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Birthplace diversity of the workforce and productivity spill-overs in firms


  • Mayr, Karin
  • Böheim, Rene
  • Horvath, Thomas


We analyze the effect of workforce composition by birthplace on workers' wages. In our model, each worker's productivity may depend on whether co-workers are of the same or of a different birthplace. Wages depend both on the relative size of workers' groups as well as on the production structure of firms. We derive empirically testable hypotheses about the effect of co-worker birthplace on wages using a stylized model of intra-firm spill-overs across worker groups. We find evidence for complementarities between workers of different birthplace in line with our model.

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  • Mayr, Karin & Böheim, Rene & Horvath, Thomas, 2013. "Birthplace diversity of the workforce and productivity spill-overs in firms," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79890, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc13:79890

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      • Josef Zweimüller & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer & Rafael Lalive & Andreas Kuhn & Jean-Philippe Wuellrich & Oliver Ruf & Simon Büchi, 2009. "Austrian Social Security Database," NRN working papers 2009-03, The Austrian Center for Labor Economics and the Analysis of the Welfare State, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
    2. Christian Dustmann & Albrecht Glitz & Uta Schönberg & Herbert Brücker, 2016. "Referral-based Job Search Networks," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 83(2), pages 514-546.
    3. Judith K. Hellerstein & David Neumark, 2008. "Workplace Segregation in the United States: Race, Ethnicity, and Skill," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(3), pages 459-477, August.
    4. Kremer, M & Maskin, E, 1996. "Wage Inequality and Segregation by Skill," Working papers 96-23, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    5. Michael Kremer, 1993. "The O-Ring Theory of Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 551-575.
    6. Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2016. "Rethinking The Effect Of Immigration On Wages," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Economics of International Migration, chapter 2, pages 35-80 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    7. Robert J. R. Elliott & Joanne K. Lindley, 2008. "Immigrant wage differentials, ethnicity and occupational segregation," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 171(3), pages 645-671.
    8. George J. Borjas, 2003. "The Labor Demand Curve is Downward Sloping: Reexamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 9755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    10. Carrington, William J & Troske, Kenneth R, 1998. "Interfirm Segregation and the Black/White Wage Gap," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(2), pages 231-260, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Trax, Michaela & Brunow, Stephan & Suedekum, Jens, 2015. "Cultural diversity and plant-level productivity," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 85-96.
    2. Alberto Alesina & Johann Harnoss & Hillel Rapoport, 2016. "Birthplace diversity and economic prosperity," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 101-138, June.
    3. Frédéric Docquier & Riccardo Turati & Jérôme Valette & Chrysovalantis Vasilakis, 2016. "Multiculturalism and Growth: Skill-Specific Evidence from the Post-World War II Period," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2016028, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    4. Stephan Kampelmann & François Rycx, 2016. "Wage discrimination against immigrants: measurement with firm-level productivity data," IZA Journal of Migration, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-24, December.
    5. repec:eee:chieco:v:46:y:2017:i:c:p:1-9 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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