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Job Assignments under Moral Hazard: The Peter Principle Revisited

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  • Koch, Alexander K.

    () (Aarhus University)

  • Nafziger, Julia

    () (Aarhus University)

Abstract

The Peter Principle captures two stylized facts about hierarchies: first, promotions often place employees into jobs for which they are less well suited than for that previously held. Second, demotions are extremely rare. Why do organizations not correct ‘wrong’ promotion decision? This paper shows in a complete contracting setting that a simple trade-off between incentive provision and efficient job assignment may make it optimal to promote some employees to a job at which they produce less than they would at the previous level.

Suggested Citation

  • Koch, Alexander K. & Nafziger, Julia, 2007. "Job Assignments under Moral Hazard: The Peter Principle Revisited," IZA Discussion Papers 2973, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2973
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Anja Schöttner & Veikko Thiele, 2010. "Promotion Tournaments and Individual Performance Pay," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(3), pages 699-731, September.
    2. David Dickinson & Marie Claire Villeval, 2007. "The Peter Principle: An Experiment," Post-Print halshs-00201225, HAL.
    3. Michael Mueller, 2016. "Does Sporting Activity Foster Career Advancement?," Eastern European Business and Economics Journal, Eastern European Business and Economics Studies Centre, vol. 2(4), pages 285-298.
    4. Julia Nafziger, 2008. "Job Assignments, Intrinsic Motivation and Explicit Incentives," Bonn Econ Discussion Papers bgse5_2008, University of Bonn, Germany.
    5. Müller, Michael, 2016. "Fördert sportliche Aktivität den beruflichen Aufstieg?," Discussion Papers of the Institute for Organisational Economics 02/2016, University of Münster, Institute for Organisational Economics.
    6. Brahmana, Rayenda Khresna & Setiawan, Doddy & Hooy, Chee Wooi, 2014. "Diversification strategy, Ownership Structure, and Firm Value: a study of public‐listed firms in Indonesia," MPRA Paper 64607, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Pawel Sobkowicz, 2010. "Dilbert-Peter Model of Organization Effectiveness: Computer Simulations," Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, vol. 13(4), pages 1-4.
    8. Brilon, Stefanie, 2015. "Job assignment with multivariate skills and the Peter Principle," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 112-121.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    moral hazard; Peter Principle; job assignments; information;

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
    • M12 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Personnel Management; Executives; Executive Compensation

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