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Job vacancy chains in metropolitan labor markets


Author Info

  • Felsenstein, Daniel


  • Persky, Joseph


  • Carlson, Virginia



Metropolitan Labor markets are characterized by gross flows, much larger than the traditional net measures of employment change might suggest. Standard impact analyses of employment change tend to either ignore these flows or treat them as a matter of 'job churning'. But in a metropolitan area experiencing involuntary unemployment and underemployment, these flows may offer real opportunities for individuals to improve their employment positions. Such improvement occurs along 'job chains' in which a new vacancy opens a sequence of job changes allowing workers to move closer to their full employment wage. Not all chains are of the same length, nor does every chain produce the same welfare gain. This paper presents a model of job chaims which addresses chain length, welfare gains and distributional effects. The application of the model is illustrated using a hypothetical case of a new manufacturing firm in the Chicago metropolitan area. The job chains approach to estimating multiplier, efficiency and distributional effects associated with the firm, is compared with conventional impact analysis estimates. The conclusions discuss the implications of these estimates for the evaluation of local economic development projects.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by European Regional Science Association in its series ERSA conference papers with number ersa02p088.

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Date of creation: Aug 2002
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Handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwrsa:ersa02p088

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  1. Olivier Jean Blanchard & Peter Diamond, 1992. "The Flow Approach to Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 4000, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Charles Holt & Martin David, 1966. "The Concept of Job Vacancies in a Dynamic Theory of the Labor Market," NBER Chapters, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, in: The Measurement and Interpretation of Job Vacancies, pages 73-110 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Burgess, Simon M., 1994. "Matching models and labour market flows," European Economic Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 809-816, April.
  4. George A. Akerlof & Andrew K. Rose & Janet L. Yellen, 1988. "Job Switching and Job Satisfaction in the U.S. Labor Market," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(2), pages 495-594.
  5. B T Robson & M G Bradford & I A Deas, 1999. "Beyond the boundaries: vacancy chains and the evaluation of urban development corporations," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 31(4), pages 647-664, April.
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