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Jel Classification:R12 

Working Paper
The City Paradox: Skilled Services and Remote Work

Large cities in the US are the most expensive places to live. Paradoxically, this cost is paid disproportionately by workers who could work remotely, and live anywhere. The greater potential for remote work in large cities is mostly accounted for by their specialization in skill- and information-intensive service industries. We highlight that this specialization makes these cities vulnerable to remote work shocks. When high-skill workers begin to work from home or leave the city altogether, they withdraw spending from local consumer service industries that rely heavily on their demand. As a ...
Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute Working Papers , Paper 43

Working Paper
Evidence on the Within-Industry Agglomeration of R&D, Production, and Administrative Occupations

To date, most empirical studies of industrial agglomeration rely on data where observations are assigned an industry code based on classification systems such as NAICS in North America and NACE in Europe. This study combines industry data with occupation data to show that there are important differences in the spatial patterns of occupation groups within the widely used industry definitions. We focus on workers in manufacturing industries, whose occupations almost always fit into three groups: production, administrative, or R&D. We then employ two approaches to document the spatial ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-2016-20

Journal Article
Why Are Some Places So Much More Unequal Than Others?

This study examines the magnitude and sources of regional wage inequality in the United States. The authors find that, as in the nation as a whole, wage inequality has increased in nearly every metropolitan area since the early 1980s, though there is significant variation among places in both the degree of wage inequality and the pace at which it has risen. The most unequal places tend to be large urban areas that have benefited from strong demand for skill and agglomeration economies, with these factors leading to particularly rapid wage growth for high-skilled workers. The least unequal ...
Economic Policy Review , Volume 25 , Issue Dec

Working Paper
The Consequences of Medicare Pricing: An Explanation of Treatment Choice

Primary care physicians (PCPs) provide more specialty procedures in less-urban areas, where specialists are fewer. Using a structural random-coefficient model and the demographic and time variation in the data, this paper shows that changes in policy-set reimbursements lead to a reallocation of the suddenly-more-remunerative procedures away from specialists and toward PCPs, and this effect is stronger, the more rural an area is. A reimbursement-unit increase for a given procedure leads to outside-metro PCPs gaining 7-15% market share more than metro PCPs in that procedure, at the expense of ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2020-063

Working Paper
The Size of U.S. Metropolitan Areas

Metropolitan areas—unions of nearby built-up locations within which people travel on a day-to-day basis among places of residence, employment, and consumption—serve as a fundamental unit of economic analysis. But existing delineations of U.S. metro areas—including metropolitan Core-Based Statistical Areas (CBSAs), Urbanized Areas, and Commuting Zones—stray far from this conception. We develop a flexible algorithm that uses commuting flows among U.S. census tracts in 2000 to match varied interpretations of our metropolitan conception. Under a baseline parameterization that balances ...
Research Working Paper , Paper RWP 21-02

Working Paper
Localized Knowledge Spillovers: Evidence from the Spatial Clustering of R&D Labs and Patent Citations

SUPERCEDES EORKING PAPER 17-32 Buzard et al. (2017) show that American R&D labs are highly spatially concentrated even within a given metropolitan area. We argue that the geography of their clusters is better suited for studying knowledge spillovers than are states, metropolitan areas, or other political or administrative boundaries that have predominantly been used in previous studies. In this paper, we assign patents and citations to these newly defined clusters of R&D labs. Our tests show that the localization of knowledge spillovers, as measured via patent citations, is strongest at small ...
Working Papers , Paper 19-42

Working Paper
The Geography of Business Dynamism and Skill Biased Technical Change

This paper seeks to explain several key components of the growing regional disparities in the U.S. since 1980: big cities saw a larger increase in the relative wages and relative supply of skilled workers, and a smaller decline in business dynamism. These trends can be explained by differences across cities in the extent to which firms adopt new skill-biased technologies. With the introduction of a new skill-biased, high fixed cost but low marginal cost technology, firms endogenously adopt more in big cities, cities that offer abundant amenities for high-skilled workers and cities that ...
Working Papers , Paper 2020-020

Working Paper
The supply and demand of skilled workers in cities and the role of industry composition

The share of high-skilled workers in U.S. cities is positively correlated with city size, and this correlation strengthened between 1980 and 2010. Furthermore, during the same time period, the U.S. economy experienced a significant structural transformation with regard to industrial composition, most notably in the decline of manufacturing and the rise of high-skilled service industries. To decompose and investigate these trends, this paper develops and estimates a spatial equilibrium model with heterogeneous firms and workers that allows for both industry-specific and skill-specific ...
Working Papers , Paper 14-32

Working Paper
The Relationship Between Race, Type of Work, and Covid-19 Infection Rates

This paper explores the relationship between Covid-19 infection rates, race, and type of work. We focus on three U.S. cities—Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia—allowing us to exploit zip code-level variation in infection rates and testing rates over time, while controlling for a variety of neighborhood demographic characteristics. We find that neighborhoods with higher Black and Hispanic population shares, and neighborhoods with higher shares of workers in high-social contact jobs within essential businesses, had disproportionately higher Covid-19 infection rates, even after applying our ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP2020-18

Working Paper
LOCALIZED KNOWLEDGE SPILLOVERS: EVIDENCE FROM THE AGGLOMERATION OF AMERICAN R&D LABS AND PATENT DATA

Supercedes 15-03 We employ a unique data set to examine the spatial clustering of private R&D labs. Instead of using fixed spatial boundaries, we develop a new procedure for identifying the location and size of specific R&D clusters. Thus, we are better able to identify the spatial locations of clusters at various scales, such as a half mile, 1 mile, 5 miles, and more. Assigning patents and citations to these clusters, we capture the geographic extent of knowledge spillovers within them. Our tests show that the localization of knowledge spillovers, as measured via patent citations, is ...
Working Papers , Paper 16-25

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