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Temporary hires and innovative investments

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  • Marco Malgarini
  • Massimo Mancini
  • Lia Pacelli

Abstract

The flexicurity approach claims a positive effect of flexible labour on firm performance, also through an increased ability to innovate. Critics consider it a deregulation of the labour market, decreasing investment in human capital and innovation. We contribute to this broad debate providing an estimate of the relationships linking innovative investment, substitution investment, permanent hires and temporary hires. In particular, we aim at affirming or denying that innovative investments are accompanied by a specific kind of workforce, being it stable or flexible. In doing so, we contribute to bridge the gap among two quite separate strands of literature, as existing literature usually analyses capital and labour separately. Estimating a nonlinear recursive equation system we highlight a significant increase in the likelihood of hiring on a permanent base when the firm innovates; this holds till 2008. Afterward, during the crisis, innovating firms are more likely to hire using temporary contracts instead, a possible signal of a cost saving strategy adopted in a loose labour market by firms still able to innovate. Furthermore, both permanent and temporary hires never depend on increases in labour costs; however, substitution investment increases when labour cost increases, maybe in an attempt to increase labour productivity through a more efficient capital equipment.

Suggested Citation

  • Marco Malgarini & Massimo Mancini & Lia Pacelli, 2013. "Temporary hires and innovative investments," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(17), pages 2361-2370, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:45:y:2013:i:17:p:2361-2370
    DOI: 10.1080/00036846.2012.663477
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Matteo Bugamelli & Fabiano Schivardi & Roberta Zizza, 2010. "The Euro and Firm Restructuring," NBER Chapters,in: Europe and the Euro, pages 99-138 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Ian Dew-Becker & Robert J. Gordon, 2008. "The Role of Labor Market Changes in the Slowdown of European Productivity Growth," NBER Working Papers 13840, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Victor Aguirregabiria & Cesar Alonso-Borrego, 2014. "Labor Contracts And Flexibility: Evidence From A Labor Market Reform In Spain," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 52(2), pages 930-957, April.
    4. Andrea Brandolini & Matteo Bugamelli & Guglielmo Barone & Antonio Bassanetti & Magda Bianco & Emanuele Breda & Emanuela Ciapanna & Federico Cingano & Francesco D'Amuri & Leandro D'Aurizio & Virginia D, 2009. "Report on trends in the Italian productive system," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 45, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    5. David Roodman, 2009. "Estimating Fully Observed Recursive Mixed-Process Models with cmp," Working Papers 168, Center for Global Development.
    6. Alessandra Del Boca & Paola Rota, 1998. "How Much Does Hiring and Firing Cost? Survey Evidence from a Sample of Italian Firms," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 12(3), pages 427-449, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Larisa Smirnykh, 2016. "Is Flexible Labor Good for Innovation? Evidence from Russian Firm-level Data," Foresight and STI Governance (Foresight-Russia till No. 3/2015), National Research University Higher School of Economics, vol. 10(4), pages 60-70.
    2. Addessi, William & Saltari, Enrico & Tilli, Riccardo, 2014. "R&D, innovation activity, and the use of external numerical flexibility," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 612-621.
    3. Valeria Cirillo & Marta Fana & Dario Guarascio, 2017. "Labour market reforms in Italy: evaluating the effects of the Jobs Act," Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, Springer;Fondazione Edison, vol. 34(2), pages 211-232, August.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts
    • J6 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers
    • D22 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis
    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity

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