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The impact of Urban Enterprise Zones on establishment location decisions and labor market outcomes: evidence from France


  • Thierry Mayer

    (Département d'économie)

  • Florian Mayneris

    (Institut de recherches économiques et sociales)

  • Loriane Py

    (Banque de France)


In this article, we study the impact of a French enterprise zone program—the ‘Zones Franches Urbaines’ (ZFUs) policy—on establishment location decisions and on labor market outcomes. Our main identification strategy, which combines spatial and time differencing, shows that conditional on locating in a municipality that hosts a ZFU, the policy has a positive and sizable impact on the probability to locate in the ZFU part rather than in the non-ZFU part of municipalities. However, the impact is highly heterogeneous across zones, industries and firms. We also show that this positive effect is entirely due to within-municipality diversion effects. Regarding labor market outcomes, the policy has a positive effect on employment, especially for low-wage workers. As for wages, the effect is null for low-wage workers, and negative for high-wage ones.

Suggested Citation

  • Thierry Mayer & Florian Mayneris & Loriane Py, 2017. "The impact of Urban Enterprise Zones on establishment location decisions and labor market outcomes: evidence from France," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/125h4fg7e89, Sciences Po.
  • Handle: RePEc:spo:wpmain:info:hdl:2441/125h4fg7e89gi95ui3ml6ggod9

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    Cited by:

    1. Florian Mayneris, 2017. "Effets des infrastructures de transport sur le niveau et la localisation des activités économiques," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2017023, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    2. Denis Anne & Julie Le Gallo & Yannick L'Horty, 2018. "Faciliter la mobilité quotidienne des jeunes éloignés de l’emploi : une évaluation expérimentale," TEPP Research Report 2018-02, TEPP.
    3. Cecile Gaubert, 2018. "Firm Sorting and Agglomeration," NBER Working Papers 24478, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item


    Firm location; Enterprise zones; Employment; Wages; Spatial differencing;

    JEL classification:

    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
    • R38 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Government Policy
    • R58 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Regional Development Planning and Policy

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