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Multinationals and Anti-sweatshop Activism

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  • Ann Harrison
  • Jason Scorse

Abstract

During the 1990s, anti-sweatshop activists campaigned to improve conditions for workers in developing countries. This paper analyzes the impact of anti-sweatshop campaigns in Indonesia on wages and employment. Identification is based on comparing the wage growth of workers in foreign-owned and exporting firms in targeted regions or sectors before and after the initiation of anti-sweatshop campaigns. We find the campaigns led to large real wage increases for targeted enterprises. There were some costs in terms of reduced investment, falling profits, and increased probability of closure for smaller plants, but we fail to find significant effects on employment. (JEL F23, J31, J81, L67, O14, O15)

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 100 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 247-73

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:100:y:2010:i:1:p:247-73

Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.100.1.247
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  1. Aitken, B. & Harrison, A. & Lipsey, R.E., 1995. "Wages and Foreign Ownership: A Comparative Study of Mexico, Venezuela, and the United States," Papers 95-21, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  2. Bell, Linda A, 1997. "The Impact of Minimum Wages in Mexico and Colombia," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(3), pages S102-35, July.
  3. Alberto Abadie & David Drukker & Jane Leber Herr & Guido W. Imbens, 2004. "Implementing matching estimators for average treatment effects in Stata," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 4(3), pages 290-311, September.
  4. Andrew B. Bernard & Fredrik Sjoholm, 2003. "Foreign Owners and Plant Survival," NBER Working Papers 10039, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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