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Labor Pooling as a Source of Agglomeration: An Empirical Investigation

In: Agglomeration Economics

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  • Henry G. Overman
  • Diego Puga

Abstract

We provide empirical evidence on the role of labour market pooling in determining the spatial concentration of UK manufacturing establishments. This role arises because large concentrations of employment iron out idiosyncratic shocks and improve establishments' ability to adapt their employment to good and bad times. We measure the likely importance of labour pooling by calculating the fluctuations in employment of individual establishments relative to their sector and averaging by sector. Our results show that sectors whose establishments experience more idiosyncratic volatility are more spatially concentrated, even after controlling for a range of other industry characteristics that include a novel measure of the importance of localized intermediate suppliers.

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This chapter was published in:

  • Edward L. Glaeser, 2010. "Agglomeration Economics," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number glae08-1, October.
    This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 7981.

    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberch:7981

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    1. Helsley, Robert W. & Strange, William C., 1990. "Matching and agglomeration economies in a system of cities," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 189-212, September.
    2. Giles Duranton & Diego Puga, 2003. "Micro-Foundations of Urban Agglomeration Economies," NBER Working Papers 9931, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    5. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Duranton, Gilles & Gobillon, Laurent, 2008. "Spatial wage disparities: Sorting matters!," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 723-742, March.
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    7. Duranton, Gilles & Henry G Overman, 2003. "Testing for Localisation Using Micro-Geographic Data," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003, Royal Economic Society 69, Royal Economic Society.
    8. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy, 1994. "The Division of Labor, Coordination Costs, and Knowledge," NBER Chapters, in: Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis with Special Reference to Education (3rd Edition), pages 299-322 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Thomas J. Holmes, 1999. "Localization Of Industry And Vertical Disintegration," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(2), pages 314-325, May.
    10. Glaeser, Edward L., 2008. "Cities, Agglomeration, and Spatial Equilibrium," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, number 9780199290444, October.
    11. Ellison, G. & Glaeser, E.L., 1994. "Geographic Concentration in U.S. Manufacturing Industries: A Dartboard Approach," Working papers, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics 94-27, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    12. Glaeser, Edward L & Mare, David C, 2001. "Cities and Skills," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(2), pages 316-42, April.
    13. Glenn Ellison & Drew Fudenberg, 2003. "Knife Edge of Plateau: When Do Market Models Tip?," NBER Working Papers 9528, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Dora L. Costa & Matthew E. Kahn, 1999. "Power Couples: Changes in the Locational Choice of the College Educated, 1940-1990," NBER Working Papers 7109, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    16. Wheaton, William C. & Lewis, Mark J., 2002. "Urban Wages and Labor Market Agglomeration," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 542-562, May.
    17. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2004. "Evidence on the nature and sources of agglomeration economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, Elsevier, in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 49, pages 2119-2171 Elsevier.
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