Professor Dr. Steffen Müller

Professor Dr. Steffen Müller
Aktuelle Position

seit 5/20

Leiter der IWH-Insolvenzforschung

Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung Halle (IWH)

seit 1/19

Koordinator von MICROPROD

Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung Halle (IWH)

seit 10/14

Leiter der Abteilung Strukturwandel und Produktivität

Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung Halle (IWH)

seit 10/14

Professor für Wirtschaftswissenschaft: Produktivität und Innovation

Otto-von-Guericke-Universität, Magdeburg


  • betriebliche Produktivität
  • empirische Arbeitsmarktökonomik
  • betriebliche Gründungs- und Schließungsdynamik

Seit 2014 ist Steffen Müller Professor für Wirtschaftswissenschaften, Produktivität und Innovation an der Otto-von-Guericke-Universität Magdeburg und Leiter der Abteilung Strukturwandel und Produktivität am IWH. Er ist Koordinator von MICROPROD, CESifo Fellow sowie Mitglied im Bevölkerungsökonomischen Ausschuss und im Ausschuss für Sozialpolitik des Vereins für Socialpolitik.

Steffen Müller hat Volkswirtschaftslehre an der Universität Leipzig studiert. Er wechselte im Jahr 2005 an die Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, wo er 2009 bei Professor Regina T. Riphahn promovierte (Dissertation: Mandatory works councils in Germany: their effects on productivity and profits). Er habilitierte sich 2014 ebendort und erhielt die Lehrbefugnis für Volkswirtschaftslehre und Ökonometrie. Während dieser Zeit forschte Steffen Müller auch an der University of California in Berkeley und in Davis.

Ihr Kontakt

Professor Dr. Steffen Müller
Professor Dr. Steffen Müller
Leiter - Abteilung Strukturwandel und Produktivität
Nachricht senden +49 345 7753-708



Firm Wage Premia, Industrial Relations, and Rent Sharing in Germany

Boris Hirsch Steffen Müller

in: ILR Review, Nr. 5, 2020

Publikation lesen


Why Is there Resistance to Works Councils In Germany? An Economic Perspective

Steffen Müller Jens Stegmaier

in: Economic and Industrial Democracy, Nr. 3, 2020


Recent empirical research generally finds evidence of positive economic effects for works councils, for example with regard to productivity and – with some limitations – to profits. This makes it necessary to explain why employers’ associations have reservations about works councils. On the basis of an in-depth literature analysis, this article shows that beyond the generally positive findings, there are important heterogeneities in the impact of works councils. The authors argue that those groups of employers that tend to benefit little from employee participation in terms of productivity and profits may well be important enough to shape the agenda of their employers’ organization and have even gained in importance within their organizations in recent years. The authors also discuss the role of deviations from profit-maximizing behavior like risk aversion, short-term profit-maximization and other non-pecuniary motives, as possible reasons for employer resistance.

Publikation lesen


Industrial Relations: Worker Codetermination and Collective Wage Bargaining

Steffen Müller Claus Schnabel

in: Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik, Nr. 1, 2019


Trade unions and employers’ associations, collective bargaining, and employee representation at the workplace are the cornerstones of industrial relations systems in many developed countries. Germany stands out as a country with powerful works councils and a high coverage rate of collective bargaining agreements, supported by encompassing interest groups of employees and employers and by the state. The German case and the perceived stability of its industrial relations regime have attracted considerable attention among researchers and politicians, which also has to do with the country’s high productivity, comparably few strikes, and relatively minor employment problems. However, in recent years industrial relations in many countries including Germany have come under pressure and the fact that there is no obvious and clearly superior alternative to the current regime of industrial and labour relations may not be sufficient to guarantee the survival of the present system.

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The East-West German Gap in Revenue Productivity: Just a Tale of Output Prices?

Matthias Mertens Steffen Müller

in: IWH-Diskussionspapiere, Nr. 14, 2020


East German manufacturers’ revenue productivity (value-added per worker) is some 8 (25) percent below West German levels, even three decades after German unification. Using firm-product-level data containing information on product quantities and prices, we analyse the role of product specialisation and reject the prominent ‚extended work bench hypothesis‘, stating a specialisation of Eastern firms in the intermediate input production as explanation for these sustained productivity differences. We decompose the East’s revenue productivity disadvantage into Eastern firms selling at lower prices and producing more physical output for given amounts of inputs within ten-digit product industries. This suggests that Eastern firms specialise vertically in simpler product varieties generating less consumer value but being manufactured with less or cheaper inputs. Vertical specialisation, however, does not explain the productivity gap as Eastern firms are physically less productive for given product prices, implying a genuine physical productivity disadvantage of Eastern compared to Western firms.

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Worker Participation in Decision-making, Worker Sorting, and Firm Performance

Steffen Müller Georg Neuschäffer

in: IWH-Diskussionspapiere, Nr. 11, 2020


Worker participation in decision-making is often associated with high-wage and high-productivity firm strategies. Using linked-employer-employee data for Germany and worker fixed effects from a two-way fixed effects model of wages capturing observed and unobserved worker quality, we find that establishments with formal worker participation via works councils indeed employ higher-quality workers. We show that worker quality is already higher in plants before council introduction and further increases after the introduction. Importantly, we corroborate previous studies by showing positive productivity and profitability effects even after taking into account worker sorting.

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Do Asset Purchase Programmes Shape Industry Dynamics? Evidence from the ECB's SMP on Plant Entries and Exits

Manfred Antoni Michael Koetter Steffen Müller Talina Sondershaus

in: IWH-Diskussionspapiere, Nr. 12, 2019


Asset purchase programmes (APPs) may insulate banks from having to terminate relationships with unproductive customers. Using administrative plant and bank data, we test whether APPs impinge on industry dynamics in terms of plant entry and exit. Plants in Germany connected to banks with access to an APP are approximately 20% less likely to exit. In particular, unproductive plants connected to weak banks with APP access are less likely to close. Aggregate entry and exit rates in regional markets with high APP exposures are also lower. Thus, APPs seem to subdue Schumpeterian cleansing mechanisms, which may hamper factor reallocation and aggregate productivity growth.

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