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Transitions in a West African Labour Market: The Role of Social Networks

Author

Listed:
  • Christophe Jalil Nordman

    (LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Université Paris-Dauphine)

  • Laure Pasquier-Doumer

    (LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Université Paris-Dauphine)

Abstract

This paper sheds light on the role of social networks in the dynamics of a West African labour market, i.e. in the transitions from unemployment to employment, from wage employment to self-employment, and from self-employment to wage employment. It investigates the effects of three dimensions of the social network on these transitions: its structure, the strength of ties and the resources embedded in the network. For this purpose, we use a first-hand survey conducted in Ouagadougou on a representative sample of 2000 households. Using event history data and very detailed information on social networks, we estimate proportional hazard models for discrete-time data. We find that social networks have a significant effect on the dynamics of workers in the labour market and that this effect differs depending on the type of transition and the considered dimension of the social network. The network size appears to not matter much in the labour market dynamics. Strong ties however play a stabilizing role by limiting large transitions. Their negative effect on transitions is reinforced when they are combined with high level of resources embedded in the network.

Suggested Citation

  • Christophe Jalil Nordman & Laure Pasquier-Doumer, 2017. "Transitions in a West African Labour Market: The Role of Social Networks," Working Papers hal-01620160, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-01620160
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01620160
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bocquier, Philippe & Nordman, Christophe J. & Vescovo, Aude, 2010. "Employment Vulnerability and Earnings in Urban West Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 1297-1314, September.
    2. Horton, Susan, 1988. "Birth Order and Child Nutritional Status: Evidence from the Philippines," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(2), pages 341-354, January.
    3. Mohamed Jellal & Christophe Nordman & Francois-Charles Wolff, 2008. "Evidence on the glass ceiling effect in France using matched worker-firm data," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(24), pages 3233-3250.
    4. Marcel Fafchamps, 2002. "Returns to social network capital among traders," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(2), pages 173-206, April.
    5. Lynne McCallister & Claude S. Fischer, 1978. "A Procedure for Surveying Personal Networks," Sociological Methods & Research, , vol. 7(2), pages 131-148, November.
    6. Jean-Philippe Berrou & François Combarnous, 2012. "The Personal Networks of Entrepreneurs in an Informal African Urban Economy: Does the ‘Strength of Ties’ Matter?," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 70(1), pages 1-30, July.
    7. repec:dau:papers:123456789/4294 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Hoang, Ha & Antoncic, Bostjan, 2003. "Network-based research in entrepreneurship: A critical review," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 165-187, March.
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    10. Parrado, Eric & Caner, Asena & Wolff, Edward N., 2007. "Occupational and industrial mobility in the United States," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 435-455, June.
    11. Abigail M. Barr, 2002. "The Functional Diversity and Spillover Effects of Social Capital," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 11(1), pages 90-113, March.
    12. Michael Grimm & Flore Gubert & Ousman Koriko & Jann Lay & Christophe Jalil Nordman, 2013. "Kinship ties and entrepreneurship in Western Africa," Post-Print hal-01521952, HAL.
    13. repec:dau:papers:123456789/13755 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Fernández, Rosa M. & Nordman, Christophe J., 2009. "Are there pecuniary compensations for working conditions?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 194-207, April.
    15. Laure Pasquier-Doumer, 2010. "Inequality of opportunity on the urban labour market in West Africa," Working Papers DT/2010/09, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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    Cited by:

    1. KUEPIE Mathias & TENIKUE Michel & WALTHER Olivier, 2014. "Small businesses performance in West African border regions: Do social networks pay off?," LISER Working Paper Series 2014-06, LISER.
    2. World Bank & Observatoire National de la Pauvreté et de l’Exclusion Sociale, 2014. "Investing in People to Fight Poverty in Haiti : Reflections for Evidence-based Policy Making
      [Haïti - Investir dans l’humain pour combattre la pauvreté : Éléments de réflexions pour la prise de déc
      ," World Bank Other Operational Studies 21519, The World Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Social Network; Kinship; Labour Market Dynamics; Event History Data; Survival Analysis; Burkina Faso;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation

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