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Firm Location and the Creation and Utilization of Human Capital

  • Andres Almazan
  • Adolfo De Motta
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    This paper presents a theory of location choice that draws on insights from the incomplete contracts and investment flexibility (real option) literatures. We provide conditions under which human capital is more efficiently created and better utilized within industrial clusters that contain similar firms. Our analysis indicates that location choices are influenced by the extent to which training costs are borne by firms versus employees as well as by the uncertainty about future productivity shocks and the ability of firms to increase and decrease the scale of their operations. Extensions of our model allow us to consider, among other things, endogenous technological choices by firms in clusters and how behavioral biases (i.e., managerial overconfidence about their firms' prospects) can affect firms' location choices

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    Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings with number 68.

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    Date of creation: 11 Aug 2004
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:ecm:nawm04:68
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    1. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1994. "A Theory of Debt Based on the Inalienability of Human Capital," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(4), pages 841-879.
    2. Matouschek, Niko & Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2003. "The Role of Human Capital Investments in the Location Decisions of Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 3875, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Henderson, J. Vernon, 1986. "Efficiency of resource usage and city size," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 47-70, January.
    4. Helsley, Robert W. & Strange, William C., 1991. "Agglomeration economies and urban capital markets," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 96-112, January.
    5. Mortensen, Dale T & Pissarides, Christopher, 1999. "New Developments in Models of Search in the Labour Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 2053, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Rotemberg, Julio J. & Saloner, Garth, 2000. "Competition and human capital accumulation: a theory of interregional specialization and trade," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 373-404, July.
    7. James E. Rauch, 1993. "Does History Matter Only When It Matters Little? The Case of City-Industry Location," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 843-867.
    8. Ciccone, Antonio & Hall, Robert E, 1996. "Productivity and the Density of Economic Activity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 54-70, March.
    9. 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.
    10. Pierre-Philippe Combes & Gilles Duranton, 2001. "Labor Pooling, Labor Poaching and Spatial Clustering," CEP Discussion Papers dp0510, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    11. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver D, 1986. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 691-719, August.
    12. Edward L. Glaeser & Glenn Ellison, 1999. "The Geographic Concentration of Industry: Does Natural Advantage Explain Agglomeration?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 311-316, May.
    13. Helsley, Robert W. & Strange, William C., 1990. "Matching and agglomeration economies in a system of cities," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 189-212, September.
    14. Ellison, G. & Glaeser, E.L., 1994. "Geographic Concentration in U.S. Manufacturing Industries: A Dartboard Approach," Working papers 94-27, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    15. Thomas J. Holmes & John J. Stevens, 2002. "Geographic Concentration and Establishment Scale," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(4), pages 682-690, November.
    16. Guy Dumais & Glenn Ellison & Edward L. Glaeser, 2002. "Geographic Concentration As A Dynamic Process," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(2), pages 193-204, May.
    17. John McLaren, 2000. ""Globalization" and Vertical Structure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1239-1254, December.
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