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On the Determinants of Organizational Forgetting

  • Guy David
  • Tanguy Brachet

Studies of organizational learning and forgetting identify potential channels through which the firm's production experience is lost. These channels have differing implications for efficient resource allocation within the firm, but their relative importance has been ignored to date. We develop a framework for distinguishing the contributions of labor turnover and human capital depreciation to organizational forgetting. We apply our framework to a novel dataset of ambulance companies and their workforce. We find evidence of organizational forgetting, which results from skill decay and turnover effects. The latter has twice the magnitude of the former. (JEL D23, D83, J24, J63)

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/mic.3.3.100
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Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Journal: Microeconomics.

Volume (Year): 3 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
Pages: 100-123

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aejmic:v:3:y:2011:i:3:p:100-123
Note: DOI: 10.1257/mic.3.3.100
Contact details of provider: Web page: https://www.aeaweb.org/aej-micro
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  1. Charles D. Bailey, 1989. "Forgetting and the Learning Curve: A Laboratory Study," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 35(3), pages 340-352, March.
  2. Peter Thompson, 2001. "How Much Did the Liberty Shipbuilders Learn? New Evidence for an Old Case Study," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(1), pages 103-137, February.
  3. C. Lanier Benkard, 2000. "Learning and Forgetting: The Dynamics of Aircraft Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 1034-1054, September.
  4. David, Guy & Chiang, Arthur J., 2009. "The determinants of public versus private provision of Emergency Medical Services," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 312-319, March.
  5. Verbeek, M. & Nijman, T., 1990. "Testing For Selectivity Bias In Panel Data Models," Papers 9018, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  6. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-153280 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Rebecca Achee Thornton & Peter Thompson, 2001. "Learning from Experience and Learning from Others: An Exploration of Learning and Spillovers in Wartime Shipbuilding," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1350-1368, December.
  8. Robert S. Huckman & Gary P. Pisano, 2006. "The Firm Specificity of Individual Performance: Evidence from Cardiac Surgery," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(4), pages 473-488, April.
  9. Peter Thompson, 2007. "How Much Did the Liberty Shipbuilders Forget?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 53(6), pages 908-918, June.
  10. Nijman, T.E. & Verbeek, M.J.C.M., 1992. "Testing for selectivity in panel data models," Other publications TiSEM 7ec34a6c-1d84-4052-971c-d, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  11. Rigobon, Roberto & Stoker, Thomas M., 2009. "Bias From Censored Regressors," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 27(3), pages 340-353.
  12. Peter Thompson, 2003. "How Much Did The Liberty Shipbuilders Forget?," Working Papers 0301, Florida International University, Department of Economics.
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