399 research outputs found

    Occupational mobility within and between skill clusters: an empirical analysis based on the skill-weights approach

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    This paper applies Lazear\u27s skill-weights approach (2009) to analyze the specificity of skill combinations of various occupations and its effects on occupational mobility and wages. The results show that the more specific an occupation, the smaller the probability of an occupational change. We also identify clusters of occupations characterized by similar skill combinations and find that employees in specific occupations have a comparatively higher probability of changing occupations within a skill cluster than between skill clusters. Moreover, occupational mobility within a skill cluster results in wage gains, while between clusters it results in wage losses. Therefore, the acquired skill combination and the resulting skill cluster, rather than the occupation per se, crucially determines mobility. Thus, for educational policies, it is more important to study whether a skill cluster is sustainable than an occupation. (DIPF/Orig.

    The determinants of strategic partnerships in research and development (R&D) - a regional comparison among the German federal states

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    The systematic co-operation in R&D involving two or more enterprises or companies working with research organisations, suppliers, customers or even competitors has become a popular instrument of strategic management. As new empirical results from the IfM Bonn show, more than a quarter of all enterprises in the industrial sector and the industry-related services in Germany are participating in strategic partnerships of this kind. Strategic partnerships in R&D, which lead to new products or process innovations, have positive effects on a firmÂŽs competitive position. Governmental policy in Germany has recognized its importance for the economy and therefore provides financial aid for R&D-active enterprises. From the perspective of regional science the question is whether R&D co-operations have gained equal popularity all over the country or whether significant regional differences have to be taken into account. This paper examines determinants on enterprises participating in R&D co-operations with particular emphasis on regional influences. Data from a postal questionnaire was taken to form a sample of approx. 950 enterprises located all over the country. To establish the determinants and their relative influence a logistic regression is estimated. Further regional comparisons in R&D activities are carried out by chi-square-tests. The results of the bivariate analyses highlight regional differences in partnerships between enterprises and research organisations. It is remarkable that enterprises in the federal states which have the biggest problems in coping with structural changes, the East-German states, participate significantly more frequently in these partnerships than their West-German counterparts. However, the results of the logistic regression provide no evidence for regional differences concerning R&D co-operations on the whole. Not the location but structural features of the enterprises matter. For instance, plant size is positively associated with R&D co-operation: larger enterprises are more cooperation-oriented than smaller enterprises. Furthermore, the analysis identifies company-specific conditions that enable them to join R&D co-operations. Besides that, emphasis is put, for example, on experiences with other forms of strategic partnerships. The presence of company-owned R&D facilities is another requirement to find a chance to co-operate in most of the cases. Other variables such as the degree of monopoly power or the market structure do not influence the plantÂŽs capacity to join R&D partnerships.

    IT skills, occupation specificity and job separations

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    This paper examines how workers’ earnings change after involuntary job separations depending on the workers’ acquired IT skills and the specificity of their occupational training. We categorize workers’ occupational skill bundles along two independent dimensions. First, we distinguish between skill bundles that are more specific or less specific compared to the skill bundles needed in the overall labor market. Second, as digitalization becomes ever more important, we distinguish between skill bundles that contain two different types of IT skills, generic or expert IT skills. We expect that after involuntary separations, these different types of IT skills can have opposing effects, either reducing or amplifying earnings losses of workers with specific skill bundles. We find clearly opposing results for workers in specific occupations—but not in general occupations: Having more generic IT skills is positively correlated with earnings after involuntary separations, whereas more expert IT skills is negatively correlated

    Entrepreneurial Signaling via Education: A Success Factor in Innovative Start-Ups

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    Unlike traditional start-ups, innovative start-ups and their respective market partners are faced with severe problems of asymmetric information due to their lack of prior production history and reputation. Here, we study whether and how entrepreneurial signaling via education can help innovative entrepreneurs signal their abilities to banks and prospective employees. We argue that innovative entrepreneurs signal their quality by means of certain characteristics of their educational history. In particular, we expect potential employees to use an entrepreneur's university degree as a quality signal when deciding whether to accept a job at an innovative start-up, and we expect banks to use a more precise indicator, namely the actual length of study in relation to a standard length, as a signal when deciding to extend credit to an innovative founder. By contrast, traditional start-ups are not faced with the same problems of asymmetric information, so we do not expect employees or banks to require the same signals from them. We empirically test our hypotheses using a dataset of more than 700 German start-ups collected in 1998/99. All hypotheses are borne out by the dat

    Different degrees of skill obsolescence across hard and soft skills and the role of lifelong learning for labor market outcomes

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    This paper examines the role of lifelong learning in counteracting skill depreciation and obsolescence. We differentiate between occupations with more hard skills versus more soft skills and draw on representative job advertisement data that contain machine-learning categorized skill requirements and cover the Swiss job market in great detail across occupations (from 1950 to 2019). We examine lifelong learning effects for “harder” versus “softer” occupations, thereby analyzing the role of training in counteracting skill depreciation in occupations that are differently affected by skill depreciation. Our results reveal novel empirical patterns regarding the benefits of lifelong learning, which are consistent with theoretical explanations based on structurally different skill depreciation rates: In harder occupations, with large shares of fast-depreciating hard skills, the role of lifelong learning is primarily as a hedge against unemployment risks rather than a boost to wages. By contrast, in softer occupations, in which workers build on more value-stable soft-skill foundations, the role of lifelong learning instead lies mostly in acting as a boost for upward career mobility and leads to larger wage gains

    The role of fields of study for the effects of higher education institutions on regional firm location

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    The literature on knowledge spillovers provides evidence that higher education institutions (HEIs) positively affect regional firm location (i.e., start-ups or firms located in a region). However, less is known about how HEIs in different fields of study impact regional firm location in different industries. To investigate this question, we exploit the establishment of universities of applied sciences (UASs)—bachelor’s degree-granting three-year HEIs in Switzerland. We find that the effects of UASs are heterogeneous across fields of study and industries. UASs specializing in “chemistry and the life sciences” and “business, management, and services” are the only UASs that positively affect regional firm location across several industries. Positive effects emerge in service industries characterized by radical service, incremental product, or process innovations. Thus, UASs are not a one-size-fits-all solution for increasing regional firm location. Instead, only UASs specializing in particular fields of study positively influence firm location in certain industries

    Does updating education curricula accelerate technology adoption in the workplace? Evidence from dual vocational education and training curricula in Switzerland

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    In an environment of accelerating technological change and increasing digitalization, firms need to adopt new technologies faster than ever before to stay competitive. This paper examines whether updates of education curricula help to bring new technologies faster into firms’ workplaces. We study technology changes and curriculum updates from an early wave of digitalization (i.e., computer-numerically controlled machinery, computer-aided design, and desktop publishing software). We take a text-as-data approach and tap into two novel data sources to measure change in educational content and the use of technology at the workplace: first, vocational education curricula and, second, firms’ job advertisements. To examine the causal effects of adding new technology skills to curricula on the diffusion of these technologies in firms’ workplaces (measured by job advertisements), we use an event study design. Our results show that curriculum updates substantially shorten the time it takes for new technologies to arrive in firms’ workplaces, especially for mainstream firms

    The puzzle of non-participation in continuing training : an empirical study of chronic vs. temporary non-participation

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    "Although participation in continuing vocational training is often found to be associated with considerable individual benefits, a puzzlingly large number of people still do not take part in training. In order to solve the puzzle we distinguish between temporary and chronic non-participants. Previous studies have shown that training participants and non-participants differ in unobservable characteristics and therefore self-select into training or not. We show that even non-participants cannot be treated as a homogeneous group: there are those who never take part in training (chronic non-participants) and those who are not currently taking part (temporary (non-)participants). Using a unique data set of non-participants commissioned by the German 'Expert Commission on Financing Lifelong Learning' and covering a very large number of individuals not taking part in training, we separate and compare chronic and temporary non-participants. By estimating a sample selection model using maximum likelihood estimation we take potential selection effects into account: temporary (non-)participants may be more motivated or may have different inherent skills than chronic nonparticipants. We find that chronic non-participants would have higher costs than temporary (non-)participants and their short-term benefits associated with their current jobs would be lower. However, in the long run even chronic non-participants would benefit similarly from participation due to improved prospects on the labor market. The results indicate that chronic non-participants either misperceive future developments or suffer from an exceptionally high discount rate, which in turn leads in their view to a negative cost-benefit ratio for training." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en)) Additional Information Kurzfassung (deutsch) Executive summary (English)Weiterbildung, Teilnehmer, Bildungsbeteiligung, Bildungsinvestitionen, Bildungsertrag, Kosten-Nutzen-Analyse, Bildungsökonomie

    Effects of Training on Employee Suggestions and Promotions in an Internal Labor Market

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    We evaluate the effects of employer-provided formal training on employee suggestions for productivity improvements and on promotions among male blue-collar workers. More than twenty years of personnel data of four entry cohorts in a German company allow us to address issues such as unobserved heterogeneity and the length of potential training effects. Our main finding is that workers have larger probabilities to make suggestions and to be promoted after they have received formal training. The effect on suggestions is however only short term. Promotion probabilities are largest directly after training but also seem to be affected in the long term.productivity, insider econometrics, human capital, promotions, training