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Are workers with a long commute less productive? An empirical analysis of absenteeism

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  • van Ommeren, Jos N.
  • Gutiérrez-i-Puigarnau, Eva

Abstract

We hypothesise, and test for, a negative effect of the length of the worker's commute on worker's productivity, by examining whether the commute has a positive effect on worker's absenteeism. We identify this effect using employer-induced changes in commuting distance. Our estimates for Germany indicate that commuting distance induces absenteeism with an elasticity of about 0.07 to 0.09. On average, absenteeism would be about 15 to 20% less if all workers would have a negligible commute. These results are consistent with extended urban efficiency wage models.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Regional Science and Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 41 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 1-8

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Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:41:y:2011:i:1:p:1-8

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Keywords: Absenteeism Commuting Productivity;

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References

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  1. Jan K. Brueckner & Yves Zenou, 2003. "Space and Unemployment: The Labor-Market Effects of Spatial Mismatch," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 242-262, January.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Fu, Shihe & Viard, Brian, 2014. "Commute Costs and Labor Supply: Evidence from a Satellite Campus," MPRA Paper 53740, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Naci Mocan & Duha T. Altindag, 2013. "Salaries and Work Effort: An Analysis of the European Union Parliamentarians," Auburn Economics Working Paper Series auwp2013-02, Department of Economics, Auburn University.
  3. Rosa Sanchis-Guarner, 2012. "Driving Up Wages: The Effects of Road Construction in Great Britain," SERC Discussion Papers 0120, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
  4. Eva Gutiérrez-i-Puigarnau & Jos van Ommeren, 2009. "Labour Supply and Commuting," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 222, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  5. Falch, Torberg & Lujala, Päivi & Strøm, Bjarne, 2013. "Geographical constraints and educational attainment," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 164-176.
  6. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2013. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses in an urban CGE study: The case of German cities," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 11-27.
  7. Gershenson, Seth, 2013. "The causal effect of commute time on labor supply: Evidence from a natural experiment involving substitute teachers," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 127-140.

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