Wednesday, 20 June 2007

"Electoral Bias and Policy Choice: Theory and Evidence'' forthcoming QJE, November 2007

A paper by Timothy Besley and Ian Preston entitled ''Electoral Bias and Policy Choice: Theory and Evidence'' is forthcoming in Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol 122:4 (November 2007).

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

"Contract Duration and Investment Incentives: Evidence from Land Tenancy Agreements" forthcoming JEEA, September 2007

A paper by Oriana Bandiera titled "Contract Duration and Investment Incentives: Evidence from Land Tenancy Agreements" is forthcoming in Journal of the European Economic Association in the September 2007 issue. The paper analyses the empirical determinants of contract length, a key and yet neglected dimension of contractual structure. The author estimates contract length and contract type jointly using original data on tenancy agreements signed between 1870 and 1880 in the district of Siracusa, Italy. The findings indicate that the choice of contract length is driven by the need to provide incentives for non observable investment, taking into account transaction costs and imperfections in the credit markets that make incentive provision costly. The results also illustrate that since both length and the compensation scheme are used to provide incentives within the same contract, joint analysis is important for a correct interpretation of the evidence.

Monday, 18 June 2007

"Incentives for Managers and Inequality Among Workers: Evidence from a Firm-level Experiment" QJE May 2007

A paper by Oriana Bandiera, Iwan Barankay, and Imran Rasul entitled 'Incentives for Managers and Inequality Among Workers: Evidence from a Firm-Level Experiment' has been published in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol 122:2 (May 2007). The authors present evidence from a firm level experiment that engineered an exogenous change in managerial compensation from fixed wages to performance pay based on the average productivity of lower-tier workers. They find that the introduction of managerial performance pay raises both the mean and dispersion of worker productivity. Analysis of individual level productivity data shows that managers target their effort towards high ability workers, and the least able workers are less likely to be selected into employment. These results highlight the interplay between the provision of managerial incentives and earnings inequality among lower-tier workers.

Saturday, 16 June 2007

Microeconomics of Growth Research Group Conference - Washington DC, June 7-8 2007

The Microeconomics of Growth Research Group, jointly headed by Robin Burgess and Chang-Tai Hsieh (University of California, Berkeley), organized a conference in Washington D.C. on June 7&8, 2007 on issues ranging from competitive rent preservation, impact of corruption, competition and property rights, cross country differences in productivity to credit limit constraints on the financial sector and economics of extortion and many others. For more details and papers, see Agenda: Microeconomics of Growth Conference.

Friday, 15 June 2007

CentrePiece - Summer (June) 2007

Culture Clash or Culture Club? The identity and attitudes of immigrants in Britain
Does Britain face a real threat from immigrants and minorities - particularly Muslims - who refuse to think of themselves as British? Alan Manning and Sanchari Roy have analysed data on the national identity and values of both immigrants and British-born people - and they conclude that fears of a 'culture clash' are seriously exaggerated. Read this article

See also: Culture Clash or Culture Club? The Identity and Attitudes of Immigrants in Britain CEP Discussion Paper No.790

"Language and Theory of the Firm", Quarterly Journal of Economics 122(1): 373-407, February 2007

A paper by Andrea Prat (joint with Jacques Cremer and Luis Garicano) titled "Language and Theory of the Firm" has been published in the QJE 122(1): 373-407, February 2007. The authors characterize efficient technical languages and study their interaction with the scope and structure of organizations. Efficient languages use precise words for frequent events and vague words for unusual ones. A broader organizational scope allows for more synergies to be captured, but reduces within-unit efficiency, since it requires a more generic language. A manager working as specialized translator may also be used to achieve between-unit coordination while maintaining separate languages. Their theory reconciles two recent well-documented phenomena within organizations: the recent increase in information centralization and the reduction in hierarchical centralization.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

EOPP to launch new website

You can preview the new EOPP website at

Comments and suggestions are welcome and can be posted on this blog.

Welcome to the EOPP Blog.

We would welcome any postings and comments related to development economics, political economy and public economics. If you know of any seminars, conferences or calls for papers please post these here too.