16.12.2015 • 45/2015
German Economy: Strong domestic demand compensates for weak exports
The upturn of the German economy is expected to gain further momentum as a consequence of strong domestic demand. Real gross domestic product is expected to increase by 1.6% in 2016. Consumer prices are expected to rise by 0.9%. Unemployment is expected to rise slightly because it will take time to integrate refugees into the labour market.
Read press release
Socially Gainful Gender Quotas
Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization,
We study the impact of gender quotas on the acquisition of human capital. We assume that individuals’ formation of human capital is influenced by the prospect of landing high-pay top positions, and that these positions are regulated by gender-specific quotas. In the absence of quotas, women consider their chances of getting top positions to be lower than men’s. The lure of top positions induces even men of relatively low ability to engage in human capital formation, whereas women of relatively high ability do not expect to get top positions and do not therefore engage in human capital formation. Gender quotas discourage men who are less efficient in forming human capital, and encourage women who are more efficient in forming human capital. We provide a condition under which the net result of the institution of gender quotas is an increase in human capital in the economy as a whole.
The Social Capital Legacy of Communism-results from the Berlin Wall Experiment
European Journal of Political Economy,
In this paper we establish a direct link between the communist history, the resulting structure of social capital, and attitudes toward spatial mobility. We argue that the communist regime induced a specific social capital mix that discouraged geographic mobility even after its demise. Theoretically, we integrate two branches of the social capital literature into one more comprehensive framework distinguishing an open type and a closed type of social capital. Using the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP) we take advantage of the natural experiment that separated Germany into two parts after the WWII to identify the causal effect of social capital on mobility. We estimate a three equation ordered probit model and provide strong empirical evidence for our theoretical propositions.
Social Capital and Migration Preferences - An Empirical Analysis for the Case of the Reunified Germany
Grincoh Working Papers July 2013,
We focus on the relevance of different types of social capital on migration intentions in the context of shrinking regions. On the one hand, formal social capital characterised by weak ties without local roots is supposed to drive selectivity and outmigration. On the other hand, informal social capital stressing strong ties to friends, relatives or neighbours might hinder migration. In our regression results we do not find an effect of shrinking regions on mobility intentions. Thus, living in a shrinking area is by itself not a reason to move away or to invest
less in social capital. However, if an individual considers to move away she reduces her participation in informal and formal networks. Individuals characterised by strong informal ties, i.e. strong relationships to friends, rel atives or neighbours show a significantly lower probability of moving away. And, more qualified types of social capital as participation in local politics or initiatives seem to encourage spatial mobility.
The Internationalization of Science and Its Influence on Academic Entrepreneurship
The Journal of Technology Transfer,
We examine whether scientists employed in foreign countries and foreign-educated native researchers are more “entrepreneurial” than their “domestic” counterparts. We conjecture that foreign-born and foreign-educated scientists possess broader scientific skills and social capital, which increases their likelihood that they will start their own companies. To test this hypothesis we analyze comprehensive data from researchers at the Max Planck Society in Germany. Our findings provide strong support for the conjecture that academic entrepreneurship can be stimulated by facilitating the mobility of scientists across countries.
Industrial Associations as a Channel of Business-Government Interactions in an Imperfect Institutional Environment: The Russian Case
IWH Discussion Papers,
International lessons from emerging economies suggest that business associations may provide an effective channel of communication between the government and the private sector. This function of business associations may become still more important in transition economies, where old mechanisms for coordinating enterprise activities have been destroyed, while the new ones have not been established yet. In this context, Russian experience is a matter of interest, because for a long time, Russia was regarded as a striking example of state failures and market failures. Consequently, the key point of our study was a description of the role and place of business associations in the presentday
Russian economy and their interaction with member companies and bodies of state
administration. Relying on the survey data of 957 manufacturing firms conducted in
2009, we found that business associations are more frequently joined by larger companies, firms located in regional capital cities, and firms active in investment and innovation. By contrast, business associations tend to be less frequently joined by business groups’ subsidiaries and firms that were non-responsive about their respective ownership structures. Our regression analysis has also confirmed that business associations are a component of what Frye (2002) calls an “elite exchange”– although only on regional and local levels. These “exchanges” imply that members of business associations, on the one hand, more actively assist regional and local authorities in social development of their regions, and on the other hand more often receive support from authorities. However, this effect is insignificant in terms of support from the federal government. In general, our results allow us to believe that at present, business associations (especially the
industry-wide and “leading” ones) consolidate the most active, advanced companies and act as collective representatives of their interests. For this reason, business associations can be regarded as interface units between the authorities and businesses and as a possible instrument for promotion of economic development.
Selektivität, soziale Bindung und räumliche Mobilität - Eine Analyse der Rückkehrpräferenz nach Ostdeutschland
Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftsgeographie,
Selectivity, social ties and spatial mobility. An analysis of preferences for return migration to East Germany. In the public debate, brain drain from East Germany is supposed to be the most critical trend regarding the development and catching up of the New Länder. Therefore, potential for in- and re-migration has attracted much attention at least in the political context. Our contribution analyses the remigration potential on basis of data from a DFG research project focussing on the re-migration intentions of people formerly emigrated from Saxony-Anhalt. The analysis concentrates on the following aspects: the effect of job market success after emigration; the impact of social ties to the origin and the host region and on the selectivity of re-migration preferences. The econometric results confirm several expected effects: On the one hand an individual’s job market success reduces the intention to return. Likewise, the re-migration preference increases for people whose expectations were disappointed. On the other hand, the relevance of social ties to the origin region for re-migration dispositions is confirmed by the estimations. Yet, regarding selectivity of re-migration preferences in terms of human capital econometric results are somewhat ambiguous.
What Can Currency Crisis Models Tell Us about the Risk of Withdrawal from the EMU? Evidence from ADR Data
Journal of Common Market Studies,
We study whether ADR (American depositary receipt) investors perceive the risk that countries such as Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal or Spain could leave the eurozone to address financial problems produced by the sub-prime crisis. Using daily data, we analyse the impact of vulnerability measures related to currency crisis theories on ADR returns. We find that ADR returns fall when yield spreads of sovereign bonds or CDSs (credit default swaps) rise (i.e. when debt crisis risk increases); when banks' CDS premiums rise or stock returns fall (i.e. when banking crisis risk increases); or when the euro's overvaluation increases (i.e. when the risk of competitive devaluation increases).
Informal Social Networks and Spatial Mobility
Individuals’ preferences in transition regions are still shaped by the former communist system. We test this ‘communist legacy’ hypothesis by examining the impact of acculturation in a communist regime on social network participation and, as a consequence, on preferences for spatial mobility. We focus on the paradigmatic case of Eastern Germany, where mobility intentions seem to be substantially weaker than in the Western part. Applying an IV ordered probit approach we ﬁrst ﬁnd that Eastern people acculturated in a communist system are more invested in locally bounded informal social capital than Western people. Second, we conﬁrm that membership in such locally bounded social networks reduces the intention to move away. Third, after controlling for the social network effect the mobility gap between East and West is substantially reduced. Low spatial mobility of the Eastern population, we conclude, is to an important extent attributable to a social capital endowment characteristic of post-communist economies