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The Impact of Urban Enterprise Zones on Establishments' Location Decisions: Evidence from French ZFUs

Author

Listed:
  • Thierry MAYER

    (Sciences-Po, CEPII, CEPR)

  • Florian MAYNERIS

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) and Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE))

  • Loriane PY

    (Banque de France)

Abstract

In this paper, we study the impact of a French enterprise zones program the "Zones Franches Urbaines" (ZFUs) policy on establishments' location decisions. Our empirical analysis is based on a micro-geographic dataset which provides exhaustive information on the location of establishments in France over the period 2000-2007 at the census block level. We use a difference in difference approach combining spatial and time differencing. We also do triple difference estimations, using the fact that targeted urban areas have been selected in different waves over time. Finally, we exploit a discontinuity in the eligibility criteria of the policy as an exogenous source of variation to estimate the impact of the treatment. Our results show that the French ZFU policy has a positive and sizable impact on location choices. However, we also find that the policy mostly generates displacement effects, in particular through relocation of firms from the un-treated to the treated part within municipalities. Finally, the impact is shown to be highly heterogeneous across zones, firms and industries. The overall cost of moving establishments within municipalities is relatively high.

Suggested Citation

  • Thierry MAYER & Florian MAYNERIS & Loriane PY, 2012. "The Impact of Urban Enterprise Zones on Establishments' Location Decisions: Evidence from French ZFUs," LIDAM Discussion Papers IRES 2012019, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  • Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvir:2012019
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    File URL: http://sites.uclouvain.be/econ/DP/IRES/2012019.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    firm location; enterprise zones; spatial differencing;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
    • R38 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Government Policy
    • R58 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Regional Development Planning and Policy

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