nep-ure New Economics Papers
on Urban and Real Estate Economics
Issue of 2013‒09‒28
35 papers chosen by
Steve Ross
University of Connecticut

  1. Agglomeration Economies in Classical Music By Karol J. Borowiecki
  2. “Do labour mobility and technological collaborations foster geographical knowledge diffusion? The case of European regions” By Ernest Miguélez; Rosina Moreno
  3. Low-income-rental-housing programs in the Fourth District By Matthew Klesta; Frank Manzo; Francisca G-C Richter; Mark S Sniderman
  4. Measuring the Impacts of Teachers II: Teacher Value-Added and Student Outcomes in Adulthood By Raj Chetty; John N. Friedman; Jonah E. Rockoff
  5. The Location of the UK Cotton Textiles Industry in 1838: a Quantitative Analysis By Crafts, Nicholas; Wolf, Nikolaus
  6. Employment, transport infrastructure and rural depopulation: a new spatial equilibrium model By McArthur, David Philip; Thorsen, Inge; Ubøe, Jan
  7. How to make the metropolitan area work? Neither big government, nor laissez-faire By Gaigné, Carl; Riou, Stéphane; Thisse, Jacques-François
  8. Does Growing Up in a High Crime Neighborhood Affect Youth Criminal Behavior? By Anna Piil Damm; Christian Dustmann
  9. Role of Hub Firms in Geographical Transaction Network By SAITO Yukiko
  10. A spatial and sectoral analysis of firm demography in Italy By Giuseppe Espa; Danila Filipponi; Diego Giuliani; Davide Piacentino
  11. The Long-Term Direct and External Effects of Jewish Expulsions in Nazi Germany By Mevlude Akbulut Yuksel; Mutlu Yuksel
  12. Leverage and the Foreclosure Crisis By Dean Corbae; Erwan Quintin
  13. Do Firms Benefit from Active Labour Market Policies? By Michael Lechner; Patrycja Scioch; Conny Wunsch
  14. Employer education, agglomeration and workplace training: poaching vs knowledge spillovers By Giuseppe Croce; Edoardo Di Porto; Emanuela Ghignoni; Andrea Ricci
  15. The myopic choice between fixed and adjustable rate mortgages in Flanders By Sven DAMEN; Erik BUYST
  16. Universities as local knowledge hubs under different technology regimes – New evidence from academic patenting By Friedrich Dornbusch; Thomas Brenner
  17. Trade, economic geography and the choice of product quality By PICARD, Pierre M.
  18. Wage Inequality of Chinese Rural-Urban Migrants Between 2002 and 2007 By Zhong Zhao; Zhaopeng Qu
  19. Spatial issues on a hedonic estimation of rents in Brussels By PHOLO BALA, Alain; PEETERS, Dominique; THOMAS, Isabelle
  20. Cycling to School: Increasing Secondary School Enrollment for Girls in India By Muralidharan, Karthik; Prakash, Nishith
  21. Municipality amalgamation in Japan: A survival analysis of the timings of the amalgamation process By Katsuyoshi Nakazawa; Tomohisa Miyashita
  22. The Heterogeneous Effects of Workforce Diversity on Productivity, Wages and Profits By Garnero, Andrea; Kampelmann, Stephan; Rycx, François
  23. Does voter turnout affect the votes for the incumbent government? By Rodrigo Martins; Francisco José Veiga
  24. Compulsory Education and the Benefits of Schooling By Melvin Stephens, Jr.; Dou-Yan Yang
  25. Primary Seat-Belt Laws and Driver Behavior: Evidence from Accident Data By Bae, Yong-Kyun
  26. Effects of Early Childhood Intervention on Child Development and Early Skill Formation. Evidence from a Randomized Controlled Trial By Sandner, Malte
  27. Integration of Locational Decisions with the Household Activity Pattern Problem and Its Applications in Transportation Sustainability By Kang, Jee Eun
  28. Neighbours and Extension Agents in Ethiopia: Who matters more for technology diffusion? By Krishnan, Pramila; Patnam, Manasa
  29. Heterogeneous Firms and Imperfect Substitution: The Productivity Effect of Migrants By Anette Haas; Michael Lucht
  30. The Informal Labour Market in India: Transitory or Permanent Employment for Migrants? By Junankar, Pramod N. (Raja); Shonchoy, Abu
  31. The rise of the East and the Far East: German labor markets and trade integration By Wolfgang Dauth; Sebastian Findeisen; Jens Suedekum
  32. France: Financial Sector Assessment Program—Technical Note on Housing Prices and Financial Stability By International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
  33. Too Small to Fail? Subnational Spending Pressures in Europe By Luc Eyraud; Marialuz Moreno Badia
  34. Better Workers Move to Better Firms: A Simple Test to Identify Sorting By Francesco Devicienti; Cristian Bartolucci
  35. Heterogeneity in Long Term Health Outcomes of Migrants within Italy By Vincenzo Atella; Partha Deb

  1. By: Karol J. Borowiecki (Department of Business and Economics, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark)
    Abstract: This study investigates agglomeration effects for classical music production in a wide range of cities for a global sample of composers born between 1750 and 1899. Theory suggests a trade-off between agglomeration economies (peer effects) and diseconomies (peer crowding). I test this hypothesis using historical data on composers and employ a unique instrumental variable - a measure of birth centrality, calculated as the average distance between a composer´s birthplace and the birthplace of his peers. I find a strong causal impact of peer group size on the number of important compositions written in a given year. Consistent with theory, the productivity gain eventually decreases and is characterized by an inverted U-shaped relationship. These results are robust to a large series of tests, including checks for quality of peers, city characteristics, various measures of composers´ productivity, and across different estimations in which also time-varying birth centrality measures are used as instrumental variables.
    Keywords: agglomeration economies, density effects, peer effects, productivity, urban history, cities, composer
    JEL: D24 J24 N90 R12 Z11
    Date: 2013–09
  2. By: Ernest Miguélez (Economics and Statistics Division, WIPO and AQR-IREA); Rosina Moreno (Faculty of Economics, University of Barcelona)
    Abstract: The goal of this paper is twofold: first, we aim to assess the role played by inventors’ cross-regional mobility and collaborations in fostering knowledge diffusion across regions and subsequent innovation. Second, we intend to evaluate the feasibility of using mobility and co-patenting information to build cross-regional interaction matrices to be used within the spatial econometrics toolbox. To do so, we depart from a knowledge production function where regional innovation intensity is a function not only of the own regional innovation inputs but also external accessible knowledge stocks gained through interregional interactions. Differently from much of the previous literature, cross-section gravity models of mobility and co-patents are estimated to use the fitted values to build our ‘spatial’ weights matrices, which characterize the intensity of knowledge interactions across a panel of 269 regions covering most European countries over 6 years.
    Keywords: inventors’ spatial mobility, co-patenting, gravity models, weights matrix, knowledge production function. JEL classification: C8, J61, O31, O33, R0.
    Date: 2013–07
  3. By: Matthew Klesta; Frank Manzo; Francisca G-C Richter; Mark S Sniderman
    Abstract: In the aftermath of the Great Recession, many policy analysts are rethinking national housing policies, including affordable housing programs. We review the literature to compare the largest tenant-based (housing choice voucher or HCV) and place-based (low-income-housing tax credit or LIHTC) programs with respect to cost efficiency and access to better quality neighborhoods. We also provide an overview of low-income-rental-housing policy trends and perform a rough comparison of neighborhood quality across programs and counties, focusing on four main urban counties in the Fourth Federal Reserve District (Cuyahoga, Hamilton, and Franklin in Ohio, and Allegheny in Pennsylvania). We find that in spite of relatively stable real rents, affordability in the Ohio counties declined between 2005 and 2009 due to a drop in real incomes. We find that in Allegheny County during 2006-2009, neighborhood quality was comparable for rental units available through each of the two housing programs. We also find evidence that neighborhoods with LIHTC investments placed in service by 2000 in Allegheny County improved their quality by 2006-2009 relative to comparable neighborhoods, but we do not find similar evidence for the Ohio counties. Lacking tenant-level data on LIHTC renters, it is hard to explain these regional differences. Finally, we note that richer data reporting on various aspects of HCV and LIHTC would improve the ability of program administrators and policymakers to design, coordinate, and evaluate programs based on efficiency and effectiveness.
    Date: 2013
  4. By: Raj Chetty; John N. Friedman; Jonah E. Rockoff
    Abstract: Are teachers' impacts on students' test scores ("value-added") a good measure of their quality? This question has sparked debate partly because of a lack of evidence on whether high value-added (VA) teachers who raise students' test scores improve students' long-term outcomes. Using school district and tax records for more than one million children, we find that students assigned to high-VA teachers in primary school are more likely to attend college, earn higher salaries, live in higher SES neighborhoods, and have higher savings rates. They are also less likely to have children as teenagers. Teachers have substantial impacts in all grades from 4 to 8. On average, a one standard deviation improvement in teacher VA in a single grade raises earnings by 1.3% at age 28. Replacing a teacher whose VA is in the bottom 5% with an average teacher would increase the present value of students' lifetime income by approximately $250,000 per classroom.
    JEL: H0
    Date: 2013–09
  5. By: Crafts, Nicholas; Wolf, Nikolaus
    Abstract: We examine the geography of UK cotton textiles in 1838 to test claims about why the industry came to be so heavily concentrated in Lancashire. Our analysis considers both first and second nature geography including the availability of water power, humidity, coal prices, market access and sunk costs. We show that some of these characteristics have substantial explanatory power. Moreover, we exploit the change from water to steam power to show that the persistent effect of first nature characteristics on industry location can be explained by a combination of sunk costs and agglomeration effects.
    Keywords: agglomeration; cotton textiles; geography; industry location
    JEL: N63 N93 R12
    Date: 2013–09
  6. By: McArthur, David Philip (Dept. of Health Management and Health Economics, University of Oslo); Thorsen, Inge (Dept. of Economics, Stord/Haugesund University College); Ubøe, Jan (Dept. of Business and Management Science, Norwegian School of Economics)
    Abstract: In this paper we propose a new spatial equilibrium model, and use it to discuss issues related to rural depopulation. The discussion focuses on how investments in transport infrastructure and the spatial distribution of basic sector jobs can promote a relatively balanced growth of peripheral and central areas of a region. Through interdependencies in individual migration decisions and an economic base multiplier mechanism, negative exogenous shocks may take a peripheral zone beyond a bifurcation point, into an equilibrium of dramatically lower population and employment. We study how the location of bifurcation points depend on spatial interaction behavioural parameters and variables subject to regional policy. We also discuss the issue of the timing of interventions intended to prevent a process of rural depopulation.
    Keywords: Employment; transport infrastructure; rural depopulation; spatial equilibrium model
    JEL: R00 R10
    Date: 2013–09–16
  7. By: Gaigné, Carl; Riou, Stéphane; Thisse, Jacques-François
    Abstract: We study how political boundaries and fiscal competition interact with the labor and land markets to determine the economic structure and performance of metropolitan areas. Contrary to general belief, institutional fragmentation need not be welfare-decreasing, and commuting from the suburbs to the central city is not wasteful. Thus, the institutional and economic limits of the central city do not coincide at the social optimum. Under tax competition, the central business district is too small. The dispersion of jobs is increased when suburbanite workers consume the public services supplied by the central city. This indicates the need for some metropolitan governance.
    Keywords: administrative boundary; economic boundary; fiscal competition; local labor markets; metropolitan area; suburbanization
    JEL: H41 H71 R12
    Date: 2013–06
  8. By: Anna Piil Damm (Department of Economics and Business, Aarhus University); Christian Dustmann (University College London)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of early exposure to neighborhood crime on subsequent criminal behavior of youth exploiting a unique natural experiment between 1986 and 1998 when refugee immigrants to Denmark were assigned to neighborhoods quasi-randomly. We find strong evidence that the share of young people convicted for crimes, in particular violent crimes, in the neighborhood increases convictions of male assignees later in life. No such effects are found for other measures of neighborhood crime including the rate of committed crimes. Our findings suggest social interaction as a key channel through which neighborhood crime is linked to individual criminal behavior.
    Keywords: Neighborhood effects, criminal convictions, social interactions, random allocation
    JEL: J0 H43
    Date: 2013–09–09
  9. By: SAITO Yukiko
    Abstract: In this study, we investigate the role of geographical proximity in an inter-firm transaction network and the role of hub firms on geographical spread of regional impact. By using inter-firm micro transaction data of over 800 thousands firms, we found that indirect transaction is geographically dispersed mainly due to a few hub firms, although firm's direct transactions mostly occur within geographically narrow areas. More precisely, median distance between indirect transaction partners (partners' partners) is 255km, which is much larger than that between direct transaction partners (29km). In a counterfactual transaction network without hub firms, whose transaction relations are no less than 100, median distance between indirect transaction partners is reduced to 70km, thereby suggesting the important role of hub firms in a geographical transaction network. We confirm this suggestion through an analysis of regional impact of the Great East Japan Earthquake.
    Date: 2013–09
  10. By: Giuseppe Espa; Danila Filipponi; Diego Giuliani; Davide Piacentino
    Abstract: This paper looks at spatial and sectoral effects on firm entry and exit in Italian NUTS-3 regions, over the period 2004-2009. We use a new version of spatial shift-share decomposition which looks more effectively at the neighbourhood influence, beyond traditionally looking at national, industrial mix and regional-shift components. We separately analyse the sub-periods 2004-2007 and 2007-2009, in order to take into account the 2007 crisis. Results seem to be substantially divergent between the Southern regions, i.e. the poorest areas, and the rest of Italy. The firm demography seems to manifest higher instability over time, i.e. more entries but also more exits, in the Southern regions and this is associated with the presence of industrial mix disadvantage. On other hand, the firm demography is more stable, i.e. less entries but also less exits, in the rest of Italy and this reflects an industrial mix advantage. Such results seems to be widespread within the two macro-areas as the analysis of neighbourhood influence points out. externalities.
    Keywords: firm demography, crisis, spatial shift-share, Italian regions
    JEL: C21 L26 R12
    Date: 2013
  11. By: Mevlude Akbulut Yuksel (Dalhousie University, Halifax); Mutlu Yuksel (Dalhousie University, Halifax)
    Abstract: This paper examines the long-term direct and spillover effects of large-scale human capital loss caused by the persecution of Jewish professionals in Nazi Germany. Using region-by-cohort variation in the Jewish population as a quasi-experiment, we find that on average German children who were of school age during the persecutions have fewer years of schooling in adulthood, and are less likely to finish high school or go to college. These results are robust after controlling for regional unemployment and income, wartime destruction, Nazi and Communist Party support, the compulsory schooling reform, migration, urbanization and mortality.
    Keywords: human capital formation, children, Jewish history
    JEL: I21 I28 J24 N34
    Date: 2013–09
  12. By: Dean Corbae; Erwan Quintin
    Abstract: How much of the recent rise in foreclosures can be explained by the large number of high-leverage mortgage contracts originated during the housing boom? We present a model where heterogeneous households select from a set of mortgage contracts and choose whether to default on their payments given realizations of income and housing price shocks. The set of mortgage contracts consists of loans with high downpayments and loans with low downpayments. We run an experiment where the use of low downpayment loans is initially limited by payment-to-income requirements but then becomes unrestricted for 8 years. The relaxation of approval standards causes homeownership rates, high-leverage originations and the frequency of high interest rate loans to rise much like they did in the US between 1998-2006. When home values fall by the magnitude observed in the US from 2007-08, default rates increase by over 180% as they do in the data. Two distinct counterfactual experiments where approval standards remain the same throughout suggest that the increased availability of high-leverage loans prior to the crisis can explain between 40% to 65% of the initial rise in foreclosure rates. Furthermore, we run policy experiments which suggest that recourse could have had significant dampening effects during the crisis.
    JEL: E44 G21 R3
    Date: 2013–08
  13. By: Michael Lechner; Patrycja Scioch; Conny Wunsch (University of Basel)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the link between variation in the supply of workers who participate in spe­cific types of active labour market policies (ALMPs) and firm performance using a new exception­ally informative German employer-employee data base. For identification we ex­ploit that German local employment agencies (LEAs) have a high degree of autonomy in determining their own mix of ALMPs and that firms' hiring regions overlap only imperfectly with the areas of responsibility of the LEAs. Our results indicate that in general firms do not benefit from ALMPs and in some cases may even be harmed by certain programs, in particular by sub­sidized employment and longer training programs. These findings complement the negative assessment of the cost-effectiveness of ALMPs from the empirical literature on the effects for participants.
    Keywords: Subsidized employment programs, training programs, regional variation, program evaluation.
    JEL: J68
    Date: 2013
  14. By: Giuseppe Croce; Edoardo Di Porto; Emanuela Ghignoni; Andrea Ricci
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the role of the employer in workplace training, a novelty with respect to the literature on this topic. Taking advantage of a unique dataset on Italy, we study how individual employer profile and the agglomeration of employers influence firms’ propensity to invest in training. Our findings show that highly educated employers have a greater propensity to invest in workplace training. Moreover, we are able to capture the effect of employers’ human capital agglomeration on the training decision. We assert that such agglomeration leads to two different alternative scenarios: 1) a poaching effect may prevail, therefore competition among employers induces less propensity to train workers; 2) a positive knowledge spillover effect may prevail leading to a greater propensity to engage in training. We test these two options discovering that in the Italian case, where small businesses are prominent, the first effect is stronger. Several econometrics issues are considered in our empirical strategy: the skewed and bounded nature of the training decision indicator, the endogeneity issues derived from the agglomeration effect as well as the cross section dependence problems affecting standard errors.
    Keywords: workplace training; poaching; knowledge spillovers; entrepreneurship cluster, employer’s education, social capital, proximity.
    JEL: J24 O15 O18 R23
    Date: 2013–09
  15. By: Sven DAMEN; Erik BUYST
    Abstract: Many households have only one major asset, a house, which is usually financed through a mortgage contract. One of the most important financial decisions a household has to make is therefore the choice of mortgage type. These can be broadly described as falling into one of two categories: the fixed rate mortgage (FRM) and the adjustable rate mortgage (ARM). We use data from Flanders (Belgium) to study the choice between FRMs and ARMs. Belgium is of special interest as the structure of the Belgian mortgage market varied significantly during the last decade. From 2003 to 2012, the Belgian share of mortgages with an initial rate fixation period up to one year fell from 62% in 2004 to 8% in 2006, recovered to 58% in 2010, and fell again to 5% in 2012. This is a remarkably large variation in comparison to other countries. The results indicate that the FRM-ARM interest rate spread explains almost all the variation of the ARM share from 2003:01 to 2012:12. However, households do not distinguish between changes in the premium that lenders demand for holding the riskier long-term FRM or expected changes in the ARM rate. Mortgage choices can thus be described as short-sighted decisions, based on initial mortgage payments. We furthermore find evidence that high and low income households in Flanders choose an ARM for different reasons. Whereas the high income segment chooses an ARM if they can afford changes in interest payments, the low income households prefer an ARM if they are financially constrained.
    Date: 2013–09
  16. By: Friedrich Dornbusch (Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, Competence Center Policy and Regions); Thomas Brenner (Economic Geography and Location Research, Philipps-Universität Marburg)
    Abstract: It is often claimed that universities act as local knowledge factories. Although this function is largely analyzed in previous research, there still is a knowledge gap regarding the role of a technological match between the profiles of partners in university-industry interactions. In addition, the effects of different knowledge dynamics in technological regimes remain under-researched. In this paper, we thus draw special attention to the question how geographical distance and the specific role of a technological fit between the knowledge provided by the university and the technological needs of the local industry affects interactions between universities and firms. Thereby, we differentiate between six technological regimes constituted by different knowledge dynamics. Our analyses are based on a unique dataset containing all German universities’ academic patenting and publication activities. As these are further enriched by secondary data, they enable us to show that the technological fit between a university and its surrounding region (in terms of local industry needs) indeed has a significant influence on a university’s innovation-related research interactions, especially with small firms. We further show that this effect additionally depends on the underlying knowledge base in heterogeneous technological regimes.
    Keywords: university-industry interaction, technological fit, knowledge base, academic patenting, technology regime, local knowledge hub
    JEL: O31 R12 L14
    Date: 2013–10–09
  17. By: PICARD, Pierre M. (CREA, University of Luxembourg; Université catholique de Louvain, CORE, Belgium)
    Abstract: The present paper studies the effect of the choice of product quality on trade and location of firms. We discuss a model where consumers have preferences for the quality of a set of differentiated varieties. Firms do not only develop and sell manufacturing varieties in a monopolistic competitive market but also determine the quality level of their varieties by investing in research and development. We explore the price and quality equilibrium properties when firms are immobile. We then consider a footloose capital model where capital is allocated to the manufacturing firms in the region offering the highest return. We show that the larger region produces varieties of higher quality and that the quality gap increases with larger asymmetries in region sizes and with larger trade costs. Finally, the home market effect is mitigated when firms choose their product quality.
    Keywords: monopolistic competition, endogenous quality, economic geography
    Date: 2013–07–23
  18. By: Zhong Zhao; Zhaopeng Qu
    Abstract: The paper studies the levels and changes in wage inequality among Chinese rural-urban migrants from 2002 to 2007. We use the Chinese Household Income Project dataset and the Rural to Urban Migration in China dataset to construct a unique dataset that allows us to document changing wage inequality among migrants and among urban natives between 2002 and 2007. We find that wage inequality among migrants decreased significantly between 2002 and 2007, whereas it increased among urban natives during the same period. Our results show that the high-wage migrants experienced slower wage growth than middle- and low-wage migrants, a primary cause of declining inequality among migrants. We used distributional decomposition methods, and find that the overall between-group effect (coefficient effect) dominates in the whole wage distribution of the migrants, which means that the change in returns to the characteristics (education and experience) play a key role, but on the upper tails of the wage distribution, the within group effect (residual price effect) dominates which implies that the unobservable factors or institutional barriers do not favor the migrants at the top tail of the wage distribution.
    Keywords: rural to urban migrants, wage inequality, quantity decomposition, China
    JEL: J30 J45 J61
    Date: 2013
  19. By: PHOLO BALA, Alain (Department of Economics and Econometrics, University of Johannesburg, South Africa); PEETERS, Dominique (Université catholique de Louvain, CORE, Belgium); THOMAS, Isabelle (Université catholique de Louvain, CORE, Belgium)
    Abstract: Using Belgian microdata, we assess the impact, on a hedonic regression, of the distortions arising from the choice of either a specific zoning system or the delineation of the study area. We also evaluate the biases that arise when spatial effects are not accounted for. Given that the dependent variable is interval-coded, controlling for spatial dependence in this context is challenging. We address this problem with two alternative strategies. Firstly, we use the Gibbs Sampling algorithm to estimate spatial econometric models which extends the interval regression model. A major drawback of this approach is that the implied estimation is proned to the endogeneity biases inherent to our hedonic regression model. To circumvent the endogeneity issues triggered by the first estimation strategy, we also use a two-stage estimation procedure with locational fixed effects. In all specifications, results are sensitive to the Modifiable Areal Unit Problem (MAUP) and to the choice of the delineation of the study area. Moreover, they confirm the existence of substantive spatial dependence. Conversely to the previous results with a negative elasticity for the percentage of the area covered by agriculture and a positive elasticity for the potential accessibility to jobs, the second approach implies opposite effects for those two variables. This indicates that dwellings close to agricultural areas and with a lower accessibility to the main employment centers are highly demanded and that endogeneity biases are not negligible.
    Keywords: MAUP, interval regression, spatial dependence, spatial heterogeneity, Brussels
    JEL: C21 C24 C25 C34 Q53 R21
    Date: 2013–07–23
  20. By: Muralidharan, Karthik (University of California, San Diego); Prakash, Nishith (University of Connecticut)
    Abstract: We study the impact of an innovative program in the Indian state of Bihar that aimed to reduce the gender gap in secondary school enrollment by providing girls who continued to secondary school with a bicycle that would improve access to school. Using data from a large representative household survey, we employ a triple difference approach (using boys and the neighboring state of Jharkhand as comparison groups) and find that being in a cohort that was exposed to the Cycle program increased girls' age-appropriate enrollment in secondary school by 30% and also reduced the gender gap in age-appropriate secondary school enrollment by 40%. Parametric and non-parametric decompositions of the triple-difference estimate as a function of distance to the nearest secondary school show that the increases in enrollment mostly took place in villages where the nearest secondary school was further away, suggesting that the mechanism for program impact was the reduction in the time and safety cost of school attendance made possible by the bicycle. We find that the Cycle program was much more cost effective at increasing girls' enrolment than comparable conditional cash transfer programs in South Asia, suggesting that the coordinated provision of bicycles to girls may have generated externalities beyond the cash value of the program, including improved safety from girls cycling to school in groups, and changes in patriarchal social norms that proscribed female mobility outside the village, which inhibited female secondary school participation.
    Keywords: conditional transfers, school access, gender gaps, bicycle, girls' education, female empowerment, India, Bihar, MDG
    JEL: H42 I2 O15
    Date: 2013–08
  21. By: Katsuyoshi Nakazawa (University of Toyo); Tomohisa Miyashita (PHP research institute)
    Abstract: This paper uses survival analysis to examine the time taken to carry out municipality amalgamation in Japan in terms of both forming the amalgamation committee and completing amalgamation. The results show that municipalities that depend on local allocation tax grants as a revenue source, those that have an incentive to become a city that has special administrative discretions, and those that jointly manage local services form a committee and complete amalgamation more quickly. Further, municipalities that have high local public debt tend not to form committees. These findings show that the central government’s “carrot-and-stick” policy has strongly influenced municipality amalgamation.
    JEL: H72 H73 H77 R51
    Date: 2013
  22. By: Garnero, Andrea; Kampelmann, Stephan; Rycx, François
    Abstract: We estimate the impact of workforce diversity on productivity, wages and productivity-wage gaps (i.e. profits) using detailed Belgian linked employer-employee panel data. Findings show that educational (age) diversity is beneficial (harmful) for firm productivity and wages. While gender diversity is found to generate significant gains in high-tech/knowledge intensive sectors, the opposite result is obtained in more traditional industries. Estimates neither vary substantially with firm size nor point to sizeable productivity-wage gaps except for age diversity.
    Keywords: labour diversity; productivity; wages; linked panel data; GMM
    JEL: D24 J24 J31 M12
    Date: 2013–09
  23. By: Rodrigo Martins (Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra); Francisco José Veiga (Universidade do Minho - NIPE)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the effects of voter turnout on the vote shares received by the incumbent government. A system of simultaneous equations is estimated using a panel dataset of 278 Portuguese municipalities, for the period 1979-2005, covering 10 legislative elections. The results indicate that right-wing governments have lower vote shares when turnout is higher, while left-wing ones seem to be unaffected. There is also evidence of the responsibility hypothesis, that turnout is higher in closer elections, and that regional/local economic variables have non-linear effects on turnout.
    Keywords: Vote shares, Turnout, Legislative Elections, Portugal,
    JEL: D72 H7
    Date: 2013
  24. By: Melvin Stephens, Jr.; Dou-Yan Yang
    Abstract: Causal estimates of the benefits of increased schooling using U.S. state schooling laws as instruments typically rely on specifications which assume common trends across states in the factors affecting different birth cohorts. Differential changes across states during this period, such as relative school quality improvements, suggest that this assumption may fail to hold. Across a number of outcomes including wages, unemployment, and divorce, we find that statistically significant causal estimates become insignificant and, in many instances, wrong-signed when allowing year of birth effects to vary across regions.
    JEL: J24
    Date: 2013–08
  25. By: Bae, Yong-Kyun
    Abstract: This paper investigates the offsetting effect theory, using individual-level accident data to analyze how drivers respond to seat-belt laws. I find that drivers drive their vehicles more carefully when more stringent seat-belt laws are in effect. I also find that careful driving is not associated with pedestrian involvement in accidents. Using synthetic panel data, I find that the change in the laws results in an increased number of careful drivers and a decreased number of careless drivers in accidents. The results show that the offsetting effects are weaker than expected or may not exist in accidents.
    Keywords: Offsetting Behavior, Safety Regulation, Seat Belt Laws, Vehicle Accidents
    JEL: D01 L51 L91
    Date: 2013–09–14
  26. By: Sandner, Malte
    Abstract: This paper presents results from a randomized evaluation of a home visiting program for disadvantaged first-time mothers and their families implemented in Germany. 12 months after birth, the intervention increases infants' cognitive development by 0.18 SD. However, the effect fades out after 24 months. Gender analyses reveal that the intervention was more beneficial for girls. Furthermore, sensitivity analyses show that the estimated effects seem downward biased by additional treatment for the control families. Analyzing the infant skill formation process reveals self-productivity of skills but in different magnitude for boys and girls.
    Keywords: Early Childhood Intervention, Randomized Experiment
    JEL: J13 J12 I21 H52
    Date: 2013–09
  27. By: Kang, Jee Eun
    Abstract: This dissertation focuses on the integration of the Household Activity Pattern Problem (HAPP) with various locational decisions considering both supply and demand sides. We present several methods to merge these two distinct areas—transportation infrastructure and travel demand procedures—into an integrated framework that has been previously exogenously linked by feedback or equilibrium processes. From the demand side, travel demand for non-primary activities is derived from the destination choices that a traveler makes that minimizes travel disutility within the context of considerations of daily scheduling and routing. From the supply side, the network decisions are determined as an integral function of travel demand rather than a given fixed OD matrix. First, the Location Selection Problem for the Household Activity Pattern Problem (LSP-HAPP) is developed. LSP-HAPP extends the HAPP by adding the capability to make destination choices simultaneously with other travel decisions of household activity allocation, activity sequence, and departure time. Instead of giving a set of pre-fixed activity locations to visit, LSPxviii HAPP chooses the location for certain activity types given a set of candidate locations. A dynamic programming algorithm is adopted and further developed for LSP-HAPP in order to deal with the choices among a sizable number of candidate locations within the HAPP modeling structure. Potential applications of synthetic pattern generation based on LSP-HAPP formulation are also presented. Second, the Location – Household Activity Pattern Problem (Location-HAPP), a facility location problem with full-day scheduling and routing considerations is developed. This is in the category of Location-Routing Problems (LRPs), where the decisions of facility location models are influenced by possible vehicle routings. Location-HAPP takes the set covering model as a location strategy, and HAPP as the scheduling and routing tool. The proposed formulation isolates each vehicle’s routing problem from those of other vehicles and from the master set covering problem. A modified column generation that uses a search method to find a column with a negative reduced price is proposed. Third, the Network Design Problem is integrated with the Household Activity Pattern Problem (NDP-HAPP) as a bilevel optimization problem. The bilevel structure includes an upper level network design while the lower level includes a set of disaggregate household itinerary optimization problems, posed as HAPP or LSP-HAPP. The output of upper level NDP (level-ofservice of the transportation network) becomes input data for the lower level HAPP that generates travel demand which becomes the input for the NDP. This is advantageous over the conventional NDP that outputs the best set of links to invest in, given an assumed OD matrix. Because the proposed NDP-HAPP can output the same best set of links, a new OD matrix and a detailed temporal distribution of activity participation and travel are created. A decomposed xix heuristic solution algorithm that represents each decision makers’ rationale shows optimality gaps of as much as 5% compared to exact solutions when tested with small examples. Utilizing the aforementioned models, two transportation sustainability studies are then conducted for the adoption of Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFVs). The challenges in adopting AFVs are directly related to the transportation infrastructure problems since the initial AFV refueling locations will need to provide comparable convenient travel experience for the early adopters when compared to the already matured gasoline fuel based transportation infrastructure. This work demonstrates the significance of the integration between travel demand model and infrastructure problems, but also draws insightful policy measurements regarding AFV adoption. The first application study attempts to measure the household inconvenience level of operating AFVs. Two different scenarios are examined from two behavioral assumptions – keeping currently reported pattern and minimizing the inconvenience cost through HAPPR or HAPPC. From these patterns, the personal or household inconvenience level is derived as compared to the original pattern, providing quantified data on how the public sector would compensate for the increases in travel disutility to ultimately encourage the attractiveness of AFVs. From the supply side of the AFV infrastructure, Location-HAPP is applied to the incubation of the minimum refueling infrastructure required to support early adoption of Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles (HFCVs). One of the early adoption communities targeted by auto manufacturers is chosen as the study area, and then three different values of accessibility are tested and measured in terms of tolerances to added travel time. Under optimal conditions, refueling trips are found to be toured with other activities. More importantly, there is evidence xx that excluding such vehicle-infrastructure interactions as well as routing and scheduling interactions can result in over-estimation of minimum facility requirement.
    Keywords: Engineering, household activity pattern problem
    Date: 2013–09–01
  28. By: Krishnan, Pramila; Patnam, Manasa
    Abstract: The increased adoption of fertiliser and improved seeds are key to raising land productivity in Ethiopian agriculture. However, as in much of sub-Saharan Africa, the adoption and diffusion of such technologies has been slow. We use data from the Ethiopia between 1999-2009 to examine the role of learning from extension agents versus neighbours for both improved seeds and fertiliser. We use the structure of spatial networks of farmers and panel data to identify these influences and find that while the initial impact of extension agents was high, the effect wore off, in contrast to learning from neighbours.
    Keywords: diffusion; social learning; social networks
    JEL: C31 Q16
    Date: 2013–07
  29. By: Anette Haas; Michael Lucht (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB))
    Abstract: To examine the impact of migrants on the average firm productivity, wages and welfare we construct a general equilibrium model with monopolistic competition a la Melitz (2003) considering heterogeneous firms with different productivity levels and imperfect substitutability between migrants and natives. This gives rise to wage differences between natives and migrants. As a consequence firms with a higher share of migrants realize wage cost advantages. The heterogeneous distribution of migrants in our model might foster regional disparities. In the long run equilibrium it depends on the migrant share, which kind of firms survive in the market. Above a certain migrant share only those firms stay in the market which are highly productive or are able to compensate a lower productivity level by wage cost advantages. By modeling this process, we show that a higher migrant share may explain a higher average productivity in a region. Though the relative wages of natives to migrants increase in the migrant share, in contrast the welfare effects for natives are ambiguous: it might be the case that in a region with a higher migrant share the welfare of a native can be lower compared to a worker in a region of the same size with lower migrant share.
    Keywords: immigration, firm heterogeneity, skills, tasks, regional labor markets
    JEL: R23 J15 J24 J61
    Date: 2013–09
  30. By: Junankar, Pramod N. (Raja) (University of New South Wales); Shonchoy, Abu (Institute of Developing Economies (IDE-JETRO))
    Abstract: This paper studies the characteristics of the workers in the informal economy and whether migrants treat this sector as a temporary location before moving on to the organised or formal sector to improve their life time income and life style. We limit our study to the Indian urban (non-Agricultural) sector and study the characteristics of the household heads that belong to the Informal Sector (Self Employed and Informal Wage Workers) and the Formal Sector. We find that household heads that are less educated, come from the poorer households, lower social groups (castes and religions) are more likely to be in the informal sector. We distinguish between migrants who come from rural areas and urban areas to their present urban location. We find that the longer duration of a rural migrant in the urban area, the lower the probability that the household head would be in the informal wage labour sector.
    Keywords: informal labour markets, migrant, caste, religion
    JEL: O17 J15 J61 J42
    Date: 2013–08
  31. By: Wolfgang Dauth; Sebastian Findeisen; Jens Suedekum
    Abstract: We analyze the effects of the unprecedented rise in trade between Germany and “the East” – China and Eastern Europe – in the period 1988 – 2008 on German local labor markets. Using detailed administrative data, we exploit the cross-regional variation in initial industry structures and use trade flows of other high-income countries as instruments for regional import and export exposure. We find that the rise of “the East” in the world economy caused substantial job losses in German regions specialized in import-competing industries, both in manufacturing and beyond. Regions specialized in export-oriented industries, however, experienced even stronger employment gains and lower unemployment. In the aggregate, we estimate that this trade integration has caused some 493,000 additional jobs in the economy and contributed to retaining the manufacturing sector in Germany. We also conduct our analysis at the individual worker level, and find that trade had a stabilizing overall effect on employment relationships.
    Keywords: International trade, import competition, export opportunities, local labor markets, employment, China, Eastern Europe, Germany
    JEL: F16 J31 R11
    Date: 2013–08
  32. By: International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
    Keywords: Housing prices;Credit demand;Banks;Credit risk;Risk management;Financial stability;Financial Sector Assessment Program;France;
    Date: 2013–07–01
  33. By: Luc Eyraud; Marialuz Moreno Badia
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to assess whether expenditure decentralization has contributed to weakening fiscal performance in Europe. Using a panel of EU15 countries for the period 1995-2011, we estimate three econometric models and ask the following questions: (1) does the form of spending decentralization affect the general government fiscal balance?; (2) is there evidence of spending duplication?; and (3) are soft budget constraints prevalent at the subnational level in Europe? Our results indicate that current decentralization models may have some shortcomings and efforts to achieve fiscal consolidation would require improvements in three areas: better matching subnational spending and revenues; reshaping some expenditure assignments to reduce overlap; and improving the effectiveness of institutional arrangements at the subnational level.
    Keywords: Government expenditures;Europe;Fiscal consolidation;Economic models;Cross country analysis;fiscal federalism, local governments, fiscal balance, EU
    Date: 2013–02–25
  34. By: Francesco Devicienti (Università di Torino); Cristian Bartolucci (Collegio Carlo Alberto)
    Abstract: We propose a test that uses information on workers' mobility, wages and firms' profits to identify the sign and strength of assortative matching. The basic intuition underlying our empirical strategy is that, in the presence of positive (negative) assortative matching, good workers are more (less) likely to move to better firms than bad workers. Assuming that agents' payoffs are increasing in their own types allows us to use within-firm variation on wages to rank workers by their types and firm profits to rank firms. We exploit a panel data set that combines Social Security earnings records for workers in the Veneto region of Italy with detailed balance-sheet information for employers. We find robust evidence that positive assortative matching is a pervasive phenomenon in the labor market. This result is in contrast with what we find from correlating the worker and firm fixed effects in standard Mincerian wage equations.
    Date: 2013
  35. By: Vincenzo Atella; Partha Deb
    Abstract: This article examines the long term physical and mental health effects of internal migration focusing on a relatively unique migration experience from Southern and Northeastern regions of Italy to Northwestern regions and to the region around Rome concentrated over a relatively short period from 1950-1970. OLS regression estimates show significant evidence of a migration effect among early-cohort females on physical health. We find no evidence of migration-health effects for the later cohort, nor for males in the early cohort. We use finite mixture models to further explore the possibility of heterogeneous effects and find that there is a significant and substantial improvement in physical and mental health for a fraction of migrant females in the early cohort but not for others. Analysis of the group for which effects are significant suggest that health effects are concentrated among rural females in the early cohort.
    JEL: C21 I15
    Date: 2013–09

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