spatial†explanatory variables in the form of distance to various amenities as computed from a GIS. We apply this to data from the city of Bogot Ìa, Colombia, a pioneer in the application of mass appraisal techniques in a developing country context. We find that specifications that include the submarkets improve predictive performance and that the inclusion of the spatial variables is superior to the traditional models of homogenous zones. However, even the best models are still characterized by relatively poor performance in the form of a high degree of overprediction of the house value. In addition, the predictive performance of the models varied by socio-economic stratum in the city, which suggests that the dynamics of the housing markets in these strata would require closer and separate attention. These results may provide further guidance to enhance mass appraisal practice in the city of Bogot Ìa as well as potentially other Latin American cities.
    Date: 2011
  6. By: Schild, Christopher-Johannes
    Abstract: For a cross-section of 123 European regions, a positive causal effect of generalised trust on innovation activity is identified using a set of geographic instrumental variables from climate and soil data. The geographic instrumental variables are defined and discussed. The popular explanation for spatial clustering of innovation by 'interregional knowledge spillovers' is empirically tested. It is found that spatial clustering of innovation activity can be better explained by a positive in uence of trust on innovation combined with the fact that neighboring regions typically show similar levels of trust. --
    Keywords: Social Capital,Trust,Innovation,Regional Economics,Europe
    JEL: O31 R11 R12 Z13
    Date: 2012
  7. By: Luc Anselin (GeoDa Center for Geospatial Analysis and Computation; Arizona State University); Daniel Arribas-Bel
    Abstract: We investigate the common conjecture in applied econometric work that the inclusion of spatial fixed effects in a regression specification re- moves spatial dependence. We demonstrate analytically and by means of a series of simulation experiments how evidence of the removal of spatial autocorrelation by spatial fixed effects may be spurious when the true DGP takes the form of a spatial lag or spatial error dependence. In addition, we also show that only in the special case where the dependence is group-wise, with all observations in the same group as neighbors of each other, do spatial fixed effects correctly remove spatial correlation.
    Keywords: spatial autocorrelation, spatial econometrics, spatial externalities, spatial fixed effects, spatial interaction, spatial weights
    Date: 2011
  8. By: Karlsson, Charlie (Jönköping International Business School); Gråsjö, Urban (University West)
    Abstract: New knowledge generated by an economic agent in a region will tend over time to flow to other economic agents in the same region but also to economic agents in other regions. It is quite common in the literature to use the concept of knowledge spillovers for such knowledge flows, irrespective of whether they are intended or non-intended. The potential for intra-re-gional knowledge spillover effects depends on the volume and character of the generation on new knowledge in each region as well as of the general characteristics of the individual re-gional economic milieu, i.e., those location attributes, which are regionally trapped and which include how well integrated it is with other regions. The larger this potential, the higher the probability that firms dependent upon knowledge spillovers will locate there and the higher probability that entrepreneurs will take advantage of this potential to launch innovations and to create new knowledge-based firms. To the extent that firms and entrepreneurs can enjoy these knowledge spillovers, they represent an externality or more specifically a knowledge externality in the regional economy. Great importance is in the literature attributed to knowledge spillovers and knowledge exter-nalities as drivers of regional economic development. Some authors, for example, claim that regional variations in localised knowledge spillovers are one of the main reasons behind re-gional variations in innovation performance. Against this background, the purpose of this chapter is, based upon a general characterization of knowledge flows, to analyse the character of knowledge externalities and, in particular, their sources, their economic nature, their recipients, their mechanisms and channels, their geographic reach, and their economic conse-quences generally and for regional economic development in particular.
    Keywords: Knowledge flows; Knowledge externalities; Knowledge spillovers; Regional growth
    JEL: O18 R11 R12
    Date: 2012–06–01
  9. By: Duffy, David
    Date: 2012–02
  10. By: Evers, Hans-Dieter; Nordin, Ramli
    Abstract: This paper analyses how various actors have used potent urban symbols to assert their vision of a modern, globalized Malay identity in the construction of the recently founded knowledge city of Cyberjaya, part of the flagship Multimedia Super Corridor project. As the state controls both the land and the urban planning process it has attempted to impose its own particularistic vision of Malaysian society on urban space and urban structures. This is demonstrated through an analysis of the discursive vision behind Cyberjaya, the logos of government corporations, the use of architectural forms and motifs, and the treatment of urban space itself. The discussion suggests the spatial and symbolic universe of Cyberjaya draws on both patterns of ‘traditional’ Malay life as well a projected vision of a modernized Malay identity that resonates with a globalized Islam. This generates contestations in which other possible imaginings of Cyberjaya’s symbolic space become possible.
    Keywords: urban development; urban symbols; urban economy; identity; knowledge; development; Malaysia
    JEL: O18 Z1 N9 D8 R5
    Date: 2012–05–10
  11. By: Ana Patricia Muñoz
    Abstract: This brief analysis of home-mortgage lending trends in New England is based on data collected under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA). HMDA provides information on mortgage lending trends and includes data by loan purpose, type of loan, income, and the race and ethnicity of borrowers. In this report we focus on home-purchase and refinance loans in New England.
    Keywords: Mortgage loans - New England
    Date: 2012
  12. By: Hillebrand, Marten; Kikuchi, Tomoo
    Abstract: We study an exchange economy with overlapping generations of consumers who derive utility from consuming a non-durable commodity and housing. A banking sector offers loans to finance housing. We provide a complete characterization of the equilibrium dynamics which alternates between an expansive regime where housing prices increase and banks expand loans and a contractive regime associated with decreasing housing values and shrinking credit volume. Regime switches occur even under small but persistent income changes giving rise to large and recurrent booms and busts in housing prices not reflecting changes in fundamentals. --
    Keywords: OLG,Housing prices,Credit volume,Boom-bust scenarios,Regime switching
    JEL: C62 E32 G21
    Date: 2012
  13. By: Waśniewski, Krzysztof
    Abstract: The paper explores the issue of urban development in the context of fiscal crisis. A model of municipal governance is introduced, explaining how social agents’ individual strategies shape the accumulation of debt by local governments. Empirical investigation, in a sample of big Polish cities, is presented as an illustration of the model. The conclusion is twofold. Firstly, the extent of municipal debt should definitely be considered as an indicator of quality in municipal governance, and, that real accumulation of municipal debt is justifiable only on the short run, and when the given city grows significantly in demographic terms. Secondly, the old institutionalism is a good theoretical framework for studying municipal, fiscal policy, as it emphasises the importance of habits and subjective consistency in individual strategies.
    Keywords: local governments; fiscal policy; urban development
    JEL: H7 H3
    Date: 2012–01–10
  14. By: Alessandro Spelta (Department of Economics and Business, University of Pavia); Guido Ascari (Department of Economics and Business, University of Pavia); Nicolò Pecora (Catholic university of Piacenza)
    Abstract: We study the housing market using a partial “dis”-equilibrium model in which the rational expectations hypothesis is relaxed in favor of an agent-based approach. The chartist-fundamentalist mechanism allows for the behavioral foundation of the expectations, the endogenous development of bubbles and contributes to replicate the recent house price dynamics. We also analyze the role of the interest rate during the boom and, anchoring the interest rate to the change in house price, we investigate the possibility to reduce the volatility and the distortion in the price dynamics.
    Date: 2012–05
  15. By: Henk Kox
    Abstract: <p>The paper tests the role of agglomeration effects on the export decision of services firms. Recent theories on trade with heterogeneous firms predict that export participation goes along with sunk market-entry costs. </p><p>Only the more productive firms will be able to overcome these sunk costs. This leads to a process of - ex ante - self selection. These predictions are tested for the services industry, with due account for the possible role of agglomeration effects in large-city areas.</p><p>Standard empirical tests of the new trade models consistently find productivity-based ex ante self selection by exporters, and this effect is mostly explained by unobserved sunk entry costs that exporters have to absorb in new foreign markets. Recent research by urban economists (e.g. Combes et al., 2012) suggests, however, that operating in large-city areas also goes along with positive productivity sorting. Ignoring this leads to upwardly biased estimates of the effect of foreign market entry costs. A large set of micro data for establishments in Dutch services is used to investigate this hypothesis.</p><p>I find evidence that positive productivity self-selection is based on the combined effects of agglomeration and anticipated market-entry cost for export starters. This effect is strongest in markets with more or less homogeneous products. I also find evidence that the productivity self-selection effect (of exporters compared to non-traders) is stronger in non-urban areas and smaller agglomerations.</p>
    JEL: R12 D4 F12 L8
    Date: 2012–06
  16. By: Dionissi Aliprantis; Daniel Carroll
    Abstract: This paper uses an overlapping-generations dynamic general equilibrium model of residential sorting and intergenerational human capital accumulation to investigate effects of neighborhood externalities. In the model, households choose where to live and how much to invest toward the production of their child’s human capital. The return on the parent’s investment is determined in part by the child’s ability and in part by an externality from the average human capital in their neighborhood. We use the model to test a prominent hypothesis about the concentration of poverty within racially-segregated neighborhoods (Wilson 1987). We first impose segregation on a model with two neighborhoods and match the model steady state to income and housing data from Chicago in 1960. Next, we lift the restriction on moving and compute the new steady state and corresponding transition path. The transition implied by the model qualitatively supports Wilson’s hypothesis: high-income residents of the low-average-human-capital neighborhood move out, reducing the returns to investment in their old neighborhood. Sorting increases citywide human capital, but it also produces congestion in the high-income neighborhood, increasing the average cost of housing. As a result, average welfare decreases by 2.2 percent of steady state consumption, and the loss is greatest for those initially in the low-income neighborhood.
    Keywords: Housing policy ; Population ; Wealth ; Equilibrium (Economics) - Mathematical models ; Human capital
    Date: 2012
  17. By: Brooks M. Depro; Christopher Timmins; Maggie O'Neil
    Abstract: Understanding the forces that lead to correlations between pollution exposure, poverty, and race is crucial to the formation of sound environmental justice (EJ) policy. In particular, what are the roles of disproportionate siting of pollution sources versus post-siting housing market dynamics (e.g., “white flight”)? Empirical analysis of post-siting dynamics has yielded mixed evidence. We demonstrate that this is because the models traditionally used to analyze it are not capable of identifying individual responses to pollution exposure. We address this limitation in two ways. First, we show how additional structure can be used along with traditional EJ data to recover behavioral parameters describing market dynamics. Second, we show how market dynamics can be directly observed using a new and distinctive data set that describes the decisions of individual homebuyers and details their circumstances (including pollution exposure) both before and after their moves. An application of the first approach shows that whites are more likely to flee TRI exposure in Los Angeles County than are other minority groups – particularly Hispanics, who constitute a plurality and the largest group of people of color. The second approach shows that whites are both more likely to flee and less likely to come to the nuisance, compared with all other groups (particularly Hispanics). Importantly, these results contrast with those of a traditional EJ analysis, which fails to provide any consistent evidence of post-siting dynamics. If the moving patterns we recover with our two models persist over time, we would expect to see higher percentages of minority residents (particularly Hispanics) living in closer proximity to L.A. County TRI plants, lending support to the post-siting market dynamics hypothesis.
    JEL: Q5 Q52 Q53 R3
    Date: 2012–05
  18. By: Lasse Bork (Aalborg University); Stig V. Møller (Aarhus University and CREATES)
    Abstract: We examine US housing price forecastability using a common factor approach based on a large panel of 122 economic time series. We find that a simple three-factor model generates an explanatory power of about 50% in one-quarter ahead in-sample forecasting regressions. The predictive power of the model stays high at longer horizons. The estimated factors are strongly statistically signi?cant according to a bootstrap resampling method which takes into account that the factors are estimated regressors. The simple three-factor model also contains substantial out-of-sample predictive power and performs remarkably well compared to both autoregressive benchmarks and computational intensive forecast combination models.
    Keywords: House prices, Forecasting, Factor model, Principal components, Macroeconomic factors, Factor forecast combination, Bootstrap
    JEL: C53 E3 G1
    Date: 2012–05–25
  19. By: Campante, Filipe R. (Harvard University); Do, Quoc-Anh (Singapore Management University)
    Abstract: We show that isolated capital cities are robustly associated with greater levels of corruption across US states. In particular, this is the case when we use the variation induced by the exogenous location of a state's centroid to instrument for the concentration of population around the capital city. We then show that different mechanisms for holding state politicians accountable are also affected by the spatial distribution of population: newspapers provide greater coverage of state politics when their audiences are more concentrated around the capital, and voter turnout in state elections is greater in places that are closer to the capital. Consistent with lower accountability, there is also evidence that there is more money in state-level political campaigns in those states with isolated capitals. We find that the role of media accountability helps explain the connection between isolated capitals and corruption. In addition, we provide some evidence that this pattern is also associated with lower levels of public good spending and outcomes.
    JEL: D72 D73 L82 R12 R50
    Date: 2012–05
  20. By: Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
    Abstract: Two recent longitudinal field studies of incremental housing were financed by the IDB. The studies' findings describe the building strategies of households over time and compare settlement types to reach conclusions. El Salvador's 40 years of experience with incremental housing is a particularly important and rich laboratory, which offers a valuable opportunity for international housing practitioners to see firsthand the many facets and lessons in conjunction with the study results. IDB therefore organized a workshop in San Salvador during November of 2011 to discuss results in the field and exchange ideas with local practitioners and policymakers on how programs can form part of national housing policy.
    Keywords: Rural & Urban Development :: Housing
    Date: 2012–05
  21. By: Jonathan Potter; Gabriela Miranda; Philip Cooke; Karen Chapple; Dieter Rehfeld; Gregory Theyel; Dan Kaufmann; Miki Malul; Mosi Rosenboim
    Abstract: This report summarises the findings of a case study project on growing clean-tech cluster activity in the Negev region of Israel as part of a series of reviews on Entrepreneurship, SMEs and Local Development carried out by the Local Economic and Employment Development (LEED) Committee of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). <P>The review examines entrepreneurship, SMEs and local development in the Negev in the south of Israel, where there is strong potential for the growth of significant clean-tech industry cluster activity, involving a critical mass of firms, human capital, research organisations, support infrastructure and associated formal and informal linkages. <P>This report looks at the ways in which such capacity can be strengthened by public policies, including investment in centres of research excellence and specialised testing facilities, creation of spaces for innovation exchange, and the introduction of a green strategy and eco-city approach. The analysis provides guidance and policy recommendations on how best to support the emergence and expansion of clean-tech cluster activity that will enhance economic development capacity in the region while contributing to national green growth objectives.
    Date: 2012–05
  22. By: Masayoshi Hayashi (Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo)
    Abstract: On the basis of the standard model of local public production, we delineate the factors that account for the "U-shaped" per capita local public expenditures and relate them to construct an efficiency indicator for local populations. We articulate that population-induced changes in the per capita cost are related to the relative magnitude between the (i) technical elasticity of scale, which characterizes technology for the direct outputs produced by a government, and (ii) congestion elasticity, which characterizes consumption technology for the public services consumed by citizens. Those two elasticities allow us to construct an indicator that quantifies the distance of a local population from its minimum efficient scale (MES) for local public expenditures. We then estimate the urban public production structure in Japan and apply the analysis to the Japanese case. With the estimates obtained, we rank the Japanese cities according to the calculated values of the indicator.
    Date: 2012–05
  23. By: Konstantin A. Kholodilin
    Abstract: In this paper, we construct a data set of Internet offer prices for flats in 48 large European cities from 24 countries. The data are collected in January - April 2012 from 33 websites, where the advertisements of flats for sale are placed. Using these data we investigate the determinants of the flat prices. Four factors are found to be relevant for the flats' price level: income per capita, population density, unemployment rate, and Gini index. The results are robust both to excluding variables and to applying two alternative estimation techniques: OLS and quantile regression. Based on our estimation results we are able to identify the cities, where the prices are overvalued, and those, where the prices are undervalued. This is a useful information that allows analyzing and comparing the housing markets in large European cities.
    Keywords: Internet ads, flats' prices, large European cities, fundamental prices
    JEL: C21 R31
    Date: 2012
  24. By: Renata Bottazzi (University of Bologna and Institute for Fiscal Studies); Thomas Crossley (Koc University, University of Cambridge and Institute for Fiscal Studies); Matthew Wakefield (Royal Holloway, University of London and Institute for Fiscal Studies)
    Abstract: We investigate whether initial differences in speed of entry into homeownership lead to longlasting differences in ownership between generations. Our data span nearly forty years and multiple cycles of England’s very volatile house prices. We document that ownership rates at thirty have differed substantially, with a significant negative association with prices. To assess the persistence of these differences we use synthetic cohort methods. Measurement error problems – attenuation and other biases - complicate the analysis. Two methods of dealing with this both indicate that cohorts with low ownership rates at thirty close about 80% of the ownership gap by forty.
    Keywords: homeownership, synthetic cohort data, measurement error.
    JEL: R21 R31
    Date: 2012–06
  25. By: Gaston Heimeriks; Ron Boschma
    Abstract: This study explores the worldwide spatial evolution of scientific knowledge production in biotechnology in the period 1986-2008. We employ new methodology that identifies new key topics in biotech on the basis of frequent use of title worlds in major biotech journals as an indication of new cognitive developments within this scientific field. Our analyses show that biotech is subject to a path- and place-dependent process of knowledge production. We observed a high degree of re-occurrences of similar key topics in biotech in consecutive years. Furthermore, slow growth cities in biotech are characterized by topics that are less technologically related to other topics, while high growth cities in biotech contribute to topics that are more related to the entire set of existing topics. Slow growth and stable growth cities in biotech introduced more new topics, while fast growth cities in biotech introduced more promising topics. Slow growth cities also showed low levels of research collaboration, as compared to stable and high growth cities.
    Keywords: title words, branching, geography of biotechnology, scientific knowledge production, path dependence, place dependence
    JEL: O33 R11 L65 D83
    Date: 2012–06
  26. By: Maurizio Pisati (University of Milano–Bicocca)
    Abstract: In this talk, I will present the basic principles of exploratory spatial data analysis and their application using Stata. After a brief discussion of the specific features of spatial data, I will show some freely-available user-written Stata commands (spmap, spgrid, spkde, spatwmat, spatgsa, spatcorr, spatlsa) that help to carry out some exploratory analyses of real-world spatial data.
    Date: 2012–06–04
  27. By: Agarwal, Sumit (National University of Singapore and Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago); Ben-David, Itzhak (OH State University); Amromin, Gene (Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago); Chomsisengphet, Souphala (US Office of the Comptroller of the Currency); Evanoff, Douglas D. (Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago)
    Abstract: It is typically argued that predatory lending generated significant social costs and played a central role in creating the subprime crisis. However, there are few estimates of its true effect. We estimate the effect of predatory lending on the residential mortgage default rate using an anti-predatory program implemented in Chicago in 2006. Under the legislation, risky borrowers and risky mortgages triggered mandatory counseling. Following the legislation, market activity decreased by about 35%, where risky borrowers, risky products, and lenders who typically made riskier loans were most affected. Despite the sharp decline in market activity, 18- and 36-month default rates in the treated group exhibited a relative improvement of 12% and 7%, respectively. We estimate that predatory loans have a 6-7% higher default rate than nonpredatory loans. Our results suggest that predatory lending may have not been instrumental in precipitating the financial crisis as often believed.
    Date: 2012–05
  28. By: Stéphane Turolla
    Abstract: This paper challenges the conventional wisdom on the competitive grocery retail sector in France. To that end, I develop a structural model of spatial competition that accounts for (i) market geography on consumers' preferences, and (ii) differences in their shopping list. The demand estimates are used to recover stores' price-cost margin under alternative pricing strategies. I select the best pricing model by applying non-nested tests and show that retailers noticeably distort their offer in highly concentrated markets. Finally, I perform counterfactual experiments to quantify the expected gain of an additional store on consumer welfare and retail prices.
    Keywords: spatial competition, structural model, discrete choice model, differentiated products, supermarket industry
    JEL: C35 L13 L81
    Date: 2012
  29. By: P. Amaral; L. Anselin
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate the finite sample properties of Moran’s I test statistic for spatial autocorrelation in limited dependent variable models suggested by Kelejian and Prucha (2001). We analyze the socio- economic determinants of the availability of dialysis equipment in 5,507 Brazilian municipalities in 2009 by means of a probit and tobit specifica- tion. We assess the extent to which evidence of spatial autocorrelation can be remedied by the inclusion of spatial fixed effects. We find spa- tial autocorrelation in both model specifications. For the probit model, a spatial fixed effects approach removes evidence of spatial autocorrelation. However, this is not the case for the tobit specification. We further fill a void in the theoretical literature by investigating the finite sample prop- erties of these test statistics in a series of Monte Carlo simulations, using data sets ranging from 49 to 15,625 observations. We find that the tests are unbiased and have considerable power for even medium-sized sample sizes. Under the null hypothesis of no spatial autocorrelation, their em- pirical distribution cannot be distinguished from the asymptotic normal distribution, empirically confirming the theoretical results of Kelejian and Prucha (2001), although the sample size required to achieve this result is larger in the tobit case than in the probit case.
    Date: 2011
  30. By: Troy Martin; Bettina Aten; Eric Figueroa (Bureau of Economic Analysis)
    Abstract: In May of 2011, BEA published prototype estimates of 5-year regional price parities for states and metropolitan areas for 16 expenditure classes, including rents, for the 2005-2009 period. In previous research (see: Aten & Reinsdorf [2010], Aten & Heston [2009]), differences in interarea price comparisons were evaluated using various methods of constructing the multilateral indexes. In this paper we explore some of these results with respect to different treatments of shelter costs (rents), using data from both the Consumer Price Index and the American Community Survey.
    Date: 2011–10
  31. By: Wolański, Michał
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to present the different approaches to demonopolisation used in Polish and European urban public transport, compare the efficiency of these models which have proven popular in Poland as well as to estimate the total losses incurred due to the high monopolisation of Polish public transport. The methodology of the research is based on econometric modelling (Stochastic Frontier Analysis) and on a survey conducted by the author among Public Transport Authorities. The author proves that the modern London model (competition for the market) is more efficient in Polish conditions than the classic German one (communal monopoly). The very popular in Poland combination of the two above formulas – the co-existence of a Public Transport Authority with a monopolistic publicly owned operator – is surprisingly the least efficient. Total losses due to the existence of monopolies in Polish urban bus transport are estimated for the year 2007 at the level of 10-14% of its total budget (ca. 117-149 m EURO/year). In some cities, the losses can be as high as 20-25% of the total remuneration to the public bus operator. In others, public monopolists can be as efficient as private operators in the competitive model.
    Keywords: public transport; demonopolisation; Stochastic Frontier Analysis
    JEL: K21
    Date: 2011
  32. By: Madsen, Erik Strøjer (Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business)
    Abstract: Education as a road to growth has been on the political agenda in recent years and promoted not least by the institutions of higher education. At the same time the universities have been squeezed for resources for a long period and the average class size has increased as a result. However, the production technology for higher education is not well known and this study highlights the relation between class size and student achievement using a large dataset of 80.000 gradings from the Aarhus School of Business. The estimations show a large negative effect of larger classes on the grade level of students. The type of exam also has a large and significant effect on student achievements and oral exam, take-home exam and group exam reward the student with a significantly higher grade compared with an on-site written exam
    Keywords: No; keywords
    JEL: A23 C23 I23
    Date: 2011–01–24
  33. By: Neubecker, Nina; Smolka, Marcel; Steinbacher, Anne
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the role of ethnic communities in shaping the recent immigration boom to Spain. We find that ethnic communities exerted a strong positive effect on the scale and a strong negative effect on the skill structure of this immigration. Unlike previous studies, we explicitly acknowledge similarities among final migration destinations and thus partly relax the independence of irrelevant alternatives assumption. We strengthen our causal interpretation by controlling for observed and unobserved heterogeneity in bilateral migration costs, and by adopting an instrumental variables approach. Our results suggest that previous estimates of the scale effect are upward-biased by approximately 50%. --
    Keywords: International migration,Ethnic networks,Family and friends effect,Skill structure of migration,Spain
    JEL: F22
    Date: 2012
  34. By: De Vijlder, Nicolas
    Abstract: The rise of factor markets during the transition from the middle ages into the early modern was of crucial importance for long term economic growth. The transmission of property through the market however remains understudied, especially in the Southern Low Countries. In this paper we construct a formal model to analyse the land market both at the regional and interregional level. We found that regional variations in land prices within Brabant and Flanders can for a large part be explained by differences in future net revenues. A similar economic rationality determined land prices at the local level. Further more, evidence showed that while short-term inter-temporal price fluctuations could occur, overall price levels in the fifteenth century were stable. During the sixteenth century however, deflated land prices rose markedly. While the former fluctuations were due to short-term shock, the persistent price rise in the latter period was caused by structural changes. Overall, our research yields two conclusions. First, economic rationality seemed to drive price formation on both the regional and interregional level. Second, the increased availability of credit from the late fifteenth century onwards consistently drove real prices upwards. Further research is necessary to find out whether credit was a push of pull factor in this respect.
    Keywords: land markets; Flanders; Brabant; macroeconomic analysis; early modern history; property distribution; agriculture
    JEL: N0 N13 N93
    Date: 2012–06–06
  35. By: Emilie Caldeira; Martial Foucault; Grégoire Rota-Graziosi
    Abstract: We study the effect of decentralization on the access to some poverty-related public services in Benin. Compiling panel data from local governments' accounts and from surveys on 18,000 Beninese households performed in 2006 and 2007, our study suggests that decentralization has a positive overall effect on access to basic services. However, this effect appears to be nonmonotone following an inverted U-shaped curve. It varies according to local jurisdictions' wealth and to the nature of basic services. Decentralization in Benin contributes positively to the reduction of poverty by improving the average access to poverty-related services. However, the devil is in the details, as decentralization seems to increase inequality among local governments in terms of access. Another result relying on the success of decentralization in Benin is the prioritization of basic services, which differs among local governments according to their wealth. While the poorest jurisdictions neglect primary education, focusing more on access to drinking water, the richest ones get less attention to sewage services, since these are already provided at a sufficiently high level.
    JEL: D73 H41 H42 H52 H77 I38 O17
    Date: 2012–06
  36. By: Fernando Borraz; Alberto Cavallo; Roberto Rigobon; Leandro Zipitría
    Abstract: The “border effect” literature finds that political borders have a very large impact on relative prices, implicitly adding several thousands of miles to trade. In this paper we show that the standard empirical specification suffers from selection bias, and propose a new methodology based on quantile regressions. Using a novel data set from Uruguay, we apply our procedure to measure the segmentation introduced by city borders. City borders should matter little for trade. We find that when the standard methodology is used, two supermarkets separated by 10 kilometers across two different cities have the same price dispersion as two supermarkets separated by 30 kilometers within the same city; so the city border triples the distance. When our methodology is used, the city border effect becomes insignificant. We further test our methodology using online prices for the largest supermarket chain in the country, and show that the “online border” is equivalent to the average distance from the online warehouse to each of the offline stores.
    JEL: F40 F41
    Date: 2012–06
  37. By: Luc Anselin (GeoDa Center for Geospatial Analysis and Computation; Arizona State University)
    Abstract: This essay assesses the evolution of the way in which spatial data analytical methods have been incorporated into software tools over the past two decades. It is part retrospective and prospective, going beyond a historical review to outline some ideas about important factors that drove the software development, such as methodological advances, the open source movement and the advent of the internet and cyberinfrastructure. The review highlights activities carried out by the author and his collaborators and uses SpaceStat, GeoDa, PySAL and recent spatial analytical web services developed at the ASU GeoDa Center as illustrative examples. It outlines a vision for a spatial econometrics workbench as an example of the incorporation of spatial analytical functionality in a cyberGIS.
    Date: 2011
  38. By: Stone, Kenneth E.; Artz, Georgeanne M.
    Abstract: Stone conducted the first study of Wal-Mart stores economic impact in Iowa in 1988.  Since then, research on Wal-Mart’s impacts has exploded. Recent studies employ sophisticated statistical techniques to more accurately measure the size and direction of effects. Many reach conclusions similar to Stone’s original work.  This paper updates the original Stone study with additional years of data.  It draws on recent methodological advances to help account for Wal-Mart’s strategic location decisions on estimated retail sales impacts in Iowa.  Consistent with previous studies, we find that Wal-Mart’s entry into smaller trade centers in Iowa had a big initial impact on host town retail sales, with some categories experiencing large significant increases while others saw declines in sales per capita.  Wal-Mart’s presence helped to stabilize or even expand the local retail sector of most rural Iowa host communities.  To conclude, policy implications for local economic development officials are discussed.
    Keywords: Wal-Mart; retail trade; Iowa
    JEL: L81 R
    Date: 2012–05–31
  39. By: Zoë O. Ambargis; Thomas McComb; Carol A. Robbins (Bureau of Economic Analysis)
    Abstract: Economic impact analyses for universities often produce impacts so large that they are viewed with suspicion. Using data collected from universities on actual expenditures as well as the local share of these expenditures to calibrate and regionalize custom economic impact multipliers will produce better results. We compare these economic impacts to those obtained using an “off-the-shelf” multiplier for universities from BEA’s Regional Input-Output Modeling System (RIMS II). We find that results are sensitive to initial assumptions about the study region and the scope of university economic activity. Finally, we use these results and our knowledge of the model to provide recommendations to improve the usefulness and reliability of multiplier-based estimates of the economic impact of universities.
    Date: 2011–06
  40. By: Pertold, Filip (Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business)
    Abstract: I estimate the effect of opposite-gender peer drinking on individual risky sexual behavior among Czech youth. The identification strategy relies on two main controls for individual and groupspecific unobservables. First, younger schoolmates’ sexual behavior is a control for school-specific attitudes toward sexual behavior. Second, pre-determined individual pre-secondary-school alcohol consumption is used to control for self-selection into schools of individuals with specific attitudes toward alcohol. As opposed to Waddell (2010), I find that female drinking affects the male propensity to have unprotected sex, while male drinking does not have such an effect on female behavior. This finding corresponds to the fact that females have usually older sexual partners than males
    Keywords: Peer effects; Sexual behavior; Drinking
    JEL: I12 J13
    Date: 2011–01–01
  41. By: Black, Sandra (University of Texas, Austin); Devereux, Paul J. (University College Dublin); Løken, Katrine V. (University of Bergen); Salvanes, Kjell G. (Dept. of Economics, Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration)
    Abstract: Given the wide use of childcare subsidies across countries, it is surprising how little we know about the effect of these subsidies on children’s longer run outcomes. Using a sharp discontinuity in the price of childcare in Norway, we are able to isolate the effects of childcare subsidies on both parental and student outcomes. We find very small and statistically insignificant effects of childcare subsidies on childcare utilization and parental labor force participation. Despite this, we find significant positive effect of the subsidies on children’s academic performance in junior high school, suggesting the positive shock to disposable income provided by the subsidies may be helping to improve children’s scholastic aptitude.
    Keywords: Childcare; subsidies; academic performance
    JEL: H52 J13
    Date: 2012–05–16
  42. By: Kayam, Saime S.; Hisarcıklılar, Mehtap; Kayalıca, Özgür
    Abstract: The investments of Turkish entrepreneurs to other countries increased in the 1990s. This paper explores Turkish FDI abroad focusing on the factors influencing the FDI decision and location choice, using micro data collected from investor firms. A micro level data set for the Turkish FDI abroad is constructed using the information gathered through questionnaires conducted at some selected firms, which have engaged in FDI abroad. The data is explored using statistical and econometric techniques by grouping the countries based on their geographical location. Among the factors that determine the location choice of investors access to consumers and suppliers, market penetration; the presence of Turkish firms and Turkish population, and similarity to Turkey; trade opportunities and preferential trade agreements; together with labour costs and availability of skilled workers affect the location choice of Turkish transnationals. Key words: outward foreign direct investment, location choice, Turkey
    Keywords: outward foreign direct investment; location choice; Turkey
    JEL: F23 C25
    Date: 2011
  43. By: Keane, Claire; Walsh, John R.; Callan, Tim; Savage, Michael
    Abstract: The introduction of a property tax is now firmly on the policy agenda. Designing such a tax involves a series of choices which affect how the burden of the tax is distributed across households. In this paper we use SWITCH, the ESRI tax-benefit model, to explore the implications of alternative approaches designed to link a property tax with ability to pay. We also draw on international experience with property taxes to provide insights into choices regarding the structure and operation of a new tax. A key finding is that an income exemption limit below which property tax is not payable (with marginal relief for those with incomes just above the limit) could provide a powerful tool for shaping the income distribution consequences of the tax. Without such an approach, the highest burden would be on those with lowest incomes. However, an income exemption limit for a single person of ?12,000 per year, just above the State Contributory Pension rate, would greatly reduce the impact on low income groups. A higher income exemption limit of ?15,000, with a tax rate of ?2.50 per ?1,000 of house value would mean that the property tax would have little impact on those on the lowest incomes, and have its greatest impact ? a reduction in disposable income of just under 1 per cent ? on those with the highest incomes.
    Keywords: Ireland/property tax/taxes/Policy/income distribution
    Date: 2012–04

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