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Urbanization Externalities, Market Potential and Spatial Sorting of Skills and Firms

  • Mion, Giordano
  • Naticchioni, Paolo

Using a matched employer-employee dataset on Italy we look at the spatial distribution of wages among provinces. We find evidence of both urbanization and market potential externalities, with the second one being more relevant. However, spatial sorting of skills is at work and explains a great deal of spatial wage variability. We further show that this sorting is only partially due to migrations and it dampens estimates of spatial externalities. The evidence concerning the sorting of firms is instead quite weak. In the paper, we also find support of self-selection of migrants based on skills and a moderate evidence of the wage growth hypothesis. Finally, we show that the well-established correlation between the employer size and workers' skills is not simply the outcome of a co-location phenomenon.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 5172.

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Date of creation: Aug 2005
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5172
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  1. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2005. "Regional Wage and Employment Responses to Market Potential in the EU," Bruges European Economic Research Papers 3, European Economic Studies Department, College of Europe.
  2. Fujita, Masahisa & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 1996. "Economics of Agglomeration," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 339-378, December.
  3. Edward L. Glaeser & David C. Mare, 1994. "Cities and Skills," NBER Working Papers 4728, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. John M. Abowd & Francis Kramarz & David N. Margolis, 1994. "High Wage Workers and High Wage Firms," NBER Working Papers 4917, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Redding, Stephen J. & Schott, Peter K., 2003. "Distance, Skill Deepening and Development: Will Peripheral Countries Ever Get Rich?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3739, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Duranton, Gilles & Gobillon, Laurent, 2008. "Spatial wage disparities: Sorting matters!," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 723-742, March.
  7. Jeffrey R. Campbell & Hugo Hopenhayn, 2003. "Market size matters," Working Paper Series WP-03-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  8. Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2002. "Market Potential and the Location of Japanese Investment in the European Union," CEPR Discussion Papers 3455, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Glaeser, Edward L & Hedi D. Kallal & Jose A. Scheinkman & Andrei Shleifer, 1992. "Growth in Cities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(6), pages 1126-52, December.
    • Edward L. Glaeser & Hedi D. Kallal & Jose A. Scheinkman & Andrei Shleifer, 1991. "Growth in Cities," NBER Working Papers 3787, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • Glaeser, Edward Ludwig & Kallal, Hedi D. & Scheinkman, Jose A. & Shleifer, Andrei, 1992. "Growth in Cities," Scholarly Articles 3451309, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  10. Sabrina Di Addario & Eleonora Patacchini, 2006. "Is there an urban wage premium in Italy?," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 570, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  11. Anne-Célia Disdier & Keith Head, 2008. "The Puzzling Persistence of the Distance Effect on Bilateral Trade," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(1), pages 37-48, February.
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