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Recent Advances in the Empirics of Organizational Economics

Author

Listed:
  • Nicholas Bloom
  • Raffaella Sadun
  • John Van Reenen

    () (Department of Economics, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, Center for Economic Performance, and NBER
    Harvard University, Graduate School of Business, Boston, Massachusetts 02163, and Center for Economic Performance
    Center for Economic Performance, London School of Economics, London WC2A 2AE United Kingdom, NBER, and CEPR)

Abstract

We present a survey of recent contributions in empirical organizational economics, focusing on management practices and decentralization. Productivity dispersion between firms and countries has motivated the improved measurement of firm organization across industries and countries. There appears to be substantial variation in management practices and decentralization not only between countries, but also especially within countries. Much of the poorer average management quality in countries like Brazil and India seems to result from a long tail of poorly managed firms, which barely exist in the United States. Some stylized facts include the following: (a) Competition seems to foster improved management and decentralization; (b) larger firms, skill-intensive plants, and foreign multinationals appear better managed and are more decentralized; (c) firms that are both family owned and managed appear to have worse management and are more centralized; and (d) firms facing an environment of lighter labor market regulations and more human capital specialize relatively more in people management. There is evidence for complementarities between information and communication technology, decentralization, and management, but the relationship is complex, and identification of the productivity effects of organizational practices remains a challenge for future research.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicholas Bloom & Raffaella Sadun & John Van Reenen, 2010. "Recent Advances in the Empirics of Organizational Economics," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 2(1), pages 105-137, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:anr:reveco:v:2:y:2010:p:105-137
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    File URL: http://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev.economics.050708.143328
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    1. López, Alberto, 2012. "Productivity effects of ICTs and organizational change: A test of the complementarity hypothesis in Spain," MPRA Paper 40400, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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    5. Levina, Irina, 2016. "By connection or by competition? Decentralization of decision-making and hiring strategies at Russian firms," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 43, pages 73-95.
    6. Delmar, Frédéric & McKelvie, Alexander & Wennberg, Karl, 2013. "Untangling the relationships among growth, profitability and survival in new firms," Ratio Working Papers 205, The Ratio Institute.
    7. Damiani, Mirella & Ricci, Andrea, 2016. "Training, quality of management and firm level bargaining," MPRA Paper 72209, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Maloney, William F. & Sarrias, Mauricio, 2017. "Convergence to the managerial frontier," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 284-306.
    9. Viete, Steffen & Erdsiek, Daniel, 2015. "Mobile information and communication technologies, flexible work organization and labor productivity: Firm-level evidence," ZEW Discussion Papers 15-087, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    10. Spyros Arvanitis & Florian Seliger & Tobias Stucki, 2013. "The Relative Importance of Human Resource Management Practices for a Firm's Innovation Performance," KOF Working papers 13-341, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
    11. Castellani, Davide & Montresor, Sandro & Schubert, Torben & Vezzani, Antonio, 2017. "Multinationality, R&D and productivity: Evidence from the top R&D investors worldwide," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 405-416.
    12. Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc, 2014. "Trust, Well-Being and Growth: New Evidence and Policy Implications," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/33o86cn6qp8, Sciences Po.
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    14. Junichiro Ishida, 2012. "Promotion without Commitment: Signaling, Time Inconsistency and Decentralization of the Firm," ISER Discussion Paper 0843, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    15. Damiani, Mirella & Ricci, Andrea, 2016. "Training, quality of management and firm level bargaining," MPRA Paper 72138, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Beckmann, Michael, 2016. "Self-managed working time and firm performance: Microeconometric evidence," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145623, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
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    18. Bertschek, Irene & Niebel, Thomas & Ohnemus, Jörg & Rasel, Fabienne & Saam, Marianne & Schulte, Patrick & Schleife, Katrin & Stiehler, Andreas & Ortwein, Tobias & Heinzl, Armin & Nöhren, Marko, 2014. "Produktivität IT-basierter Dienstleistungen: Wie kann man sie messen und steuern?," ZEW Dokumentationen 14-02, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    19. Crass, Dirk & Peters, Bettina, 2014. "Intangible assets and firm-level productivity," ZEW Discussion Papers 14-120, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    20. Rocco Macchiavello & Ameet Morjaria, 2015. "Competition and Relational Contracts: Evidence from Rwanda's Coffee Mills," 2015 Meeting Papers 431, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    21. Beckmann, Michael, 2016. "Self-managed working time and firm performance: Microeconometric evidence," Working papers 2016/01, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
    22. Morikawa, Masayuki, 2015. "Are large headquarters unproductive?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 422-436.
    23. Cingano, Federico & Pinotti, Paolo, 2016. "Trust, firm organization, and the pattern of comparative advantage," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 1-13.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    productivity; organization; management; decentralization;

    JEL classification:

    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • G30 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - General
    • M10 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - General

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