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Trust-Based Work-Time and Product Improvements: Evidence from Firm Level Data

Listed author(s):
  • Godart, Olivier

    ()

    (Kiel Institute for the World Economy)

  • Görg, Holger

    ()

    (Kiel Institute for the World Economy)

  • Hanley, Aoife

    ()

    (Kiel Institute for the World Economy)

We explore whether the introduction of trust based working hours is related to the subsequent innovation performance of firms. Employing a panel data set of over 5,000 German establishments, we implement a propensity score matching approach where we only consider firms that did not use trust based work contracts initially. Our results show that firms which adopt such contracts tend to be between 11 to 14 percent more likely to improve products. These results hold when we control for another form of flexible time work arrangements, namely working time accounts. Thus, the positive relationship between the adoption of trust based working hours and innovation seems to be driven by the degree of control and self-management over working days, rather than by merely allowing time flexibility.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp8097.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 8097.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2014
Publication status: published in: Industrial & Labor Relations Review, 2017, 70(4), 894-918
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8097
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  1. Philippe Aghion & Nick Bloom & Richard Blundell & Rachel Griffith & Peter Howitt, 2005. "Competition and Innovation: an Inverted-U Relationship," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(2), pages 701-728.
  2. Haibo Zhou & Ronald Dekker & Alfred Kleinknecht, 2011. "Flexible labor and innovation performance: evidence from longitudinal firm-level data," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 20(3), pages 941-968, June.
  3. Holger Görg & Michael Henry & Eric Strobl, 2008. "Grant Support and Exporting Activity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(1), pages 168-174, February.
  4. James J. Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Petra E. Todd, 1997. "Matching As An Econometric Evaluation Estimator: Evidence from Evaluating a Job Training Programme," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 64(4), pages 605-654.
  5. Timothy F. Bresnahan & Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin M. Hitt, 2002. "Information Technology, Workplace Organization, and the Demand for Skilled Labor: Firm-Level Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(1), pages 339-376.
  6. Dennis J. Snower & Alessio J. G. Brown & Christian Merkl, 2009. "Globalization and the Welfare State: A Review of Hans-Werner Sinn's Can Germany Be Saved?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(1), pages 136-158, March.
  7. Spyros Arvanitis, 2005. "Modes of labor flexibility at firm level: Are there any implications for performance and innovation? Evidence for the Swiss economy," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(6), pages 993-1016, December.
  8. Nick Bloom & Tobias Kretschmer & John Van Reenen, 2011. "Are family-friendly workplace practices a valuable firm resource?," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(4), pages 343-367, April.
  9. Beauregard, T. Alexandra & Henry, Lesley C., 2009. "Making the link between work-life balance practices and organizational performance," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 25224, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  10. Wouter Dessein & Tano Santos, 2006. "Adaptive Organizations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(5), pages 956-985, October.
  11. Matthias Arnold, Jens & Javorcik, Beata S., 2009. "Gifted kids or pushy parents? Foreign direct investment and plant productivity in Indonesia," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 42-53, September.
  12. Bloom, Nicholas & Van Reenen, John, 2011. "Human Resource Management and Productivity," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier.
  13. Guido W. Imbens, 2004. "Nonparametric Estimation of Average Treatment Effects Under Exogeneity: A Review," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 4-29, February.
  14. Nicholas Bloom & Raffaella Sadun, 2012. "The Organization of Firms Across Countries," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(4), pages 1663-1705.
  15. Michael Beckmann & Istvàn Hegedüs, 2011. "Trust-Based Working Time and Organizational Performance: Evidence from German Establishment-Level Panel Data," Working papers 2011/13, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
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