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Labor Market Frictions and Production Efficiency in Public Schools

Author

Listed:
  • Dongwoo Kim

    () (Department of Economics, at the University of Missouri, Columbia)

  • Cory Koedel

    () (Department of Economics and Truman School of Public Affairs, at the University of Missouri, Columbia)

  • Shawn Ni

    () (Department of Economics, at the University of Missouri, Columbia)

  • Michael Podgursky

    () (Department of Economics, at the University of Missouri, Columbia)

Abstract

State-specific licensing policies and pension plans create mobility costs for educators who cross state lines. We empirically test whether these costs affect production in schools–a hypothesis that follows directly from economic theory on labor frictions–using geo coded data on school locations and state boundaries. We find that achievement is lower in mathematics, and to a lesser extent in reading, at schools that are more exposed to state boundaries. A detailed investigation of the selection of schools into boundary regions yields no indication of systematic differences between boundary and non-boundary schools along other measured dimensions. Moreover, we show that cross-district labor frictions do not explain state boundary effects. Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that mobility frictions in educator labor markets near state boundaries lower student achievement.

Suggested Citation

  • Dongwoo Kim & Cory Koedel & Shawn Ni & Michael Podgursky, 2016. "Labor Market Frictions and Production Efficiency in Public Schools," Working Papers 1604, Department of Economics, University of Missouri, revised Jul 2017.
  • Handle: RePEc:umc:wpaper:1604
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    labor mobility; labor frictions; teacher labor market; teacher pensions; teacher licensing;

    JEL classification:

    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • J6 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers

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