nep-ure New Economics Papers
on Urban and Real Estate Economics
Issue of 2018‒01‒08
53 papers chosen by
Steve Ross
University of Connecticut

  1. Low Homeownership in Germany - A Quantitative Exploration By Leo Kaas; Georgi Kocharkov; Edgar Preugschat; Nawid Siassi
  2. Geographic variation in intra-city house price appreciation over the boom-bust cycle: evidence from Auckland, NZ By Leon Stirk-Wang; Paul Thorsnes
  3. The Effect of Court-Ordered Hiring Guidelines on Teacher Composition and Student Achievement By Cynthia (CC) DuBois; Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach
  4. United Kingdom: reducing regional disparities in productivity Peter Gal and Jagoda Egeland By Peter Gal; Jagoda Egeland
  5. France: Promoting economic opportunities and well-being in poor neighbourhoods By Nicola Brandt
  6. Linguistic distance, networks and migrants' regional location choice By Bredtmann, Julia; Nowotny, Klaus; Otten, Sebastian
  7. Highways, Market Access, and Spatial Sorting By Stephan Fretz; Raphael Parchet; Frédéric Robert-Nicoud
  8. Education Reform in General Equilibrium: Evidence from California’s Class Size Reduction By Mike Gilraine; Hugh Macartney; Rob McMillan
  9. It's Time to Learn: Understanding the Differences in Returns to Instruction Time By Andrés Barrios F.; Giulia Bovini
  10. Valuation models for low-income housing By Yelin Li
  11. Unawareness and Selective Disclosure: The Effect of School Quality Information on Property Prices By John Haisken-DeNew; Syed Hasan; Nikhil Jha; Mathias Sinning
  12. Maximizing the Collective Learning Effects in Regional Economic Development By Jian Gao
  13. The Paper Trail of Knowledge Spillovers: Evidence from Patent Interferences By Ganguli, Ina; Lin, Jeffrey; reynolds, nicholas
  14. Alternative Land Price Indexes for Commercial Properties in Tokyo By Diewert, Erwin; Shimizu, Chihiro
  15. Decompositions of Spatially Varying Quantile Distribution Estimates: The Rise and Fall of Tokyo House Prices By McMillen, Daniel; Shimizu, Chihiro
  16. Cluster Dynamics: Learning from Competitiveness Cluster Policy. The Case of 'Secure Communicating Solutions' in the French Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur Region By Christian Longhi
  17. Can Community Development Improve Health? Emerging Opportunities for Collaboration between the Health and Community Development Sectors By Fazili, Sameera
  18. Denver WIOA Out-of-School Youth Services: Using Evidence-Informed Practices to Advance Youth Self-Sufficiency and Well-Being By Annalisa Mastri; Marykate Zukiewicz
  19. Bunching on the Autobahn? Speeding Responses to a 'Notched' Penalty Scheme By Christian Traxler; Franz Westermaier; Ansgar Wohlschlegel
  20. The Academic and Behavioral Consequences of Discipline Policy Reform: Evidence from Philadelphia By Matthew P. Steinberg; Johanna Lacoe
  21. Local Border Reforms and Economic Activity By Peter H. Egger; Marko Köthenbürger; Gabriel Loumeau
  22. On the Optimal Design of Place-Based Policies: A Structural Evaluation of EU Regional Transfers By Yashar Blouri; Maximilian von Ehrlich
  23. Constraints on LTV as a Macroprudential Tool: A Precautionary Tale By José García-Montalvo; Josep M. Raya
  24. Who Becomes an Inventor in America? The Importance of Exposure to Innovation By Alex Bell; Raj Chetty; Xavier Jaravel; Neviana Petkova; John Van Reenen
  25. Violence, Psychological Stress and Educational Performance during the “War on Drugs†in Mexico By Maren M. Michaelsen; Paola Salardi
  26. Inequality in Brazil: A Regional Perspective By Carlos Góes; Izabela Karpowicz
  27. Fiscal Federalism and Regional Performance By Gabriel Di Bella; Oksana Dynnikova; Francesco Grigoli
  28. A stress test framework for the German residential mortgage market: Methodology and application By Siemsen, Thomas; Vilsmeier, Johannes
  29. Sorting out Neighbourhood Effects Using Sibling Data By Hedman, Lina; Manley, David; van Ham, Maarten
  30. Evaluation of the Teacher Incentive Fund: Final Report on Implementation and Impacts of Pay-for-Performance Across Four Years By Hanley Chiang; Cecilia Speroni; Mariesa Herrmann; Kristin Hallgren; Paul Burkander; Alison Wellington
  31. Bank Lending in the Knowledge Economy By Giovanni Dell'Ariccia; Dalida Kadyrzhanova; Camelia Minoiu; Lev Ratnovski
  32. The Expenses of Real Estate Funds in a Small Market: Their Determinants By Alves, Paulo
  33. Drivers of industrialisation: intersectoral evidence from the Low Countries in the nineteenth century By Philips, Robin C. M.; Földvàri, Péter; Van Leeuwen, Bas
  34. Credit Supply Shocks, Network Effects, and the Real Economy By Laura Alfaro; Manuel García; Enrique Moral-Benito
  35. Cohesion Policy Incentives for Collaborative Industrial Research. The Evaluation of a Smart Specialisation Forerunner Programme By Riccardo Crescenzi; Guido de Blasio; Mara Giua
  36. Shopping for Schools: Mapping Choice Architecture in the Education Marketplace By Steven Glazerman
  37. Energy efficiency as an instrument of regional development policy? Trading-off the benefits of an economic stimulus and energy rebound effects By Gioele Figus; Karen Turner; Patrizio Lecca; Peter G McGregor
  38. Social aspirations in European banks: peer-influenced risk behavior By Lyócsa, Štefan; Výrost, Tomáš; Baumöhl, Eduard
  39. Badly hurt? Natural disasters and direct firm effects By Noth, Felix; Rehbein, Oliver
  40. Do Emigrants Self-Select Along Cultural Traits? Evidence from the MENA Countries By Frédéric Docquier; Aysit Tansel; Riccardo Turati
  41. The Social Origins of Inventors By Philippe Aghion; Ufuk Akcigit; Ari Hyytinen; Otto Toivanen
  42. Assessing the Severity of Rent Burden on Low-Income Families By Jeff Larrimore; Jenny Schuetz
  43. Can Regional Decentralisation Shift Health Care Preferences? By Joan Costa-i-Font; Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell
  44. The Short-Run Employment Effects of the German Minimum Wage Reform By Caliendo, Marco; Fedorets, Alexandra; Preuß, Malte; Schröder, Carsten; Wittbrodt, Linda
  45. Wealth Inequalities in Perceptions of School Quality in Pakistan By Marine De Talance
  46. Is Occupational Licensing a Barrier to Interstate Migration? By Janna E. Johnson; Morris M. Kleiner
  47. The Economic Effects of Density: A Synthesis By Gabriel Ahlfeldt; Elisabetta Pietrostefani
  48. What do you mean by ‘good’? The search for exceptional primary schools in South Africa’s no-fee school system By Gabrielle Wills
  49. Family, Community and Life-Cycle Earnings: Evidence from Siblings and Youth Peers By Paul Bingley; Lorenzo Cappellari; Konstantinos Tatsiramos
  50. Ideas Production and International Knowledge Spillovers: Digging Deeper into Emerging Countries By Kul B Luintel; Mosahid Khan
  51. Older People in Sweden Without Means: On the Importance of Age at Immigration for Being 'Twice Poor' By Gustafsson, Björn Anders; Mac Innes, Hanna; Österberg, Torun
  52. Similar or Different? Exploring the Gap between Federal and Regional Elections in Russia By Rostislav Turovsky; Marina Sukhova
  53. One-block train formation in large-scale railway networks: An exact model and a tree-based decomposition algorithm By Chen, C.; Dollevoet, T.A.B.; Zhao, J.

  1. By: Leo Kaas; Georgi Kocharkov; Edgar Preugschat; Nawid Siassi
    Abstract: The homeownership rate in Germany is one of the lowest among advanced economies. To better understand this fact, we analyze the role of three specific policies which discourage homeownership in Germany: an extensive social housing sector with broad eligibility criteria, high transfer taxes when buying real estate, and no tax deductions for mortgage interest payments by owner-occupiers. We build a lifecycle model with uninsurable income risk and endogenous homeownership in order to quantify the policy effects on homeownership and welfare. We find that all three policies have sizable effects on the homeownership rate. At the same time, household welfare would be reduced by moving to a policy regime with low transfer taxes and mortgage interest tax deductions, but it would improve in the absence of social housing, in particular when coupled with housing subsidies for low-income households.
    Keywords: homeownership, housing markets
    JEL: E21 R21 R38
    Date: 2017
  2. By: Leon Stirk-Wang (Department of Economics, University of Otago, New Zealand); Paul Thorsnes (Department of Economics, University of Otago, New Zealand)
    Abstract: This study contributes to the empirical literature on intra-urban house-price dynamics. A demand shock affects metropolitan-area house prices, but the effect of the shock varies across neighborhoods. For example, in a relatively recent paper, Guerrieri et al. (2013) provide evidence that the variation in house-price appreciation across the census tracts in relatively large US cities is greater than the variation across cities overall; the intra-city standard deviation in house prices is about 0.5 relative to the inter-city standard deviation of about 0.2. Of interest is why this happens. More specifically, this paper contributes to the literature that addresses the question of how and why the effects of a demand shock flow through the metro-area housing market. The key data needed for this kind of analysis consist of price indices at relatively small geographic scales. Guerrieri et al., for example, use annual Case-Shiller repeat-sales indices at the zip code level. They also use much less frequent information from the decennial census at the smaller census tract level. In this study we use observations on estimates of median house value on 1 July in each of 111 census ‘area units’ – similar to US census tracts – in Auckland, New Zealand from year 2000 through 2016. This gives us relatively high spatial resolution and, conveniently, this time period covers a general boom, a mild bust, and then another boom in house prices
    Date: 2017–12
  3. By: Cynthia (CC) DuBois; Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of a court-ordered hiring guidelines intended to increase the share of black teachers employed in a school district in Louisiana. We find that the court-ordered hiring policy significantly increased the share of teachers who are black in the district relative to the rest of the state, and to a matched synthetic control sample. The policy also increased the share of new teachers hired who are black, and decreased the student-teacher representation gap, defined as the difference in enrollment share black among students and teachers in a district. There were increases in the share of black teachers observed in both predominately white and predominately black schools in the district. The policy had no measurable impacts—either positive or negative—on district-level measures of student achievement.
    JEL: I21 I28 J7
    Date: 2017–12
  4. By: Peter Gal (OECD); Jagoda Egeland (OECD)
    Abstract: The United Kingdom displays large regional disparities in productivity compared to most other OECD countries, with a large gap between London and most other regions. This holds back aggregate productivity and growth, and contributes to regional differences in living standards. To make the lagging regions more attractive to companies and workers, transport links between and within cities should be improved by increasing infrastructure investment outside London. Another policy priority is to improve the local business environment through more spending on innovation and increased support for investment and skills. Also, local authorities should have more freedom in setting education and training goals and the land-use planning system has to be more responsive to meet housing needs in cities. The role of subnational government is sub-par relative to the OECD average, but more devolution has recently been introduced in several city-regions. Such efforts towards more decentralization need to continue to cover larger parts of the country and involve greater transfers of powers and responsibilities at the local level.
    Keywords: decentralisation, Productivity, regional development, transport
    JEL: O4 R3 R4 R5
    Date: 2018–01–10
  5. By: Nicola Brandt
    Abstract: Thanks to a highly developed welfare state, poverty is moderate on average in France, but – as in other countries – highly concentrated in some neighbourhoods. Their residents face many social disadvantages, including high unemployment and inactivity, schools with many struggling children, often run-down housing and urban infrastructure, and a lack of local enterprises, services and amenities. The government focuses a wide array of policies on these areas to promote better schooling outcomes, employment and local economic activity. Urban renewal and public housing policies aim explicitly at promoting social mixing, often presented as an anti-ghetto policy. Evidence suggests that targeted investment in transport and housing infrastructure as well as education and training could go a long way to improving economic opportunities and well-being in poor areas. In contrast, special economic zones with tax breaks to attract business to these areas have a mixed track record at best. Greater social mixing is difficult to engineer, and it is far from clear if this by itself would improve the lives of the poor. There is a need to better link urban, social and judicial policies favouring alternative sentencing and support for offenders to integrate into society to avoid vicious circles of social disadvantage and crime.
    Keywords: discrimination on the labour market, education and training policies, France, infrastructure investment, poor neighbourhoods, poverty, social housing, spatial mismatch, urban renovation
    JEL: I24 I28 I38 J78 R31 R40
    Date: 2018–01–10
  6. By: Bredtmann, Julia; Nowotny, Klaus; Otten, Sebastian
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the interaction between migrant networks and linguistic distance in the location choice of migrants to the EU at the regional level. We test the hypothesis that networks and the ability to communicate in the host country language, proxied by linguistic distance, are substitutes in the location decision. Based on individual level data from a special evaluation of the European Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS) and a random utility maximization framework, we find that networks have a positive effect on the location decisions while the effect of linguistic distance is negative. We also find a strong positive interaction effect between the two factors: networks are more important the larger the linguistic distance between the home country and the host region, and the negative effect of linguistic distance is smaller the larger the network size. In several extensions and robustness checks, we show that this substitutable relationship is extremely robust.
    Keywords: Location choice,ethnic networks,linguistic distance,EU migration,multilateral resistance
    JEL: F22 J61 R23
    Date: 2017
  7. By: Stephan Fretz; Raphael Parchet; Frédéric Robert-Nicoud
    Abstract: We design a spatial model featuring workers embodied with heterogeneous skills. In equilibrium, locations with improved market access become relatively more attractive to the high-skilled, high-income earners. We then empirically analyze the effects of the construction of the Swiss highway network between 1960 and 2010 on the distribution of income at the local level, as well as on employment and commuting by education level. We find that the advent of a new highway access within 10km led to a long-term 19%-increase of the share of high-income taxpayers and a 6%-decrease of the share of low-income taxpayers. Results are similar for employment data decomposed by education level, as well as for in- and out-commuters. Highways also contributed to job and residential urban sprawl.
    Keywords: transportation, highway, market access, income sorting
    JEL: D31 O18 H54 R11 R23
    Date: 2017
  8. By: Mike Gilraine; Hugh Macartney; Rob McMillan
    Abstract: This paper sheds new light on general equilibrium responses to major education reforms, focusing on a sorting mechanism likely to operate whenever a reform improves public school quality significantly. It does so in the context of California’s statewide class size reduction program of the late-1990s, and makes two main contributions. First, using a transparent differencing strategy that exploits the grade-specific roll-out of the reform, we show evidence of general equilibrium sorting effects: Improvements in public school quality caused marked reductions in local private school shares, consequent changes in public school demographics, and significant increases in local house prices – the latter indicative of the reform’s full impact. Second, using a generalization of the differencing approach, we provide credible estimates of the direct and indirect impacts of the reform on a common scale. These reveal a large pure class size effect of 0.11σ (in terms of mathematics scores), and an even larger indirect effect of 0.16σ via induced changes in school demographics. Further, we show that both effects persist positively, giving rise to an overall policy impact estimated to be 0.4σ higher after four years of treatment (relative to none). The analysis draws attention, more broadly, to conditions under which the indirect sorting effects of major reforms are likely to be first order.
    Keywords: Education Reform, General Equilibrium, Education Production, Sorting, Class Size Reduction, Persistence, Difference-in-Differences, Triple Differences
    JEL: H40 I21 I22
    Date: 2018–01–02
  9. By: Andrés Barrios F.; Giulia Bovini
    Abstract: As hours per day are inherently a limited resource, increasing daily instruction time reduces the amount of time pupils can dedicate to other activities outside school. We study how the effect of longer school days on achievement varies across students and schools. We exploit a large-scale reform of school schedules that substantially increased daily instruction time in Chilean primary schools. We show that the average effect of one additional year of exposure to the longer school day on reading and on mathematics test scores at the end of grade 4 masks substantial heterogeneity. Students from disadvantaged backgrounds benefit more from longer schedules, indicating that returns to time spent at school are larger the scarcer the learning opportunities available at home. Added instruction time yields higher gains in charter than in public schools, suggesting that more autonomy on administrative and pedagogical decisions may increase the effectiveness of other school inputs.
    Keywords: instruction time, education reform, heterogeneous effects, charter schools
    JEL: I28 I24 I20
    Date: 2017–12
  10. By: Yelin Li (Salem State University, USA)
    Abstract: Property tax valuation and assessment for low-income housing remain a challenge for real estate assessors, developers, property managers, and local governments. This paper reported the research findings on the use of valuation methods for real estate tax abatement in low-income properties gathered from real data. Based on data from income statements and balance sheets of client’s properties, valuation models for low-income housing versus market-price housing were proposed and the major variances were compared. From the examination of the major valuation methods used by states and localities, evidence was found to explain 1) How the fair market value method failed to apply to the tax assessment in Massachusetts that requires market-price value for property assessment purpose, and 2) why the income approach is pre-ferred in the asset valuation of low income housing. The findings showed the effectiveness of income approach in the absence of statutory mandates in the State of Massachusetts where a disparate body of case law is used. The paper shined light on valuing real estate encumbered with restrictions for assessment purposes, especially for properties vulnerable to changes in property taxes. It further suggested the need for a legislative resolution for clarity and consistency in valuation of low income housing.
    Keywords: valuation models, low-income housing, real estate tax assessment
    Date: 2017
  11. By: John Haisken-DeNew; Syed Hasan; Nikhil Jha; Mathias Sinning
    Abstract: The Australian Government launched the My School website in 2010 to provide standardised information about the quality of schools to the Australian public. This paper combines data from this website with home sales data for the state of Victoria to estimate the effect of the publication of school quality information on property prices. We use a difference-in-difference approach to estimate the causal effect of the release of information about high-quality and low-quality schools relative to medium-quality schools in the neighborhood and find that the release of information about high-quality schools increases property prices by 3.6 percent, whereas the release of information about low-quality schools has no significant effect. The findings indicate that many buyers are unaware of the relevance of school quality information and that real estate agents pursue a strategy of disclosing information about high-quality schools to increase the sales price. Results from a survey of Victorian real estate agents provide evidence in favor of this strategy.
    Keywords: School quality, housing markets, information asymmetry, public policy evaluation, difference-in-difference estimation
    JEL: D82 D84 I24 R31
    Date: 2016–12
  12. By: Jian Gao
    Abstract: Collective learning in economic development has been revealed by recent empirical studies, however, investigations on how to benefit most from its effects remain still lacking. In this paper, we explore the maximization of the collective learning effects using a simple propagation model to study the diversification of industries on real networks built on Brazilian labor data. For the inter-regional learning, we find an optimal strategy that makes a balance between core and periphery industries in the initial activation, considering the core-periphery structure of the industry space--a network representation of the relatedness between industries. For the inter-regional learning, we find an optimal strategy that makes a balance between nearby and distant regions in establishing new spatial connections, considering the spatial structure of the integrated adjacent network that connects all regions. Our findings suggest that the near to by random strategies are likely to make the best use of the collective learning effects in advancing regional economic development practices.
    Date: 2017–12
  13. By: Ganguli, Ina (University of Massachusetts–Amherst); Lin, Jeffrey (Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia); reynolds, nicholas (brown university)
    Abstract: We show evidence of localized knowledge spillovers using a new database of multiple invention from U.S. patent interferences terminated between 1998 and 2014. Patent interferences resulted when two or more independent parties simultaneously submitted identical claims of invention to the U.S. Patent Office. Following the idea that inventors of identical inventions share common knowledge inputs, interferences provide a new method for measuring spillovers of tacit knowledge compared with existing (and noisy) measures such as citation links. Using matched pairs of inventors to control for other factors contributing to the geography of invention and distance-based methods, we find that interfering inventor pairs are 1.4 to 4 times more likely to live in the same city or region. These results are not driven exclusively by observed social ties among interfering inventor pairs. Interfering inventors are also more geographically concentrated than inventors who cite the same prior patent. Our results emphasize geographic distance as a barrier to tacit knowledge flows.
    Keywords: Localized knowledge spillovers; multiple invention; patents; interferences
    JEL: O30 R12
    Date: 2017–12–21
  14. By: Diewert, Erwin; Shimizu, Chihiro
    Abstract: The SNA (System of National Accounts) requires separate estimates for the land and structure components of a commercial property. Using transactions data for the sales of office buildings in Tokyo, a hedonic regression model (the Builder’s Model) was estimated and this model generated an overall property price index as well as subindexes for the land and structure components of the office buildings. The Builder’s Model was also estimated using appraisal data on office building REITs for Tokyo. These hedonic regression models also generate estimates for net depreciation rates which can be compared. Finally, the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism constructs annual official land prices for commercial properties based on appraised values. The paper compares these official land prices with the land prices generated by the hedonic regression models based on transactions data and on REIT data. The results show that the Builder’s Model using transactions data can be used to estimate Tokyo office market indexes with a reasonable level of precision. The results also revealed that commercial property indexes based on appraisal and assessment prices lag behind the indexes based on transaction prices.
    Keywords: Commercial property price indexes, System of National Accounts, the builder’s model, transaction-based indexes, appraisal prices, assessment prices, land and structure price indexes, hedonic regressions, depreciation rates
    JEL: C2 C23 C43 D12 E31 R21
    Date: 2017–12
  15. By: McMillen, Daniel; Shimizu, Chihiro
    Abstract: We extend Machado-Mata’s (2005) approach for decomposing the differences in the distribution of a dependent variable across two samples to account for location when the models are estimated using conditional parametric procedures. We find that a substantial portion of the change in the distribution of condominium prices in Tokyo between the rapid rise in prices in 1986 – 1990 and the sharp decline in 1991 – 1995 is due to changes in the values of the explanatory variables. Changes in the locations of sales serve to shift the price distribution to the left because later sales were more likely to be farther from downtown Tokyo, where prices are lower.
    Keywords: Conditionally parametric, quantile regression, decomposition
    JEL: C14 C18 R30
    Date: 2017–12
  16. By: Christian Longhi (Université Côte d'Azur; CNRS, GREDEG)
    Abstract: The paper aims to identify the forms and dynamics of the organizational structures of high-tech clusters overtime. Since Markusen (1996), it is well acknowledged that diversity is an emergent property of clusters, but the interactions between local and non-local actors of the clusters are difficult to trace because of lack of relevant data. The cluster policies developed to fix the network failures between the heterogeneous actors – large and small firms, universities, research institutes – of the current processes of innovation provide new information opportunities. In France, Competitiveness Clusters work as a "factories of project"; the information they produce on collective R&D projects applying for subsidies provides a proxy of local and non-local relations of the clusters. Social network analysis is used to infer the organizational structure of the collective learning networks and trace their dynamics. The case studies considered are Sophia-Antipolis and Rousset, two high tech clusters which belong to the same Competitiveness Cluster, 'Secure Communicating Solutions' in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region. The paper highlights the decoupling of the two clusters overtime as a consequence of distinctive organizational structures. The diversity of the dynamics of the collective learning networks which emerges through the analysis of the collective R&D projects in the two high tech clusters shows that knowledge creation and innovation can follow different paths and questions the public policies implemented.
    Keywords: Cluster Policy, Competitiveness Cluster, Collective Learning Networks, Innovation, Social Network Analysis, Sophia Antipolis, Rousset
    JEL: R11 R58 L2 L52
    Date: 2017–12
  17. By: Fazili, Sameera (Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta)
    Abstract: The two sectors of community development and health have long worked in the same neighborhoods, but they have not always worked together. This is starting to change, due in part to a growing recognition among health experts of the social, economic, and environmental factors that drive health outcomes. These social determinants of health have become the basis for new collaborations between community development and health professionals. This paper introduces professionals in both sectors to this emerging area of practice through a series of case studies of innovators in the southeastern United States. Case studies look at ways to bring housing and health professionals together, opportunities to leverage community development finance tools, and efforts to use Pay for Success to improve Medicaid spending. This discussion paper reviews early lessons on how to build a successful health and community development partnership, including an examination of the incentives for community developers, health professionals, state and local governments, and philanthropy to participate in these collaborations.
    Keywords: social determinants of health; affordable housing; health and housing; community development financial institutions; Medicaid
    JEL: I11 I14 L31 P46 R51 Z18
    Date: 2017–12–01
  18. By: Annalisa Mastri; Marykate Zukiewicz
    Abstract: Mathematica examined services offered through a partnership between the Office of Economic Development and Denver Public Schools to provide career and educational support to out-of-school youth. We also assessed the extent to which services incorporated features of evidence-informed interventions.
    Keywords: Denver, WIOA, Youth Services, Self-Sufficiency, Well-Being
    JEL: J I
  19. By: Christian Traxler; Franz Westermaier; Ansgar Wohlschlegel
    Abstract: This paper studies drivers’ responses to a ‘notched’ penalty scheme in which speeding penalties are stepwise and discontinuously increasing in speed. We present survey evidence suggesting that drivers in Germany are well aware of the notched penalty structure. Based on a simple analytical framework we analyze the impact of the notches on drivers’ optimal speed choices. The model’s predictions are confronted with data on more than 150,000 speeding tickets from the Autobahn and 290,000 speed measures from a traffic monitoring system. The data provide evidence on modest levels of bunching, despite several frictions working against it. We analyze the normative implications and assess the scope for welfare gains from moving from a simple, notched penalty scheme to a more complex but less salient Pigouvian scheme.
    Keywords: notches, speeding tickets, stepwise penalty function, salience
    JEL: K40 D04
    Date: 2017
  20. By: Matthew P. Steinberg; Johanna Lacoe
    Abstract: The School District of Philadelphia (SDP) made dramatic changes to its code of conduct in 2012–2013, prohibiting the use of out-of-school suspensions for low-level conduct offenses—such as profanity and failure to follow classroom rules—and reduced the length of suspensions for more serious infractions.
    Keywords: Education, school reform, philadelphia
    JEL: I
  21. By: Peter H. Egger; Marko Köthenbürger; Gabriel Loumeau
    Abstract: In this paper, we study how local border reforms affect economic activity. To do so, we make use of large-scale municipal merger reforms in Germany to assess the effect of local border changes on the distribution of activity in space, an issue that has not been addressed in existing literature. To allow for a comparison of economic activity within unique geographical units over time, we use geo-coded light data as well as local land-use data. Adopting a difference-in-differences approach, we find evidence that municipalities absorbing their merger partners and hosting the new administrative center experience a significant increase in local activity, while the municipalities that are being absorbed and are losing the administrative center experience a decrease in such activity. The difference between the gains in activity from absorbing municipalities and the losses from absorbed ones appears positive. These hitherto undocumented results point to the importance of distance to the administrative center as a determinant of the spatial distribution of economic activity.
    Keywords: border effects, centripetal forces, nightlight data, administrative center, municipal mergers
    JEL: H70 R11 R12
    Date: 2017
  22. By: Yashar Blouri; Maximilian von Ehrlich
    Abstract: We quantify general equilibrium effects of place-based policies in a multi-region framework with mobility, trade and agglomeration economies. Using detailed data on EU transfers, we infer the local effects of different transfer types on productivity, income and transportation cost. Based on these estimates and the general equilibrium model we derive the spatial distribution of economic activity and the resulting aggregate welfare effects if (i) no transfers were paid and taxes set to zero, (ii) transfers were distributed uniformly, (iii) transfers were welfare-optimally distributed. Characterizing the optimal distributions, we reveal complementarities between transfer types and between transfers and local endowments.
    Keywords: economic geography, place-based policies, structural estimation subsidies, public investments, European structural funds
    JEL: R10 R50 F10 F20 H20
    Date: 2017
  23. By: José García-Montalvo; Josep M. Raya
    Abstract: The introduction of limits or regulatory penalties on high LTV ratios for residential mortgages is one of the most frequently used tools of macroprudential policy. The available evidence seems to indicate that this instrument can reduce the feedback loop between credit and house prices. In this paper, we show that these constraints on LTV ratios, used by Spanish banking regulators before the onset of the housing crisis of 2008, did not prevent that feedback loop. In the Spanish case, the fact that appraisal companies were mostly owned by banks led to a situation in which the LTV limits were used to generate appraisal values adjusted to the needs of the clients, rather than trying to appropriately represent the value of the property. This tendency towards over-appraisals produced important externalities in terms of a higher than otherwise demand for housing, and intensification of the feedback loop between credit and house prices.
    JEL: E52 E58 G28
    Date: 2017–12
  24. By: Alex Bell; Raj Chetty; Xavier Jaravel; Neviana Petkova; John Van Reenen
    Abstract: We characterize the factors that determine who becomes an inventor in America by using de-identified data on 1.2 million inventors from patent records linked to tax records. We establish three sets of results. First, children from high-income (top 1%) families are ten times as likely to become inventors as those from below-median income families. There are similarly large gaps by race and gender. Differences in innate ability, as measured by test scores in early childhood, explain relatively little of these gaps. Second, exposure to innovation during childhood has significant causal effects on children's propensities to become inventors. Growing up in a neighborhood or family with a high innovation rate in a specific technology class leads to a higher probability of patenting in exactly the same technology class. These exposure effects are gender-specific: girls are more likely to become inventors in a particular technology class if they grow up in an area with more female inventors in that technology class. Third, the financial returns to inventions are extremely skewed and highly correlated with their scientific impact, as measured by citations. Consistent with the importance of exposure effects and contrary to standard models of career selection, women and disadvantaged youth are as under-represented among high-impact inventors as they are among inventors as a whole. We develop a simple model of inventors' careers that matches these empirical results. The model implies that increasing exposure to innovation in childhood may have larger impacts on innovation than increasing the financial incentives to innovate, for instance by cutting tax rates. In particular, there are many "lost Einsteins" - individuals who would have had highly impactful inventions had they been exposed to innovation.
    Keywords: inventor, America, innovation
    Date: 2017–12
  25. By: Maren M. Michaelsen; Paola Salardi
    Abstract: We provide evidence that violence in Mexico related to the “war on drugs†from 2006-2011 had a significant negative impact on educational performance that is primarily attributable to acute psychological stress among students in the immediate aftermath of local violence. Using geographically and temporally disaggregated data we demonstrate that the largest impacts of violence on educational performance result from homicides committed within the vicinity of schools during the week immediately prior to national standardized tests. This short-term impact increases with geographic proximity and levels of violence, and dramatically exceeds the effects of longer-term violence spread over a full school year.
    Keywords: Violence, Primary Educational Performance, Psychological Stress, Mexico
    JEL: D74 I24 I25 O12
    Date: 2018–01–03
  26. By: Carlos Góes; Izabela Karpowicz
    Abstract: In this study, we document the decline in income inequality and a convergence in consumption patterns in Brazilian states in a new database constructed from micro data from the national households’ survey. We adjust the state-Gini coefficients for spatial price differences using information on households’ rental prices available in the survey. In a panel regression framework, we find that labor income growth, formalization, and schooling contributed to the decline in inequality during 2004-14, but redistributive policies, such as Bolsa Família, have also played a positive role. Going forward, it will be important to phase out untargeted subsidies, such as public spending on tertiary education, and contain growth of public sector wages, to improve budgetary efficiency and protect gains in equality.
    Date: 2017–10–31
  27. By: Gabriel Di Bella; Oksana Dynnikova; Francesco Grigoli
    Abstract: Sound regional policies are essential for balanced and sustained economic growth. The interaction of federal and regional policies with cross-regional structural differences affect human and physical capital formation, the business climate, private investment, market depth, and competition. This paper summarizes the main elements of Russia's fiscal federalism, describes the channels through which it operates, and assesses the effectiveness of regional transfers in reducing regional disparities. The results suggest that federal transfers to regions contributed to reducing disparities arising from heterogeneous regional tax bases and fi scal revenues. This allowed regions with initially lower per capita income to increase human and physical capital at higher rates. There is little evidence for transfers contributing to increased cross-regional growth synchronization. The results also suggest that federal transfers did not signifi cantly improve regional fi scal sustainability, a conclusion that is supported by the lack of convergence in per capita real income across Russian regions in the last 15 years.
  28. By: Siemsen, Thomas; Vilsmeier, Johannes
    Abstract: This paper exploits a recent and granular data set for 1,500 German LSIs to conduct a residential mortgage stress testing exercise. To account for model uncertainty when modeling PD dynamics we use a benchmark-constrained Bayesian model averaging approach that combines standard BMA with a benchmark derived from a quantile mapping between the historical PD distribution and the historical distribution of macro variables. To link LGD to current LTV we derive a reduced-form meta-dependency. In the baseline model, we quantify expected as well as unexpected losses. We show that German LSIs, though being mostly sufficiently capitalized, are susceptible to a corrective movement in house prices with a median CET1 ratio reduction of 1.5pp in the severely adverse scenario. We quantify the impact of RWA modeling on stress test results and show that the Standardized Approach leads to an up to 33% lower stress impact relative to the more risk-sensitive "pseudo-IRB" approach.
    Keywords: stress test,Bayesian model averaging,quantile mapping,survey data,German residential mortgage market,model uncertainty
    JEL: C11 C52 G21
    Date: 2017
  29. By: Hedman, Lina (Uppsala University); Manley, David (University of Bristol); van Ham, Maarten (Delft University of Technology)
    Abstract: Previous research has reported evidence of intergenerational transmission of both neighbourhood status and social and economic outcomes later in life; parents influence where their children live as adults and how well they do later in life in terms of their income. However, interactions between the individual, the childhood family and neighbourhood context and the neighbourhood experiences after leaving the parental home are often overlooked which might bias estimates of neighbourhood effects. It is likely that part of the effects attributed to neighbourhoods, are actually effects of the family in which someone was brought up. This study uses a sibling design to disentangle family and neighbourhood effects on income, and synthetic sibling pairs are used as a control group. The sibling design allows us to separate the effects of childhood family and neighbourhood contexts, but also between childhood neighbourhood effects and effects of the adult neighbourhood experiences. Using data from Swedish registers we show that the neighbourhood effect from both childhood and adult neighbourhood exposure is biased upwards by the influence of the family context. This leads to the conclusion that part of what appeared to be a neighbourhood effect was in fact a lasting family effect. Interestingly, we find that there is a long lasting effect of the family context on income later in life, and that this effect is strong regardless the individual neighbourhood pathway later in life.
    Keywords: siblings, non-random sorting, neighbourhood effects, family, income, longitudinal data
    JEL: I30 J60 R23
    Date: 2017–11
  30. By: Hanley Chiang; Cecilia Speroni; Mariesa Herrmann; Kristin Hallgren; Paul Burkander; Alison Wellington
    Abstract: In 2006, Congress established the Teacher Incentive Fund (TIF), which provides grants to support performance-based compensation systems for teachers and principals in high-need schools. Under a contract with the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences, Mathematica recently completed a study featuring an in-depth analysis of TIF’s implementation and the impacts of performance bonuses on educator effectiveness and student achievement.
    Keywords: teacher, incentive, bonus, student achievement, performance-based, compensation
    JEL: I
  31. By: Giovanni Dell'Ariccia; Dalida Kadyrzhanova; Camelia Minoiu; Lev Ratnovski
    Abstract: We study bank portfolio allocations during the transition of the real sector to a knowledge economy in which firms use less tangible capital and invest more in intangible assets. We show that, as firms shift toward intangible assets that have lower collateral values, banks reallocate their portfolios away from commercial loans toward other assets, primarily residential real estate loans and liquid assets. This effect is more pronounced for large and less well capitalized banks and is robust to controlling for real estate loan demand. Our results suggest that increased firm investment in intangible assets can explain up to 20% of bank portfolio reallocation from commercial to residential lending over the last four decades.
    Keywords: Intangible capital;bank lending, commercial loans, real estate loans, liquid assets, Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy, Government Policy and Regulation
    Date: 2017–11–07
  32. By: Alves, Paulo
    Abstract: This paper analyses the determinants of expenses for Portuguese real estate funds from 2007 to 2012 and is a pioneer study on the determinants of expenses concerning real estate funds. Closed-end and open-end real estate funds benefit from economies of scale. However, the most important result of this study concerns the fiscal policy implemented by the Portuguese authorities during the 1980s. Closed-end funds flourished by capturing tax benefits, even in the event that risk was not rewarded by return. Investors created financial instruments in which to allocate their real assets, instead of holding them individually.
    Keywords: Expenses; Real estate funds; Closed-end funds
    JEL: G23
    Date: 2016
  33. By: Philips, Robin C. M.; Földvàri, Péter; Van Leeuwen, Bas
    Abstract: In this paper, we trace the causes of regional industrial development in the nineteenth century Low Countries by disentangling the complex relationship between industrialisation, technological progress and human capital formation. We use sectoral differences in the application of technology and human capital as the central elements to explain the rise in employment in the manufacturing sector during the nineteenth century, and our findings suggest a re-interpretation of the deskilling debate. To account for differences among manufacturing sectors, we use population and industrial census data, subdivided according to their present-day manufacturing sector equivalents of the International Standard Industrial Classification (ISIC). Instrumental variable regression analysis revealed that employment in the manufacturing sector was influenced by so-called upper- tail knowledge and not by average educational levels, providing empirical proof of a so-called deskilling industrialisation process. However, we find notable differences between manufacturing sectors. The textiles and clothing sectors show few agglomeration effects and limited use of steam-powered engines, and average education levels cannot adequately explain regional industrialisation. In contrast, the location of the fast- growing and innovative machinery-manufacturing sector was more influenced by technology and the availability of human capital, particularly upper-tail knowledge captured by secondary school attendance rates.
    Keywords: industrialization; deskilling; human capital; steam engine; labour; economic growth
    JEL: J24 L60 N13 N63 O14 O41
    Date: 2017–12–06
  34. By: Laura Alfaro (Harvard Business School, Business, Government and the International Economy Unit); Manuel García (Universitat Pompeu Fabra); Enrique Moral-Benito (Banco de Espana)
    Abstract: We consider the real effects of bank lending shocks and how they permeate the economy through buyer-supplier linkages. We combine administrative data on all firms in Spain with a matched bank-firm-loan dataset incorporating information on the universe of corporate loans for 2003-2013. Using methods from the matched employer-employee literature for handling large data sets, we identify bank-specific shocks for each year in our sample. Combining the Spanish Input-Output structure and firm-specific measures of upstream and downstream exposure, we construct firm-specific exogenous credit supply shocks and estimate their direct and indirect effects on real activity. Credit supply shocks have sizable direct and downstream propagation effects on investment and output throughout the period but no significant impact on employment during the expansion period. Downstream propagation effects are quantitatively larger in magnitude than direct effects. The results corroborate the importance of network effects in quantifying the real effects of credit shocks and show that real effects vary during booms and busts.
    Keywords: bank-lending channel, matched employer-employee, input-output linkages.
    JEL: E44 G21 L25
    Date: 2017–12
  35. By: Riccardo Crescenzi; Guido de Blasio; Mara Giua
    Abstract: This paper evaluates a program of subsidies for Collaborative Industrial Research (co-)funded by the EU Cohesion Policy in Italy mobilizing over 1 billion euros. This program anticipated in the 2007-2013 funding cycle some of the key features of Smart Specialization Strategy (S3) programmes, offering evidence-based insights on potential challenges to the practical application of the S3 approach. The programme was not successful in boosting investments, value added or employment of beneficiary firms. The collaborative dimension of the projects added limited value and a more generous level funding would have not improved effectiveness. However, positive impacts emerged in low tech sectors.
    Keywords: Cohesion Policy, Smart Specialisation, Policy Evaluation, Innovation, European Union
    JEL: O18 R11 R58
    Date: 2017–12
  36. By: Steven Glazerman
    Abstract: School shopping websites are a critical source of information for school choice. This paper analyzes 14 prominent sites, documenting key design elements that make up the “choice architecture†within which choice policies play out.
    Keywords: school choice, web design, choice architecture
    JEL: I
  37. By: Gioele Figus (Centre for Energy Policy, University of Strathclyde); Karen Turner (Centre for Energy Policy, University of Strathclyde); Patrizio Lecca; Peter G McGregor (Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde)
    Abstract: Previous studies show that improving efficiency in household energy use can stimulate a national economy through an increase and change in the pattern of the aggregate demand. However, this may impact competitiveness. Here we find that in an open region, interregional migration of workers may give additional momentum to the economic expansion, by relieving pressure on the real wage and the CPI. Furthermore, the stimulus will be further enhanced by the greater fiscal autonomy that Scotland is set shortly to enjoy. By considering a range of CGE simulation scenarios we show that there is a tension between the economic stimulus from energy efficiency and the scale of rebound effects. However, we also show that household energy efficiency increases do typically generate a “double dividend†of increased regional economic activity and a reduction in carbon emissions.
    Keywords: energy efficiency, regional development policy, energy rebound, regional fiscal autonomy, general equilibrium
    JEL: D58 Q43 Q48 R28 R58
    Date: 2017–02
  38. By: Lyócsa, Štefan; Výrost, Tomáš; Baumöhl, Eduard
    Abstract: We test a sample of 3,586 banks from 33 European countries to determine whether performances above or below a social aspiration level (median performance of peer banks) influence banks’ aggregate risk levels. Our results are consistent with the behavioral theory of the firm and prospect theory in that we find that bank performance below a bank’s social aspiration level is followed by increased aggregate risk, i.e., risk-taking behavior in the subsequent year. Although under-performing banks tend to be risk-takers, large banks and banks with high aggregate risk levels tend to limit the increase in their aggregate risk levels.
    Keywords: social aspiration,European banks,performance,risk behavior,prospect theory
    JEL: D22 G2 L22 L25
    Date: 2018
  39. By: Noth, Felix; Rehbein, Oliver
    Abstract: We investigate firm outcomes after a major flood in Germany in 2013. We robustly find that firms located in the disaster regions have significantly higher turnover, lower leverage, and higher cash in the period after 2013. We provide evidence that the effects stem from firms that already experienced a similar major disaster in 2002. Overall, our results document a positive net effect on firm performance in the direct aftermath of a natural disaster.
    Keywords: natural disasters,firm outcomes
    JEL: G21 Q54
    Date: 2017
  40. By: Frédéric Docquier; Aysit Tansel; Riccardo Turati
    Abstract: This paper empirically investigates whether emigrants from MENA countries self-select on cultural traits such as religiosity and gender-egalitarian attitudes. To do so, we use Gallup World Poll data on individual opinions and beliefs, migration aspirations, short-run migration plans, and preferred destination choices. We find that individuals who intend to emigrate to OECD, high-income countries exhibit significantly lower levels of religiosity than the rest of the population. They also share more gender-egalitarian views, although the effect only holds among the young (aged 15 to 30), among single women, and in countries with a Sunni minority. For countries mostly affected by Arab Spring, since 2011 the degree of cultural selection has decreased. Nevertheless, the aggregate effects of cultural selection should not be overestimated. Overall, self-selection along cultural traits has limited (albeit non negligible) effects on the average characteristics of the population left behind, and on the cultural distance between natives and immigrants in the OECD countries.
    Keywords: international migration, self-selection, cultural traits, gender-egalitarian attitudes, religiosity, MENA region
    JEL: F22 O15 J61 Z10
    Date: 2017
  41. By: Philippe Aghion; Ufuk Akcigit; Ari Hyytinen; Otto Toivanen
    Abstract: In this paper we merge three datasets - individual income data, patenting data, and IQ data - to analyze the determinants of an individual's probability of inventing. We find that: (i) parental income matters even after controlling for other background variables and for IQ, yet the estimated impact of parental income is greatly diminished once parental education and the individual's IQ are controlled for; (ii) IQ has both a direct effect on the probability of inventing an indirect impact through education. The effect of IQ is larger for inventors than for medical doctors or lawyers. The impact of IQ is robust to controlling for unobserved family characteristics by focusing on potential inventors with brothers close in age. We also provide evidence on the importance of social family interactions, by looking at biological versus non-biological parents. Finally, we find a positive and significant interaction effect between IQ and father income, which suggests a misallocation of talents to innovation.
    JEL: I24 J18 J24 O31
    Date: 2017–12
  42. By: Jeff Larrimore; Jenny Schuetz
    Abstract: To assess the rent burden on families, we analyze housing expenditures of renters using the American Community Survey (ACS) Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS). In this note, we have shown that the lowest-income families face severe rent burdens.
    Date: 2017–12–22
  43. By: Joan Costa-i-Font; Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell
    Abstract: Uniform health care delivered by a mainstream public insurer - such as the National Health Service (NHS), seldom satisfies heterogeneous demands for care, and some unsatisfied share of the population either use private health care, or purchase private insurance (PHI). One potential mechanism to partially satisfy heterogeneous preferences for health care, and discourage the use of private health care, is regional health care decentralisation. We find robust estimates suggesting that the development of regional health services shifted both perceptions of, and preferences for, using the NHS, making it more likely individuals would use public health care and, consequently, reducing the uptake of PHI. These results are heterogeneous by income, education, and age groups; and are robust to placebo and other robustness and falsification checks.
    Keywords: National Health Service (NHS), political decentralization, use of private health care, private health insurance, health system satisfaction, demand for private health care
    JEL: H70 I18
    Date: 2017
  44. By: Caliendo, Marco (University of Potsdam); Fedorets, Alexandra (DIW Berlin); Preuß, Malte (Freie Universität Berlin); Schröder, Carsten (DIW Berlin); Wittbrodt, Linda (University of Potsdam)
    Abstract: We assess the short-term employment effects of the introduction of a national statutory minimum wage in Germany in 2015. For this purpose, we exploit variation in the regional treatment intensity, assuming that the stronger a minimum wage "bites" into the regional wage distribution, the stronger the regional labour market will be affected. In contrast to previous studies, we draw upon detailed individual wage data from the Structure of Earnings Survey (SES) 2014 and combine it with administrative information on regional employment. Moreover, using the Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), we are able to affirm the absence of anticipation effects and verify the assumption of a common trend in wages before the reform. Based on hourly wages, we compute two regional bite indicators – the share of affected employees and the Kaitz index – for 141 regional labour markets. In order to get a broader picture, we construct and compare a variety of these measures, including a bite based on full-time workers only. All of these display a considerably strong correlation. Overall, we do not find a pronounced significant effect on regular (full- and part-time) employment in most specifications, although some estimations yield a small significant reduction amounting to 78,000 (roughly 0.3% of all regular jobs). The results concerning marginal employment are more pronounced. We find evidence that mini-jobs dropped substantially from 2014 to 2015, making for a reduction of about 180,000 jobs (about 2.4% of all mini-jobs). This result is robust to a variety of sensitivity tests.
    Keywords: minimum wage, regional bite, employment effects
    JEL: J23 J31 J38
    Date: 2017–12
  45. By: Marine De Talance (LEDa - DIAL - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Economie de la mondialisation et du développement - Université Paris-Dauphine)
    Keywords: Education,Inequalities,Pakistan,Perceptions,Private Schools,Schoolingquality,Test scores
    Date: 2017–12–13
  46. By: Janna E. Johnson; Morris M. Kleiner
    Abstract: Occupational licensure, one of the most significant labor market regulations in the United States, may restrict the interstate movement of workers. We analyze the interstate migration of 22 licensed occupations. Using an empirical strategy that controls for unobservable characteristics that drive long-distance moves, we find that the between-state migration rate for individuals in occupations with state-specific licensing exam requirements is 36 percent lower relative to members of other occupations. Members of licensed occupations with national licensing exams show no evidence of limited interstate migration. The size of this effect varies across occupations and appears to be tied to the state specificity of licensing requirements. We also provide evidence that the adoption of reciprocity agreements, which lower re-licensure costs, increases the interstate migration rate of lawyers. Based on our results, we estimate that the rise in occupational licensing can explain part of the documented decline in interstate migration and job transitions in the United States.
    JEL: H7 J01 J08 J1 J11 J18 J24 J44 J58 J6 J8 K0 K2 K31 L38 L51 L98
    Date: 2017–12
  47. By: Gabriel Ahlfeldt; Elisabetta Pietrostefani
    Abstract: This paper synthesises the state of knowledge on the economic effects of density. We consider 15 outcome categories and 209 estimates of density elasticities from 103 studies. More than 50% of these estimates have not been previously published and have been provided by authors on request or inferred from published results in auxiliary analyses. We contribute own estimates of density elasticities of 16 distinct outcome variables that belong to categories where the evidence base is thin, inconsistent or non-existent. Along with a critical discussion of the quality and the quantity of the evidence base we present a set of recommended elasticities. Applying them to a scenario that roughly corresponds to an average high-income city, we find that a 1% increase in density implies positive per capita net present values of wage and rent effects of $280 and $485. The decrease in real wage net of taxes of $342 is partially compensated for by an aggregate amenity effect of $221 and there is a positive external welfare effect of $52. Density has important positive amenity and resource implications, but also appears to create a scarcity rent, which harms renters and first-time buyers.
    Keywords: compact, city, density, meta-analysis, elasticity, net present value
    JEL: R38 R52 R58
    Date: 2017
  48. By: Gabrielle Wills (Research on Socio-Economic Policy, Department of Economics, Stellenbosch University)
    Abstract: This paper describes a rigorous data collection process to find and verify the quality of what could potentially be high-functioning or high-performing schools accessible to the poor in three of South Africa’s nine provinces. A potential sample of outlier schools is selected using system-wide Universal Annual National Assessment data corroborated against school recommendations collected from a variety of system actors expected to be informed about school quality. Unfortunately, literacy testing in 31 purposively selected schools yields no example of high-performing, no-fee schools. However, we identify outlier or resilient students even in under-performing schools. Furthermore, within the no-fee school system there exists a continuum of functionality. Schools exist that while far from reaching good (or even adequate) median levels of English literacy, exhibit relatively higher literacy levels than other sample schools after controlling for student background differences. The presence of these relatively better performing sample schools (and performance variation more generally in the no-fee system) suggests that there is a middle-ground, a rightward movement away from dysfunction that can be reached. However, it is not clear that all system actors are able to detect variations in school quality. Our sample of respondents recommending ’good’ schools are only able to identify slightly better performing no-fee schools. For certain groups, specifically education district officials, enrolment growth appears to be a better indicator of their perceptions of ‘good’ than measures of student performance.
    Keywords: Exceptional schools, literacy, no-fee schools, school quality, South Africa
    JEL: I20 I21
    Date: 2017
  49. By: Paul Bingley; Lorenzo Cappellari; Konstantinos Tatsiramos
    Abstract: Using longitudinal data based on administrative registers for the population of Danish men we develop a model which accounts for the joint earnings dynamics of siblings and youth community peers. We are the first to decompose the sibling correlation of permanent earnings into family and community effects allowing for life-cycle dynamics; finding that family is the most important factor influencing earnings inequality over the life cycle. Community background explains a substantial share of the sibling correlation of earnings early in the working life, but its importance diminishes over time and becomes negligible after age 30.
    Keywords: sibling correlation, neighborhoods, schools, long-term inequality
    JEL: D31 J62
    Date: 2017
  50. By: Kul B Luintel; Mosahid Khan
    Abstract: Research and Development (R&D) activities of emerging countries (EMEs) have increased considerably in recent years. Recent micro studies and anecdotal evidence points to industrialized countries as the sources of knowledge in EMEs. In this context, we examine ideas production and international knowledge spillovers in a panel of 31 EMEs by accounting for six diffusion channels and two types (national versus USPTO) of patent filings. Knowledge spillovers to EMEs accruing from (i) the industrialized world, (ii) the emerging world, (iii) different country and regional groups, (iv) selected bilateral cases, and (v) those within the regional clusters of EMEs, are modeled. Spillovers from the industrialized world appear robust via geographical proximity and disembodied channels only. Other conduits, including trade flows, are either insignificant or not robust. Spillovers from the emerging world are virtually non-existent. Analyses of regional clusters of EMEs do not support any role of language, culture or geographical characteristics in knowledge diffusion. Overall, the breadth and depth of knowledge spillovers to EMEs appear extremely moderate; however, we find pockets (specific countries and certain groups) generating positive spillovers. A carefully choreographed policy focusing on such pockets might be fruitful. We hope that this study (i) complements the micro literature, (ii) furthers the existing macro literature and (iii) provides some new policy insights. Our results are robust to a range of robustness checks, including the estimators – a cointegration approach versus a simple fixed effects OLS estimator.
    Keywords: ideas production, diffusion, scale effects, panel integration and cointegration
    JEL: O30 O40 O47
    Date: 2017
  51. By: Gustafsson, Björn Anders (University of Gothenburg); Mac Innes, Hanna (University of Gothenburg); Österberg, Torun (University of Gothenburg)
    Abstract: This paper examines immigrant poverty at an older age in Sweden with an emphasis on late-in-life immigrants. We analyse tax data for the entire Swedish-born and non-Swedish-born population. The poverty status of a household is assessed using two criteria. First, the disposable income of the household in which the person lived in 2007 must be below 60 per cent of the median equivalent in-come in Sweden as a whole. Second, to be classified as 'twice poor' a household net assets must be below SEK 10,000. The results indicate that three out of four Swedish-born older persons were not classified as poor by either of the criteria, and only one per cent by both criteria. In contrast, among older persons born in low-income countries almost three out of four were classified as poor according to one of the criteria and not fewer than one in three according to both. Results of estimating logistic models indicate that the risk of being considered poor according to both criteria is strongly positively related to one's age at immigration. Our results indicate that it is crucial that migrants, particularly those who arrive after age 40, be better integrated into the Swedish labour market. To alleviate pov-erty among those migrants who are already of older age, increased transfers are probably the only possible alternative.
    Keywords: older people, poverty, immigrants, Sweden
    JEL: I32 J14 J15
    Date: 2017–11
  52. By: Rostislav Turovsky (National Research University Higher School of Economics); Marina Sukhova (National Research University Higher School of Economics)
    Abstract: This research is focused on the issue of differences in results received in elections for regional and federal legislatures that are held according to the proportional system. In particular, the question of whether the authorities’ decision to favour the combination of synchronous regional and federal elections has proved effective. This research showed that, in simultaneous elections held at different territorial levels, United Russia always delivers better results at a federal level than at a regional level, while oppositional parties, conversely, perform better at a regional level than they do at a federal level. This can be explained by the phenomenon of strategic voting, according to which voters prefer to cast their votes for more stable and major players in federal elections, and that they are more likely to vote sincerely in regional elections. However, in separate elections these trends are not retained, and United Russia in particular has been noted to perform better in regional campaigns held during the inter-election period, than it did in the preceding and subsequent federal elections. Analysis of the degree of competitiveness showed that differences in the level of competitiveness in federal and regional elections are almost always lower in combined elections than in separate elections
    Keywords: regional elections, federal elections, electoral support, competitiveness, effective number of parties, party system, strategic voting, nationalisation.
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2017
  53. By: Chen, C.; Dollevoet, T.A.B.; Zhao, J.
    Abstract: We investigate the one-block train formation problem (TFP) in the railway freight transportation industry given a car route for each shipment. The TFP considers both the block design and the car-to-block assignment in the tactical level. Moving beyond current researches on service network design, the unitary rule and the intree rule are taken into account in this study based on the Chinese railway background. We develop a linear binary programming formulation to minimize the sum of train cost and classication delay subject to limitations on the classication capacity and the number of sort tracks at each station. Furthermore, we propose a novel solution methodology that applies a tree-based decomposition algorithm. Here, we rst decompose the whole network into a series of rooted trees for each destination separately. Then, we divide the trees into suciently small subtrees, whose size is regulated by a node size parameter. Finally, we construct a restricted linear binary model for each subtree and solve these models sequentially to nd their optimal solutions. Our computational results on a realistic network from the Chinese railway system with 83 stations, 158 links and 5700 randomly generated demands show that the proposed algorithm can derive high-quality solutions within 3 hours. These solutions are on average 43.89% better than those obtained after solving the linear binary program for 1 day.
    Keywords: Railway Freight Transportation, Train Formation Problem, Service Network Design, Tree-based Decomposition, Arborescence Structure
    Date: 2017–12–01

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