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Cities and Skills

  • Glaeser, Edward L
  • Mare, David C

Workers in cities earn 33% more than their nonurban counterparts. A large amount of evidence suggests that this premium is not just the result of higher ability workers living in cities, which means that cities make workers more productive. Evidence on migrants and the cross effect between urban status and experience implies that a significant fraction of the urban wage premium accrues to workers over time and stays with them when they leave cities. Therefore, a portion of the urban wage premium is a wage growth, not a wage level, effect. This evidence suggests that cities speed the accumulation of human capital. Copyright 2001 by University of Chicago Press.

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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Labor Economics.

Volume (Year): 19 (2001)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 316-42

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:v:19:y:2001:i:2:p:316-42
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JOLE/

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  1. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  2. Gary S. Murphy Becker & Kevin M., 1992. "The Division of Labor, Coordination Costs, and Knowledge," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 79, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  3. James E. Rauch, 1991. "Productivity Gains From Geographic Concentration of human Capital: Evidence From the Cities," NBER Working Papers 3905, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Raul Livas Elizondo & Paul Krugman, 1992. "Trade Policy and the Third World Metropolis," NBER Working Papers 4238, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Antonio Ciccone & Robert E. Hall, 1993. "Productivity and the Density of Economic Activity," NBER Working Papers 4313, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Krugman, Paul, 1991. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 483-99, June.
  7. Robert H. Topel, 1990. "Specific Capital, Mobility, and Wages: Wages Rise with Job Seniority," NBER Working Papers 3294, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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