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What is the objective of professional licensing? Evidence from the US market for lawyers

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  • Pagliero, Mario

Abstract

According to public interest theory, professional licensing solves the lemon problem generated by asymmetric information. In contrast, the capture theory claims that licensing aims at increasing professional salaries by restricting supply. This paper shows that the two theories can be identified using data from one regulated profession and provides an empirical application to the US market for entry level lawyers. The empirical results support capture theory.

Suggested Citation

  • Pagliero, Mario, 2011. "What is the objective of professional licensing? Evidence from the US market for lawyers," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 473-483, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:indorg:v:29:y:2011:i:4:p:473-483
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    10. Mario Pagliero, 2010. "Licensing Exam Difficulty and Entry Salaries in the US Market for Lawyers," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 48(4), pages 726-739, December.
    11. Morris M. Kleiner, 2006. "Licensing Occupations: Ensuring Quality or Restricting Competition?," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number lo, November.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Daiji Kawaguchi & Tetsushi Murao & Ryo Kambayashi, 2014. "Incidence of Strict Quality Standards: Protection of Consumers or Windfall for Professionals?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 57(1), pages 195-224.
    2. Frank H. Stephen, 2013. "Lawyers, Markets and Regulation," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 14803.
    3. Carmen Aina & Cheti Nicoletti, 2014. "The intergenerational transmission of liberal professions: nepotism versus abilities," Discussion Papers 14/14, Department of Economics, University of York.
    4. Alfred Wong & Lu Wei & Dean Tjosvold, 2014. "Business and regulators partnerships: Government transformational leadership for constructive conflict management," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 497-522, June.
    5. Catherine Schaumans & Frank Verboven, 2008. "Entry and regulation: evidence from health care professions," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 39(4), pages 949-972.
    6. Mario Pagliero & Edward Timmons, 2012. "Occupational Regulation in the European Legal Market," Working papers 27, Former Department of Economics and Public Finance "G. Prato", University of Torino.
    7. Aina, Carmen & Nicoletti, Cheti, 2014. "The intergenerational mobility of liberal professions: nepotism versus abilities," ISER Working Paper Series 2014-39, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    8. Camille Chaserant & Sophie Harnay, 2013. "The regulation of quality in the market for legal services: Taking the heterogeneity of legal services seriously," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 10(2), pages 267-291, August.
    9. repec:oup:jcomle:v:6:y:2010:i:2:p:203-231. is not listed on IDEAS
    10. J. Mark Ramseyer & Eric Rasmusen, 2013. "Lowering the Bar to Raise the Bar: Licensing Difficulty and Attorney Quality in Japan," Working Papers 2013-12, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
    11. Niels J. Philipsen, 2013. "Regulation of Pharmacists: A Comparative Law and Economics Analysis," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 10(2), pages 225-241, August.
    12. Marek Zapletal, 2017. "The Effects of Occupational Licensing Evidence from Detailed Business-Level Data," Working Papers 17-20, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    13. Mario Pagliero & Edward Timmons, 2013. "Occupational Regulation in the European Legal Market," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 10(2), pages 243-265, August.
    14. Mihaela Grecu, 2015. "Statistical-Based Insights in Spence’s Theory of Honest Signaling," Romanian Statistical Review, Romanian Statistical Review, vol. 63(3), pages 77-89, September.
    15. Pagliero, Mario, 2013. "The impact of potential labor supply on licensing exam difficulty," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 141-152.
    16. Michele Pellizzari & Giovanni Pica, 2010. "Liberalizing Professional Services: Evidence from Italian Lawyers," Working Papers 372, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    17. Niels Philipsen, 2011. "Professional Licensing and Self-regulation in Europe and China: A Law and Economics Perspective," Chapters,in: Competition Policy and Regulation, chapter 9 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    18. Daniel B. Klein & Benjamin Powell & Evgeny S. Vorotnikov, 2012. "Was Occupational Licensing Good for Minorities? A Critique of Marc Law and Mindy Marks," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 9(3), pages 210-233, September.

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