IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Stepping-stone Jobs: Theory and Evidence

Listed author(s):
  • Helen Connolly

    (Boston College)

  • Peter Gottschalk


    (Boston College)

This paper explores the wage and job dynamics of less-skilled workers by estimating a structural model in which agents choose among jobs that differ in initial wage and wage growth. The model also formalizes the intuitive notion that some of these jobs offer "stepping stones" to better jobs. The estimated model assumes that job offers consist of three attributes: an initial wage, an expected wage growth, and an indicator of the distribution from which future offers will come. We derive the conditions under which agents accept these offers and the effect of involuntary terminations on the acceptance decision. This model shows that the probability of leaving an employer depends both on the slope and intercept of the current and offered jobs and the probability of gaining access to the dominant wage offer distribution. We use the SIPP to estimate this model, which allows us to recover parameters of the wage offer distributions and the probability that a job is a stepping stone job. Our empirical work indicates that wage offer distributions vary systematically with the slope and intercept of wages in the current job and that there is a non-zero probability of being offered a stepping stone job.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
File Function: main text
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Boston College Department of Economics in its series Boston College Working Papers in Economics with number 427.

in new window

Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: 26 May 2000
Date of revision: 02 Apr 2001
Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:427
Note: This paper was previously circulated under the titles "Wage and Job Dynamics of Less Educated Workers" and "Dead-end and Stepping-stone Jobs: Theory and Evidence"
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Avenue, Chestnut Hill MA 02467 USA

Phone: 617-552-3670
Fax: +1-617-552-2308
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

in new window

  1. Robert H. Topel & Michael P. Ward, 1992. "Job Mobility and the Careers of Young Men," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 439-479.
  2. Joseph G. Altonji & Robert A. Shakotko, 1987. "Do Wages Rise with Job Seniority?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(3), pages 437-459.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:427. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Christopher F Baum)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.