The Migration of Technical Workers – Out now

Posted: November 27th, 2009 | Filed under: Front, Journal Papers, Research | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on The Migration of Technical Workers – Out now

Michael S. Dahl and Olav Sorenson

Using panel data on the Danish population, we estimated the revealed preferences of scientists and engineers for the places in which they choose to work. Our results indicate that these technical workers exhibit substantial sensitivity to differences in wages but that they have even stronger preferences for living close to family and friends. The magnitude of these preferences, moreover, suggests that the greater geographic mobility of scientists and engineers, relative to the population as a whole, stems from more pronounced variation across regions in the wages that they can expect. These results remain robust to estimation on a sample of individuals who must select new places of work for reasons unrelated to their preferences—those who had been employed at establishments that discontinued operations.

Michael S. Dahl and Olav Sorenson (2010) “The migration of technical workers”,Journal of Urban Economics, Vol. 67 (1), pp. 33-45 [DOI Link]


The Social Attachment to Place

Posted: July 5th, 2008 | Filed under: Front, Journal Papers, Research | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on The Social Attachment to Place

Michael S. Dahl and Olav Sorenson

Many theories either implicitly or explicitly assume that individuals readily move to locations that improve their financial well being. Other forces, however, counteract these tendencies; for example, people often wish to remain close to family and friends. We introduce a methodology for determining how individuals weight these countervailing forces, and estimate how both financial incentives and social factors influence the probability of geographic mobility in the Danish population from 2002 to 2003. Our results suggest that individuals respond to opportunities for higher pay elsewhere, but that their sensitivity to this factor pales in comparison to their preferences for living near family and friends.

Social Forces, Vol. 89, No. 2, December 2010, DOI link to paper


Are Firm Growth Rates Random? Patterns and Dependencies

Posted: March 6th, 2004 | Filed under: Front, Journal Papers | Tags: , , | Comments Off on Are Firm Growth Rates Random? Patterns and Dependencies

Toke Reichstein and Michael S. Dahl

Using Danish firm data covering almost 9000 observations, we find significant proof that firm growth cannot be considered as a simple Gibrat growth process. Key variables, such as size, age, geographical location and industry structure are tested against firm growth rates in turnover and employment. Besides running the regressions on all observations, we also consider and find highly interesting patterns in an industry context. Thus, we conclude that firm growth cannot be considered idiosyncratic. Firm growth is highly dependent on industry and geography.

Toke Reichstein and Michael S. Dahl (2004), “Are Firm Growth Rates Random? Patterns and Dependencies”, International Review of Applied Economics, Vol. 18, No. 2, pp. 225-246. ISSN: 0269-2171. [DOI Link]