The Use of Informal Networks in Italian Labor Markets: Efficiency or Favoritisms?
AbstractA number of papers considers the use of informal networks (the help of relatives, friends and acquaintances) to find an employment as an efficient mechanism to match workers to jobs. However, evidence in Italy shows that informal networks tend to be used more in less productive jobs and less developed regions. We aim to show that informal networks – rather than being an efficient channel of information transmission – may interfere with a genuine process of selection of workers, favoring socially connected people in place of more talented workers. Using the Bank of Italy Survey on Household Income and Wealth (SHIW) we estimate with a Probit model the determinants of the probability of using informal networks. We find that informal networks tend to be used by low educated individuals, in low productivity jobs, in high unemployment areas, where opportunistic behavior are widespread and in jobs paying a wage rent. We offer a stripped-down model of nepotism to explain theoretically these findings.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 11764.
Date of creation: 15 Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Keywords: Informal Networks; Favoritism; Nepotism; Italian Labour Markets;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
- J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
- J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
- M51 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting - - Personnel Economics - - - Firm Employment Decisions; Promotions
- J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2008-12-01 (All new papers)
- NEP-HRM-2008-12-01 (Human Capital & Human Resource Management)
- NEP-LAB-2008-12-01 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-NET-2008-12-01 (Network Economics)
- NEP-SOC-2008-12-01 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Mike Burkart & Fausto Panunzi & Andrei Shleifer, 2002.
Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers
1944, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Mike Burkart & Fausto Panunzi & Andrei Shleifer, 2002. "Family Firms," NBER Working Papers 8776, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Andrei Shleifer & Fausto Panunzi & Mike Burkart, 2002. "Family firms," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 24926, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
- Andrei Shleifer & Fausto Panunzi & Mike Burkart, 2002. "Family Firms," FMG Discussion Papers dp406, Financial Markets Group.
- Burkart, Mike & Panunzi, Fausto & Shleifer, Andrei, 2002. "Family Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 3234, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Montgomery, James D, 1991. "Social Networks and Labor-Market Outcomes: Toward an Economic Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1407-18, December.
- David G. Blanchflower & Alex Bryson, 2003. "What Effect do Unions Have on Wages Now and Would 'What Do Unions Do' Be Surprised?," NBER Working Papers 9973, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- John T. Addison & Pedro Portugal, 1998.
"Job Search Methods and Outcomes,"
w199808, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
- Addison, John T. & Portugal, Pedro, 2001. "Job Search Methods and Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 349, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Addison, John T. & Portugal, Pedro, 1998. "Job Search Methods and Outcomes," ZEW Discussion Papers 98-41, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
- Kugler, Adriana, 2002.
"Employee Referrals and Efficiency Wages,"
IZA Discussion Papers
633, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Samuel Bentolila & Claudio Michelacci & Javier Suarez, 2004.
"Social Contacts And Occupational Choice,"
- Javier Suarez & Samuel Bentolila & Claudio Michelacci, 2004. "Social Contacts and Occupational Choice," 2004 Meeting Papers 593, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Bentolila, Samuel & Michelacci, Claudio & Suarez, Javier, 2004. "Social Contacts and Occupational Choice," CEPR Discussion Papers 4308, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Laband, David N & Lentz, Bernard F, 1992. "Self-Recruitment in the Legal Profession," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(2), pages 182-201, April.
- Samuel Bentolila & Andrea Ichino, 2008. "Unemployment and consumption near and far away from the Mediterranean," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 255-280, April.
- Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 1999. "Social relations and cooperation in organizations," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 1-25, January.
- Card, David, 1996. "The Effect of Unions on the Structure of Wages: A Longitudinal Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 957-79, July.
- Simon, Curtis J & Warner, John T, 1992. "Matchmaker, Matchmaker: The Effect of Old Boy Networks on Job Match Quality, Earnings, and Tenure," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(3), pages 306-30, July.
- De Paola, Maria & Scoppa, Vincenzo, 2005. "The Role of Family Ties in the Labour Market. An Interpretation Based on Efficiency Wage Theory," MPRA Paper 8956, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Saloner, Garth, 1985. "Old Boy Networks as Screening Mechanisms," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(3), pages 255-67, July.
- Alesina, Alberto & Giuliano, Paola, 2007.
"The Power of the Family,"
IZA Discussion Papers
2750, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Francesco Caselli & Nicola Gennaioli, 2005. "Credit Constraints, Competition, and Meritocracy," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 679-689, 04/05.
- Datcher, Linda, 1983. "The Impact of Informal Networks of Quit Behavior," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(3), pages 491-95, August.
- Marianne Bertrand & Antoinette Schoar, 2006. "The Role of Family in Family Firms," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(2), pages 73-96, Spring.
- Becker, Gary S., 1971. "The Economics of Discrimination," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 1, number 9780226041162, June.
- Harry J. Holzer, 1988. "The Determinants of Employee Productivity and Earnings: Some New Evidence," NBER Working Papers 2782, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Michela Ponzo & Vincenzo Scoppa, 2010. "A Simple Model Of Nepotism," Working Papers 201017, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica).
- Bernard F. Lentz & David N. Laband, 1989. "Why So Many Children of Doctors Become Doctors: Nepotism vs. Human Capital Transfers," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 24(3), pages 396-413.
- Gregory, Robert G. & Borland, Jeff, 1999. "Recent developments in public sector labor markets," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 53, pages 3573-3630 Elsevier.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.