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Identifying the value of teamwork: Application to professional tennis

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  • Devereux, Kevin

Abstract

Do workers vary in their ability to work with others? I compare a given worker's productivity in solitary production to their value-added to team production to identify team skills: a worker's contribution to team production above and beyond that given by general skills. The identifying assumption is that workers use general skills in both production functions, but team skills only in team production. Professional men's tennis provides a useful setting to compare solo work (singles) to teamwork (doubles). I find that around 50% of variation in team output is explained by team skills. This is robust to a variety of specifications, including nonlinearities in player inputs. Players sort positively-assortatively along both skill dimensions, yielding indirect returns to skills of about half the magnitude of the direct returns.

Suggested Citation

  • Devereux, Kevin, 2018. "Identifying the value of teamwork: Application to professional tennis," CLEF Working Paper Series 14, Canadian Labour Economics Forum (CLEF), University of Waterloo.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:clefwp:14
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    Cited by:

    1. Kevin Devereux, 2021. "Returns to Teamwork and Professional Networks: Evidence from Economic Research," Working Papers 202101, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
    2. Ben Weidmann & David J. Deming, 2020. "Team Players: How Social Skills Improve Group Performance," NBER Working Papers 27071, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    skills; human capital; teamwork; sorting; non-partite matching; assortative matching;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C33 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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