IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Estimating Agglomeration Economies with History, Geology and Worker Effects

  • Pierre-Philippe Combes


  • Gilles Duranton


  • Laurent Gobillon


  • Sébastien Roux


Does productivity increase with density? We revisit the issue using French wage and TFP data.To deal with the ‘endogenous quantity of labour’ bias (i.e., urban agglomeration is consequenceof high local productivity rather than a cause), we take an instrumental variable approach andintroduce a new set of geological instruments in addition to standard historical instruments. Todeal with the ‘endogenous quality of labour’ bias (i.e., cities attract skilled workers so that theeffects of skills and urban agglomeration are confounded), we take a worker fixed-effectapproach with wage data. We find modest evidence about the endogenous quantity of labour biasand both sets of instruments give a similar answer. We find that the endogenous quality of labourbias is quantitatively more important.

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: Crest working paper version
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique in its series Working Papers with number 2008-22.

in new window

Length: 45
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:crs:wpaper:2008-22
Contact details of provider: Postal: 15 Boulevard Gabriel Peri 92245 Malakoff Cedex
Phone: 01 41 17 60 81
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.:

as in new window
  1. Glaeser, Edward L & Mare, David C, 2001. "Cities and Skills," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(2), pages 316-42, April.
  2. Judith K. Hellerstein & David Neumark & Kenneth R. Troske, 1996. "Wages, Productivity, and Worker Characteristics: Evidence from Plant-Level Production Functions and Wage Equations," NBER Working Papers 5626, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2003. "The Empirics of Agglomeration and Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 3985, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Redding, Stephen J. & Sturm, Daniel M, 2005. "The Costs of Remoteness: Evidence from German Division and Reunification," CEPR Discussion Papers 5015, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Pierre-Philippe COMBES & Gilles DURANTON & Laurent GOBILLON & Diego PUGA & Sébastien ROUX, 2009. "The Productivity Advantages of Large Cities : Distinguishing Agglomeration from Firm Selection," Working Papers 2009-08, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  6. Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2006. "Regional wage and employment responses to market potential in the EU," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(5), pages 573-594, September.
  7. Ackerberg, Daniel & Caves, Kevin & Frazer, Garth, 2006. "Structural identification of production functions," MPRA Paper 38349, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Pierre-Philippe Combes & Gilles Duranton & Laurent Gobillon, 2008. "Spatial Wage Disparities: Sorting Matters!," Post-Print halshs-00754296, HAL.
  9. Ciccone, Antonio, 2002. "Agglomeration effects in Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 213-227, February.
  10. Jordan Rappaport, 2004. "Moving to Nice Weather," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 188, Econometric Society.
  11. Patrick Bayer & Stephen L. Ross, 2004. "Place of Work and Place of Residence: Informal Hiring Networks and Labor Market Outcomes," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 495, Econometric Society.
  12. Antonio Ciccone & Robert E. Hall, 1995. "Productivity and the density of economic activity," Economics Working Papers 120, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  13. Chad Syverson, 2001. "Market Structure and Productivity: A Concrete Example," Working Papers 01-06, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  14. David E. Weinstein & Donald R. Davis, 2004. "Search for Multiple Equilibria in Urban Industrial Structure," Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings 639, Econometric Society.
  15. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/10191 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Jonathan Eaton & Zvi Eckstein, 1994. "Cities and Growth: Theory and Evidence from france and Japan," Boston University - Institute for Economic Development 36, Boston University, Institute for Economic Development.
  17. Gordon B. Dahl, 2002. "Mobility and the Return to Education: Testing a Roy Model with Multiple Markets," RCER Working Papers 488, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  18. Evans, William N & Oates, Wallace E & Schwab, Robert M, 1992. "Measuring Peer Group Effects: A Study of Teenage Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(5), pages 966-91, October.
  19. James H. Stock & Motohiro Yogo, 2002. "Testing for Weak Instruments in Linear IV Regression," NBER Technical Working Papers 0284, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Fox, Jeremy T. & Smeets, Valérie, 2007. "Do Input Quality and Structural Productivity Estimates Drive Measured Differences in Firm Productivity?," Working Papers 07-2, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
  21. Patrick Bayer & Stephen L. Ross & Giorgio Topa, 2005. "Place of Work and Place of Residence: Informal Hiring Networks and Labor Market Outcomes," Working Papers 927, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  22. Duranton, Gilles & Puga, Diego, 2004. "Micro-foundations of urban agglomeration economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 48, pages 2063-2117 Elsevier.
  23. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2004. "Evidence on the nature and sources of agglomeration economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 49, pages 2119-2171 Elsevier.
  24. Gilles Duranton, 2007. "Urban Evolutions: The Fast, the Slow, and the Still," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 197-221, March.
  25. Henderson, J. Vernon, 2003. "Marshall's scale economies," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 1-28, January.
  26. Moretti, Enrico, 2004. "Estimating the social return to higher education: evidence from longitudinal and repeated cross-sectional data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 121(1-2), pages 175-212.
  27. Olley, G Steven & Pakes, Ariel, 1996. "The Dynamics of Productivity in the Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1263-97, November.
  28. Patrick Aubert & Bruno Crépon, 2003. "La productivité des salariés âgés : une tentative d'estimation," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 368(1), pages 95-119.
  29. Roback, Jennifer, 1982. "Wages, Rents, and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1257-78, December.
  30. Xavier Boutin & Simon Quantin, 2008. "Une méthodologie d'évaluation comptable du coût du capital des entreprises françaises (1984-2002)," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 413(1), pages 47-64.
  31. Moulton, Brent R, 1990. "An Illustration of a Pitfall in Estimating the Effects of Aggregate Variables on Micro Unit," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(2), pages 334-38, May.
  32. Bacolod, Marigee & Blum, Bernardo S. & Strange, William C., 2009. "Skills in the city," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 136-153, March.
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:crs:wpaper:2008-22. 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: (Florian Sallaberry)

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.