nep-ure New Economics Papers
on Urban and Real Estate Economics
Issue of 2014‒06‒07
twenty-two papers chosen by
Steve Ross
University of Connecticut

  1. In a Small Moment: Class Size and Moral Hazard in the Mezzogiorno By Joshua D. Angrist; Erich Battistin; Daniela Vuri
  2. SafeTREC - UCTC Seminar: Post CEQA Traffic Analysis for New Bikeways By Campbell, Dave
  3. Property taxation, bounded rationality and housing prices By Elinder, Mikael; Persson, Lovisa
  4. Does Regional Training Supply Determine Employees’ Training Participation? By Katja Görlitz; Sylvi Rzepka
  5. Mortgage Default during the U.S. Mortgage Crisis By Thomas Schelkle
  6. “Job Accessibility, Employment and Job-Education Mismatch in the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona” By Antonio Di Paolo; Anna Matas; Josep Lluís Raymond
  7. SafeTREC - UCTC Seminar: Flexible Work Schedules and Transportation Behavior at UC Berkeley By Ng, Wei-Shiuen
  8. The Impact of Regional and Sectoral Productivity Changes on the U.S. Economy By Lorenzo Caliendo; Fernando Parro; Esteban Rossi-Hansberg; Pierre-Daniel Sarte
  9. Regional Branching and Smart Specialisation Policy By Ron Boschma; Carlo Gianelle
  10. Changes in the Eternal City: Inequalities, commons, and elections in Rome districts from 2000 to 2013 By Tomassi, Federico
  11. A Foursquare Quality of Life Agenda:Governing European Neighbourhood Policy, Open Method of Neighbourhoods Coordination, Smart Cross-Continental Regions Specialisation, and an Adaptive Synchronous European Strategic Energy Technology Plan By Serdar Türkeli
  12. Trust and Innovation in Europe: Causal, spatial and non-linear forces By Semih Akçomak; Hanna Müller-Zick
  13. On the Finite Sample Properties of Pre-test Estimators of Spatial Models By Gianfranco Piras; Ingmar R. Prucha
  14. The Regional Development Policy of Romania in the Post-Accession Period By Antonescu, Daniela
  15. Quantitative Easing and the Loan to Collateral Value Ratio By Tatiana Damjanovic; Šar?nas Gird?nas
  16. Human Capital Effects of Anti-Poverty Programs: Evidence from a Randomized Housing Voucher Lottery By Brian Jacob; Max Kapustin; Jens Ludwig
  17. Impact Estimates for Static Spatial Panel Data Models in R By Gianfranco Piras
  18. Selective Schooling Systems Increase Inequality By Simon Burgess; Matt Dickson; Lindsey Macmillan
  19. Collaboration networks in a French cluster: do partners really interact with each other? By Bastien Bernela; Rachel Levy
  20. Urbanization in Southeast Asia during the World War II Japanese Occupation and Its Aftermath By Gregg Huff; Gillian Huff
  21. How Strong are the Linkages between Real Estate and Other Sectors in China? By Wenlang Zhang; Gaofeng Han; Steven Chan
  22. Structure of local interactions in complex financial dynamics By X. F. Jiang; T. T. Chen; B. Zheng

  1. By: Joshua D. Angrist; Erich Battistin; Daniela Vuri
    Abstract: An instrumental variables (IV) identification strategy that exploits statutory class size caps shows significant achievement gains in smaller classes in Italian primary schools. Gains from small classes are driven mainly by schools in Southern Italy, suggesting a substantial return to class size reductions for residents of the Mezzogiorno. In addition to high unemployment and other social problems, however, the Mezzogiorno is distinguished by pervasive manipulation of standardized test scores, a finding revealed in a natural experiment that randomly assigned school monitors. IV estimates also show that small classes increase score manipulation. Estimates of a causal model for achievement with two endogenous variables, class size and score manipulation, suggest that the effects of class size on measured achievement are driven entirely by the relationship between class size and manipulation. Dishonest scoring appears to be a consequence of teacher shirking more than teacher cheating. These findings show how consequential score manipulation can arise even in assessment systems with few NCLB-style accountability concerns.
    JEL: C26 C31 I21 I28 J24
    Date: 2014–05
  2. By: Campbell, Dave
    Abstract: As California works on new guidelines to address transportation projects and CEQA, cities will still need to address the issue aside from CEQA of what level of traffic delay is appropriate to study when designing new bikeways and making pedestrian improvements. If CEQA shifts to vehicle miles traveled or auto trips generated, bikeway projects will essentially be exempt. Yet more than an exemption will be needed to satisfy public concerns. Traffic engineers' responsibilities are changing from 'moving traffic' to designing complete streets, but the solutions are always a compromise, particularly in urban, built-out areas. Bike East Bay (formerly East Bay Bicycle Coalition) is proposing a switch to limiting traffic delay studies to an analysis of how to minimize potential delays on roadways with new proposed bikeways--i.e. no longer using an uncomfortable level of delay as an excuse to block implementation of safe bikeways. Cities in the East Bay such as Concord, Dublin, El Cerrito, Oakland and more are struggling with new regional policies to build walkable, bike able neighborhoods around transit and urban infill areas, while still respecting the reality of traffic congestion that is so familiar to Bay Area commuters. How closely should cities look at traffic delay moving forward? What exact questions should they ask? While eliminating all questions about traffic delay is a likely long-term solution, a phased approach or a modified approach may be needed in an effort to speed up bikeway implementation.
    Keywords: Engineering
    Date: 2014–04–01
  3. By: Elinder, Mikael (Uppsala Center for Fiscal Studies); Persson, Lovisa (Uppsala Center for Fiscal Studies)
    Abstract: In 2008, the Swedish property tax was reformed and a cap on yearly tax liabilities was introduced. A large fraction of owner occupied houses was subject to a substantial decrease in the tax. When the reform was announced, most analysts projected - in line with tax capitalization theory - that the tax decrease would lead to significant increases in house prices. We estimate price responses and capitalization degrees, using various DID strategies, in which the price dynamics of houses that were subject to a generous tax reduction are compared to the price dynamics of houses with a more modest reduction. Our results are largely inconsistent with capitalization theory. For the majority of properties, we find no evidence that the tax cut led to increases in house prices. However, we nd evidence of partial capitalization in sub-markets with highly valued properties, highly educated citizens and were it is especially dicult to increase supply. We argue that theories of bounded rationality can help explain why house buyers may fail to take a tax decrease into account in the valuation of houses.
    Keywords: announcement effects; capitalization; financial literacy; housing market; inattention; saliency
    JEL: D01 D03 D04 D12 H22 H24 R21 R38
    Date: 2014–05–22
  4. By: Katja Görlitz; Sylvi Rzepka
    Abstract: Using data from the National Educational Panel Study of 2009/2010, this paper investigates the relationship between regional training supply and employees’ training participation. Controlling for other regional factors such as the local unemployment rate, the educational level, the population density and the regional industry composition, the results indicate that training participation is significantly higher in regions with many firms in the training supply market. The predictive power of the other regional factors is rather minor.
    Keywords: Training; local labor markets
    JEL: J24 R12
    Date: 2014–03
  5. By: Thomas Schelkle
    Abstract: Which of the main competing theories of mortgage default can quantitatively explain the rise in default rates during the U.S. mortgage crisis? This paper finds that the double-trigger hypothesis attributing mortgage default to the joint occurrence of negative equity and a life event like unemployment is consistent with the evidence. In contrast a traditional frictionless default model predicts a too strong increase in default rates. The paper also provides micro-foundations for double-trigger behavior in a model where unemployment may cause liquidity problems for the borrower. Using this framework for policy analysis reveals that a mortgage crisis may be mitigated at a lower cost by relieving the liquidity problems of borrowers instead of bailing out lenders.
    Keywords: Mortgage default, mortgage crisis, house prices, negative equity
    JEL: E21 G21 D11
    Date: 2014–05–16
  6. By: Antonio Di Paolo (Faculty of Economics, University of Barcelona); Anna Matas (GEAP, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona); Josep Lluís Raymond (GEAP, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)
    Abstract: This paper analyses the effect of job accessibility by public and private transport on labour market outcomes in the metropolitan area of Barcelona. Beyond employment, we consider the effect of job accessibility on job-education mismatch, which represents a relevant aspect of job quality. We adopt a recursive system of equations that models car availability, employment and mismatch. Public transport accessibility appears as an exogenous variable in the three equations. Even though it may reflect endogenous residential sorting, falsification proofs suggest that the estimated effect of public transport accessibility is not entirely driven by the endogenous nature of residential decisions.
    Keywords: employment, job-education mismatch, job accessibility, public transport, Barcelona JEL classification: J61, J21, O18, P25, R41
    Date: 2014–05
  7. By: Ng, Wei-Shiuen
    Abstract: Flexible work schedules could be a solution to the problems of increasing transportation demand, congestion, energy use, and carbon emissions. The higher the flexibility of work schedule, the less time employees would spend commuting to work. Hence, reducing trip frequency and total distance traveled. Flexible work schedules have been studied extensively in transportation studies, especially in areas of peak period congestion, road pricing, transit services peak and off-peak utilization, and flexibility of departure time for work. However, fewer studies have examined how the flexibility of work schedules could affect transportation mode and parking choices. This presentation will focus on the relationship amongst work schedule flexibility, mode choice and parking preferences at the University of California, Berkeley. campus. Understanding this complex relationship will enable a better evaluation of future transportation and parking policies.
    Keywords: Engineering
    Date: 2014–04–01
  8. By: Lorenzo Caliendo; Fernando Parro; Esteban Rossi-Hansberg; Pierre-Daniel Sarte
    Abstract: We study the impact of regional and sectoral productivity changes on the U.S. economy. To that end, we consider an environment that captures the effects of interregional and intersectoral trade in propagating disaggregated productivity changes at the level of a sector in a given U.S. state to the rest of the economy. The quantitative model we develop features pairwise interregional trade across all 50 U.S. states, 26 traded and non-traded industries, labor as a mobile factor, and structures and land as an immobile factor. We allow for sectoral linkages in the form of an intermediate input structure that matches the U.S. input-output matrix. Using data on trade flows by industry between states, as well as other regional and industry data, we obtain the aggregate, regional and sectoral elasticities of measured TFP, GDP, and employment to regional and sectoral productivity changes. We find that such elasticities can vary significantly depending on the sectors and regions affected and are importantly determined by the spatial structure of the US economy.
    JEL: E0 F1 F16 R12 R13
    Date: 2014–05
  9. By: Ron Boschma (CIRCLE - University of Lund); Carlo Gianelle (European Commission – JRC - IPTS)
    Abstract: This note studies the mechanisms through which regional economies diversify over time and formulates suggestions on how policy can influence such process. In particular, two closely related concepts will be defined, that is, technological relatedness and related variety. Regional diversification is a crucial process in order to develop new growth paths. It is understood as an emerging process through which new activities develop out of existing ones, but the scope and outcome of this process are fundamentally affected by technological and cognitive constraints. We discuss how technological relatedness may provide an input for effective policy making. In this respect, public policy should avoid picking winners that do not fit into the regional actual and potential industrial space and should prevent supporting declining industries that occupy a peripheral position in the industry space of a region. More in particular, we direct attention to various mechanisms through which new industries may be stimulated to connect to technologically related industries at the regional level. We also introduce the process of entrepreneurial discovery, in which entrepreneurs generate the key information guiding the selection of the domains of future regional specialization, and discuss its relationship with policy schemes based on related diversification.
    Keywords: European cohesion policy, Structural Funds, smart specialisation, related variety, regional branching, entrepreneurial discovery process
    Date: 2014–05
  10. By: Tomassi, Federico
    Abstract: In city districts in Rome, social and economic inequalities between centre and peripheral belts have been increasing over the last years, in parallel to the on-going suburban sprawl. Electoral data from 2000 to 2013 highlight sharp political polarization too. Votes for left-wing (right-wing) candidates are directly (inversely) proportional to proximity to Capitoline Hill. Left-wing coalition prevails where social centrality exists, that is in dense districts with widespread social relationships and many public or collective places. Conversely, right-wing parties prevail in far-off sprawled areas, with less opportunities to meet each other, where production and consumption of relational goods are less likely. Since such goods – according to scholars of civil economics – foster individual well-being and local development, they also affect political choices, challenging the so-called traditional ‘red belt’ in working-class districts until the 1980s.
    Keywords: City planning; commons; elections; Italy; relational goods; social capital
    JEL: H41 R14 Z13
    Date: 2014–05–30
  11. By: Serdar Türkeli (UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University)
    Abstract: In this paper, we re-construct the sphere of European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) with respect to empirical evidence collected from Web of Science and systematically meta-analysed. This analysis provides us the dynamics of the ENP knowledge asset in terms of stock and flow in temporal, spatial (geographical), organisational and contextual dimensions. The same meta-analysis is applied to Quality of Local Governance (QoLG) and dynamics of the re-constructed sphere of Quality of Local Governance is analysed, with cross-comparison to the ENP sphere. The main result indicates the sphere of Environment, Energy and Ecology (EEE) form the main sectoral gateway between the ENP and QoLG in a multi-level (international, national, regional) setting. We constructed our conceptual framework based on these evidence bases that gathered from spheres of the ENP and QoLG with comparison to analysis of temporal evolution of governance studies, and checked for theoretical debates of Bureaucratic Planning, Public Choice Theory and Structuralist Critiques, which are shown that incomplete to grasp this emerging EEE sphere. Although promising, New Regionalism concept is discussed with the condition of those current or potentially future developmentalist tendencies in the European Neighbourhood with respect to triangulated tensions between economic, social and environmental development. We listed and concluded that technological and social innovation are the vital enablers to activate this EEE Bridge in the governance of a foursquare quality of life agenda, with enhanced information and finance-based intelligent instruments interactive between i) European Neighbourhood Policy, ii) Open Method of ‘’Neighbourhoods’’ Coordination, iii) Smart ‘’Cross-Continental Regions’’ Specialisation, and iv) European ‘’Adaptive, Synchronous’’ Strategic Energy Technology Plan (ASSET-Plan).
    Keywords: European Neighbourhood policy, governance, regional policy
    Date: 2013–12
  12. By: Semih Akçomak (TEKPOL, Science and Technology Policy Studies, Middle East Technical University); Hanna Müller-Zick (Maastricht University)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of trust on innovation. In addition to generalised trust we use a range of other indicators that could measure trust and investigate which trust related variables could explain innovation in 20 European countries divided into 135 regions. We specifically look at causal, non-linear and spatial forces. Our findings indicate that only generalised trust and non-egoistic fairness have robust effects on innovation in Europe. Using historical data on the extent and existence of universities and an instrumental variable strategy we set up a causal relationship between trust and innovation. Even after controlling for causal, spatial and non-linear forces there is a significant direct impact of trust on innovation.
    Keywords: trust, social capital, innovation, EU
    Date: 2013–12
  13. By: Gianfranco Piras (Regional Research Institute, West Virginia University); Ingmar R. Prucha (Department of Economics, University of Maryland)
    Abstract: This paper explores the properties of pre-tst strategies in estimating a linear Cliff-Ord -type spatial model when the researcher is unsure about the nature of the spatial dependence. More specifically, the paper explores the finite sample properties of the pre-test estimators introduced in Florax et al. (2003), which are based on Lagrange Multiplier (LM) tests, within the context of a Monte Carlo study. The performance of those estimators is compared with that of the maximum likelihood (ML) estimator of the encompassing model. We find that, even in a very simple setting, the bias of the estimates generated by pre-testing strategies can be very large in some cases and the empirical size of tests can differ substantially from the nominal size. This is in contrast to the ML estimator.
    Keywords: cliff-ord, spatial, model, lagrange multiplier, monte carlo
    JEL: C4 C5
    Date: 2013–07
  14. By: Antonescu, Daniela (Romanian Academy, National Institute of Economic Research)
    Abstract: The general objective of this study is to evaluate regional disparities and the territorial convergence under the impact of the cohesion policy, in the context of the European Union integration. The specific objectives on which the research included in this work focused are the following: specific objectives: (i) analysis and interpretation of main theories of regional science, evolution and influence factors, main representatives; (ii) analysis of regional disparities in Romania in different fields of activity; (iii) analysis of convergence at regional level within the European Union; (iv) assessing the impact of implementing regional policy in Romania; and (v) suggestions regarding a possible model of regional strategy for the future programming period, from the perspective of the Europe 2020 Strategy. The study contains certain quantitative and qualitative estimates on the economic effects generated by Structural Funds at regional level in Romania. The data and information presented in the research paper regarding the gross impact of allocated resources are verified by computing first an average level of obtained effects. By using currently existing qualitative and quantitative data and some analysis techniques of territorial convergence recognised at international level, the study presents the trends at regional and local level in certain fields of activity.
    Keywords: regional convergence, economic and social cohesion, regional programmes and policies, territorial disparities, evaluation
    JEL: R11 R12 F02
    Date: 2013–12
  15. By: Tatiana Damjanovic (Exeter); Šar?nas Gird?nas (Exeter)
    Abstract: We study monetary optimal policy in a New Keynesian model at the zero bound interest rate where households use cash alongside house equity borrowing to conduct transactions. The amount of borrowing is limited by a collateral constraint. When either the loan to value ratio declines or house prices fall, we observe a decrease in the money multiplier. We argue that the central bank should respond to the fall in the money multiplier and therefore to the reduction in house prices or the loan to collateral value ratio. We also find that optimal monetary policy generates a large and persistent fall in the money multiplier in response to the drop in the loan to collateral value ratio.
    Keywords: optimal monetary policy, zero lower bound, quantitative easing, money multiplier, loan to value ratio, collateral constraint, house prices
    JEL: E44 E51 E52 E58
    Date: 2014–05–17
  16. By: Brian Jacob; Max Kapustin; Jens Ludwig
    Abstract: Whether government transfer programs increase the human capital of low-income children is a question of first-order policy importance. Such policies might help poor children if their parents are credit constrained, and so under-invest in their human capital. But it is also possible that whatever causes parents to have low incomes might also directly influence children’s development, in which case transfer programs need not improve poor children’s long-term life chances. While several recent influential studies suggest anti-poverty programs have larger human capital effects per dollar spent than do even the best educational interventions, identification is a challenge because most transfer programs are entitlements. We overcome that problem by studying the effects on children of a generous transfer program that is heavily rationed—means-tested housing assistance. We take advantage of a randomized housing voucher lottery in Chicago in 1997, for which 82,607 people applied, and use administrative data on schooling, arrests, and health to track children’s outcomes over 14 years. We focus on families living in unsubsidized private housing at baseline, for whom voucher receipt generates large changes in both housing and non-housing consumption. Estimated effects are mostly statistically insignificant and always much smaller than those from recent studies of cash transfers, and are smaller on a per dollar basis than the best educational interventions.
    JEL: H53 H75 I38 J13 J24 R38
    Date: 2014–05
  17. By: Gianfranco Piras (Regional Research Institute, West Virginia University)
    Abstract: In the present note we demonstrate how to implement the Lee and Yu (2010) procedure for fixed effects spatial panel data models available from the R (R Development Core Team 2012) package splm (Millo and Piras 2012). Additionally, we also show how to compute the impact estimates introduced by Kelejian, Tavlas, and Hondroyiannis (2006) and formalized in LeSage and Pace (2009). Unlike Matlab (MATLAB 2011), there was no R function specific to static panel data models for the calculation of the impact measures. After receiving numerous requests from the users of splm, we decided to extend the cross sectional functions available from spdep (Bivand 2013) to spatial panel data models.
    Keywords: spatial panel data models, R, computational methods, impact measures
    JEL: C4 C6 C21
    Date: 2013–05
  18. By: Simon Burgess (Department of Economics, University of Bristol); Matt Dickson (Department of Social and Policy Sciences, University of Bath); Lindsey Macmillan (Department of Quantitative Social Science, Institute of Education)
    Abstract: We investigate the impact on earnings inequality of a selective education system in which school assignment is based on initial test scores. We use a large, representative household panel survey to compare adult earnings inequality of those growing up under a selective education system with those educated under a comprehensive system. Controlling for a range of background characteristics and the current location, the wage distribution for individuals who grew up in selective schooling areas is quantitatively and statistically significantly more unequal. The total effect sizes are large: 14% of the raw 90-10 earnings gap and 18% of the conditional 90-10 earnings gap can be explained by differences across schooling systems
    Keywords: selective schooling, inequality, wages
    JEL: I24 J31
    Date: 2014–05–28
  19. By: Bastien Bernela (CRIEF - Centre de Recherche sur l'Intégration Economique et Financière - Université de Poitiers); Rachel Levy (LEREPS - Laboratoire d'Etude et de Recherche sur l'Economie, les Politiques et les Systèmes Sociaux - Université des Sciences Sociales - Toulouse I : EA4212 - École Nationale de Formation Agronomique - ENFA - Institut d'Études Politiques [IEP] - Toulouse - Université Toulouse le Mirail - Toulouse II)
    Abstract: We discuss the common hypothesis that, in collaborative projects, all partners interact with each other in homogeneous ways. More precisely, this research aims to determine the existence and frequency of Partner interactions in a collaborative project. From a survey of participants involved in innovation projects approved by a cluster, we collect information about 754 collaboration ties. We then test the impact of several determinants on the existence and frequency of their observed interactions.
    Keywords: Collaboration tie, interaction, inter-organizational networks, cluster, complete graph
    Date: 2014–05–05
  20. By: Gregg Huff (Pembroke College); Gillian Huff (Department of History)
    Abstract: This working paper analyzes demographic change in Southeast Asia’s main cities during and soon after the World War II Japanese occupation. We argue that two main patterns of population movements are evident. In food-deficit areas, a search for food security typically led to large net inflows to main urban centres. By contrast, an urban exodus dominated in food surplus regions because the chief risk was to personal safety, especially from Japanese and Allied bombing. Black markets were ubiquitous, and essential to sustaining livelihoods in cities with food-deficit hinterlands. In Rangoon and Manila, wartime population fluctuations were enormous. Famines in Java and northern Indochina severely impacted Jakarta and Hanoi through inflows of people from rural areas. In most countries, the war’s aftermath of refugees, revolution and political disruption generated major rural-urban population relocations. Turmoil in the 1940s had the permanent consequences of augmenting the primacy of Southeast Asia’s main cities and promoting squatter settlement.
    Keywords: urbanization, Southeast Asia, famine, World War II, entitlements, Japan
    JEL: N15 N90 N95 R11
    Date: 2014–04–20
  21. By: Wenlang Zhang (Hong Kong Monetary Authority); Gaofeng Han (Hong Kong Monetary Authority); Steven Chan (Hong Kong Monetary Authority)
    Abstract: International experience points to the critical role of stable property markets in maintaining financial stability. In China, the real estate sector has become increasingly important for the economy, but existing evidence has likely understated its importance as its linkages with other sectors have not been taken into account. This paper attempts to shed some light on these linkages which occur through both real and financial channels. Our analysis based on input-output tables shows that the linkages between the real estate and other sectors have strengthened through real channels, and that the real estate sector has been much more important to the economy's output than suggested by the share of its value added in total value added. The real estate industry is also closely linked to other sectors through various financial channels, including serving as collateral in credit expansion. We quantify these financial linkages by studying the spill-overs of credit risk across sectors using data of listed firms. In general, we find that corporate credit risk has risen in recent years, and that credit risk in the real estate sector can potentially have large-scale spill-over effects onto other sectors. Consequently, shocks to the property market could have much larger impact on the Chinese economy than suggested by headline figures.
    Date: 2014–05
  22. By: X. F. Jiang; T. T. Chen; B. Zheng
    Abstract: With the network methods and random matrix theory, we investigate the interaction structure of communities in financial markets. In particular, based on the random matrix decomposition, we clarify that the local interactions between the business sectors (subsectors) are mainly contained in the sector mode. In the sector mode, the average correlation inside the sectors is positive, while that between the sectors is negative. Further, we explore the time evolution of the interaction structure of the business sectors, and observe that the local interaction structure changes dramatically during a financial bubble or crisis.
    Date: 2014–05

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