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The Effects of Social Networks on Employment and Inequality

  • Matt Jackson

We develop a model where agents obtain information about job opportunities through an explicitly modeled network of social contacts. We show that employment is positively correlated across time and agents. Moreover, unemployment exhibits duration dependence: the probability of obtaining a job decreases in the length of time that an agent has been unemployed. Finally, we examine inequality between two groups. If staying in the labor market is costly and one group starts with a worse employment status, then that group's drop-out rate will be higher and their employment prospects will be persistently below that of the other group.

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Paper provided by UCLA Department of Economics in its series Theory workshop papers with number 658612000000000032.

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Date of creation: 25 Sep 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cla:uclatw:658612000000000032
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  1. David Card & Alan B. Krueger, 1991. "School Quality and Black-White Relative Earnings: A Direct Assessment," NBER Working Papers 3713, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Heckman, James J & Borjas, George J, 1980. "Does Unemployment Cause Future Unemployment? Definitions, Questions and Answers from a Continuous Time Model of Heterogeneity and State Dependence," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 47(187), pages 247-83, August.
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  10. Schelling, Thomas C, 1969. "Models of Segregation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(2), pages 488-93, May.
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  12. Steven N. Durlauf, 1992. "A Theory of Persistent Income Inequality," NBER Working Papers 4056, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Topa, Giorgio, 1997. "Social Interactions, Local Spillovers and Unemployment," Working Papers 97-17, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  14. Young, H Peyton, 1993. "The Evolution of Conventions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(1), pages 57-84, January.
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  16. Vishwanath, Tara, 1989. "Job Search, Stigma Effect, and Escape Rate from Unemployment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 7(4), pages 487-502, October.
  17. James J. Heckman & Christopher J. Flinn, 1982. "New Methods for Analyzing Structural Models of Labor Force Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 0856, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. George A. Akerlof, 1997. "Social Distance and Social Decisions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(5), pages 1005-1028, September.
  19. Farley, Reynolds, 1990. "Blacks, Hispanics, and White Ethnic Groups: Are Blacks Uniquely Disadvantaged?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 237-41, May.
  20. Lynch, Lisa M, 1989. "The Youth Labor Market in the Eighties: Determinants of Re-employment Probabilities for Young Men and Women," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(1), pages 37-45, February.
  21. Smith, James P & Welch, Finis R, 1989. "Black Economic Progress after Myrdal," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 27(2), pages 519-64, June.
  22. Stuart O. Schweitzer & Ralph E. Smith, 1974. "The persistence of the discouraged worker effect," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 27(2), pages 249-260, January.
  23. Scott A. Boorman, 1975. "A Combinatorial Optimization Model for Transmission of Job Information through Contact Networks," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 6(1), pages 216-249, Spring.
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