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Coworker Networks in the Labour Market

  • Glitz, Albrecht

    ()

    (Humboldt University Berlin)

This paper studies the effect of coworker-based networks on individual labour market outcomes. I analyse how the provision of labour market relevant information by former coworkers affects the employment probabilities and, if hired, the wages of male workers who have previously become unemployed as the result of an establishment closure. To identify the causal effect of an individual worker's network on labour market outcomes, I exploit exogenous variation in the strength of these networks that is due to the occurrence of mass-layoffs in the establishments of former coworkers. The empirical analysis is based on administrative data that comprise the universe of workers employed in Germany between 1980 and 2001. The results suggest a strong positive effect of a higher employment rate in a worker's network of former coworkers on his re-employment probability after displacement: a 10 percentage point increase in the prevailing employment rate in the network increases the re-employment probability by 7.5 percentage points. In contrast, there is no evidence of a statistically significant effect on wages.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7392.

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Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: May 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7392
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  1. Patrick Bayer & Stephen L. Ross & Giorgio Topa, 2008. "Place of Work and Place of Residence: Informal Hiring Networks and Labor Market Outcomes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(6), pages 1150-1196, December.
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  8. Dahl, Gordon B. & Løken, Katrine V. & Mogstad, Magne, 2012. "Peer Effects In Program Participation," Working Papers in Economics 12/12, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
  9. Esther Duflo & Emmanuel Saez, 2003. "The Role of Information and Social Interactions in Retirement Plan Decisions: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(3), pages 815-842.
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  13. Anna Piil Damm, 2012. "Neighborhood Quality and Labor Market Outcomes: Evidence from Quasi-Random Neighborhood Assignment of Immigrants," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1235, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  14. Bandiera, Oriana & Barankay, Iwan & Rasul, Imran, 2008. "Social Connections and Incentives in the Workplace: Evidence from Personnel Data," IZA Discussion Papers 3917, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  15. George A. Akerlof, 1980. "A Theory of Social Custom, of which Unemployment may be One Consequence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 94(4), pages 749-775.
  16. Javier Suarez & Samuel Bentolila & Claudio Michelacci, 2004. "Social Contacts and Occupational Choice," 2004 Meeting Papers 593, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  17. Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Matthew O. Jackson, 2003. "Networks in Labor Markets: Wage and Employment Dynamics and Inequality," Working Papers 55, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  18. Lori A. Beaman, 2012. "Social Networks and the Dynamics of Labour Market Outcomes: Evidence from Refugees Resettled in the U.S," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(1), pages 128-161.
  19. Emmanuel Saez & Esther Duflo, 2003. "The role of information and social interactions in retirement plan decisions: Evidence from a randomized experiment," Framed Field Experiments 00141, The Field Experiments Website.
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