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Re-defining Informal Employment and Measuring its Determinants: Evidence from Russia

Author

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  • Lehmann, Hartmut

    () (University of Bologna)

  • Zaiceva, Anzelika

    () (University of Modena and Reggio Emilia)

Abstract

Informal activities impact countries' economic development and overall growth. However, studying informal employment is not easy and it is crucial to provide a valid definition of it. This paper contributes to the recent discussion of the measures of informality by taking advantage of a rich dataset on Russia over the period 2003 - 2011, that is before and after the economic downturn, together with a special supplement on informality that allows to construct different measures of informal employment and to analyze its determinants. We demonstrate that the incidence of informal employment varies across the different definitions. However, the determinants of informal employment are roughly stable across the different measures as long as we exclude firm size as a criterion. We also show that risk-averse individuals, as expected, are less likely to select themselves into informal employment.

Suggested Citation

  • Lehmann, Hartmut & Zaiceva, Anzelika, 2013. "Re-defining Informal Employment and Measuring its Determinants: Evidence from Russia," IZA Discussion Papers 7844, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7844
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Maloney, William F., 2004. "Informality Revisited," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1159-1178, July.
    2. Lehmann, Hartmut & Pignatti, Norberto, 2007. "Informal Employment Relationships and Labor Market Segmentation in Transition Economies: Evidence from Ukraine," IZA Discussion Papers 3269, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Karabchuk, Tatiana, 2012. "Informal employment in Russia: Why is it so sustainable?," economic sociology_the european electronic newsletter, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, vol. 13(2), pages 29-36.
    4. Thomas Dohmen & Melanie Khamis & Hartmut Lehmann, 2010. "Risk Attitudes and the Incidence of Informality among Workers: Evidence from a Transition Country," ESCIRRU Working Papers 22, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    5. Lehmann, Hartmut & Muravyev, Alexander & Razzolini, Tiziano & Zaiceva, Anzelika, 2013. "The wage and non-wage costs of displacement in boom times: Evidence from Russia," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(4), pages 1184-1201.
    6. H. Lehmann & A. Muravyev, 2012. "Labor Market Institutions and Informality in Transition and Latin American Countries," Working Papers wp854, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    7. repec:eme:rlecpp:rlec.2012.34 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Harris, John R & Todaro, Michael P, 1970. "Migration, Unemployment & Development: A Two-Sector Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(1), pages 126-142, March.
    9. Sabine Bernab? & Marco Stampini, 2008. "Labour mobility during transition: evidence from Georgia," LICOS Discussion Papers 20608, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    10. Slonimczyk, Fabian, 2011. "The effect of taxation on informal employment: evidence from the Russian flat tax reform," MPRA Paper 35404, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. V. Gimpelson & A. Zudina., 2011. "Informal Workers in the Russian Economy: Who Are They and How Many?," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 10.
    12. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Anna Lukiyanova, 2015. "Earnings inequality and informal employment in Russia," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 23(2), pages 469-516, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    incidence; definitions; informal employment; determinants; Russia;

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J40 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - General
    • P23 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - Factor and Product Markets; Industry Studies; Population

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