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Coworker Networks in the Labour Market

  • Albrecht Glitz

This paper studies the role coworker-based networks play for individual labour market outcomes. I analyse how the provision of labour market relevant information by former coworkers affects the employment probabilities and, if hired, the wages of male workers who have previously become unemployed as the result of an establishment closure. To identify the causal effect of an individual worker's network on labour market outcomes, I exploit exogenous variation in the strength of these networks that is due to the occurrence of mass-layoffs in the establishments of former coworkers. The empirical analysis is based on administrative data that comprise the universe of workers employed in Germany between 1980 and 2001. The results suggest a strong positive effect of a higher employment rate in a worker's network of former coworkers on his re-employment probability after displacement: a 10 percentage point increase in the prevailing employment rate in the network increases the re-employment probability by 7.5 percentage points. In contrast, there is no evidence of a statistically significant effect on wages.

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Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 731.

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Date of creation: May 2013
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:731
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  8. Åslund, Olof & Edin, Per-Anders & Fredriksson, Peter, 2001. "Ethnic Enclaves and the Economic Success of Immigrants - Evidence from a Natural Experiment," CEPR Discussion Papers 2729, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  11. Christian Dustmann & Albrecht Glitz & Uta Schoenberg, 2011. "Referral-based Job Search Networks," Norface Discussion Paper Series 2011012, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London.
  12. Giacomo De Giorgi & Michele Pellizzari & Silvia Redaelli, 2010. "Identification of Social Interactions through Partially Overlapping Peer Groups," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 241-75, April.
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  16. Gordon B. Dahl & Katrine Vellesen Loken & Magne Mogstad, 2013. "Peer Effects in Program Participation," CESifo Working Paper Series 4349, CESifo Group Munich.
  17. George A. Akerlof, 1978. "A theory of social custom, of which unemployment may be one consequence," Special Studies Papers 118, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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  19. Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Matthew O. Jackson, 2003. "Networks in Labor Markets: Wage and Employment Dynamics and Inequality," Working Papers 55, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  20. Lori A. Beaman, 2012. "Social Networks and the Dynamics of Labour Market Outcomes: Evidence from Refugees Resettled in the U.S," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(1), pages 128-161.
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