Quaderni di Dipartimento [serie ordinaria - Anno 2007]


ELENCO DEI QUADERNI DI DIPARTIMENTO - WORKING PAPERS

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ISSN: 2279-9559 (dal n. 1 al n. 157), 2279-9567 (dal n. 158 al n. 363), 2279-9575 (dal n. 364 in poi)

308  Francesco SCHETTINO, Alessandro STERLACCHINI
European Patenting and the Size of Inventors [dicembre 2007]
Keywords:
  European patents, European patents, Firm size, Firm size, Intellectual property rights, Intellectual property rights, Inventors, Patent quality, Patent quality
JEL Classification:
  L20 Industrial Organization - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - General
  L20 Industrial Organization - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - General
  O31 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
  O31 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
  O34 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development - Intellectual Property Rights
  O34 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development - Intellectual Property Rights
Abstract:
  This paper presents the results of a survey on a regional sample of Italian inventors who, over the period 1991-2005, have submitted patent applications to the European Patent Office. The inventors' features and patenting activities are mainly examined according to the size of the firms they are working in. Compared to those coming from medium-large companies, `small inventors' (encompassing employees or owners of small firms and independent inventors) have a lower educational level, ascribe less importance to codified sources of knowledge and are less productive in terms of patent applications. However, by using forward citations and other indicators, it emerges that there is no difference in the average quality of patented inventions of the two groups. Nevertheless, one third of small inventors evaluates negatively its patenting experience, while it is true for only a tiny fraction of larger patentees. On the basis of further interviews, we find that the inventors' assessments are particularly influenced by their different capabilities to enforce intellectual property rights.
Citations:   CitEc
 
307  Michele FRATIANNI
The Gravity Equation in International Trade [dicembre 2007]
Keywords:
  borders, currency unions, gravity equation, regional trade agreement, trade theories
JEL Classification:
  E58 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - Central Banks and Their Policies
  F15 International Economics - Trade - Economic Integration
  F33 International Economics - International Finance - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
  G15 Financial Economics - General Financial Markets - International Financial Markets
Abstract:
  This chapter offers a selective survey of the gravity equation (GE) in international trade. This equation started in the Sixties as a purely empirical proposition to explain bilateral trade flows, without little or no theoretical underpinnings. At the end of the Seventies, the GE was "legitimized" by a series of theoretical articles that demonstrated that the basic GE form was consistent with various models of trade flows. Empirical applications of GE expanded to cover a variety of issues, such as the impact of regional trade agreements, national borders and currency unions on trade, as well as the use of the equation to sort out the relative merit of alternative trade theories. A new wave of studies is now concentrating on the general equilibrium properties of the GE and finer econometrics points. The renewed interest of the academic profession in the development of the GE is undoubtedly driven by the equation's empirical success.
Citations:   CitEc
 
306  Alessandro STERLACCHINI, Francesco VENTURINI
Boosting Manufacturing Productivity Through R&D: International Comparisons with Special Focus on Italy [dicembre 2007]
Keywords:
  R&D capital stock, manufacturing industries, productivity growth
JEL Classification:
  L6 Industrial Organization - Industry Studies: Manufacturing
  O3 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development
  O4 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity
Abstract:
  Using data for twelve manufacturing industries of five developed countries over the period 1980-2002, we perform a dynamic panel estimation - based on a ECM model - of the long-run elasticity of TFP with respect to the stock of R&D capital. The highest elasticity is found for the US (0.51) while lower values arise for Germany (0.29), France (0.23) and Spain (0.22); the latter, in turn, are higher than that estimated for Italy (0.14). The unsatisfactory performance of Italian manufacturing industries is confirmed by further analyses in which a better measurement of TFP is provided and the time period extended. The above findings and their policy implications are discussed firstly in the light of the US-EU divide in terms of R&D-induced productivity growth and, subsequently, by focussing on the Italian case.
Citations:   CitEc
 
305  Alessia LO TURCO, Massimo TAMBERI
Specialize Rightly or Decline [dicembre 2007]
Keywords:
  economic growth, panel data, specialization
JEL Classification:
  F43 International Economics - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - Economic Growth of Open Economies
  O47 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - Measurement of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
Abstract:
  Is exporting potato chips really the same than exporting microchips? Is the rate of economic growth independent on the export structure? Is moving toward dynamic sectors a key for economic growth? Our purpose is to determine whether and how the sectoral composition of exports aects countries growth. Dierently from Hausmann, Hwang and Rodrik (2006), we measure the nature of specialization as the average human capital content of countries' exports and we also propose the average world demand growth as an indicator to test whether demand apart from supply is relevant to growth. We finally test all these indexes in a panel data model of growth determinants finding a positive and significant relation between growth and the average skill content of countries' exports: a 1% increase in the average share of the human capital contained in exports causes the steady state real GDP per worker to grow of about 2%. Finally, there is slight evidence that moving towards export structures focused on moredynamic goods in terms of world demand growth helps growth too.
Citations:   CitEc
 
304  Pietro ALESSANDRINI, Andrea PRESBITERO, Alberto ZAZZARO
Bank Size or Distance: What Hampers Innovation Adoption by SMEs ? [novembre 2007]
Keywords:
  Bank Size, Functional Distance, Innovation, SMEs
JEL Classification:
  G21 Financial Economics - Financial Institutions and Services - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
  G34 Financial Economics - Corporate Finance and Governance - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
  O31 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
  R51 Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics - Regional Government Analysis - Finance in Urban and Rural Economies
Abstract:
  A growing body of research focuses on banking organizational issues, emphasizing the culties encountered by hierarchically organized banks in lending to borrowers/projects with high intensity of soft information. However, as the two extreme cases of hierarchical and non-hierarchical organizations are typically contrasted, what actually shapes the degree of hierarchy and how to measure it remain fairly vague. In this paper we compare bank size and distance between bank's branches and headquarter as possible sources of organizational frictions. In particular, we study the impact of distance and bank size on the firms' likelihood of introducing innovations and financing constraints on a sample of Italian SMEs. Our results show that firms located in provinces where the local banking system is functionally distant are less inclined to introduce innovations and are more likely to be credit rationed. Conversely, we find that the market share of large banks is only rarely statistically significant and when it is, the economic impact on the probability of introducing innovation and credit rationing is appreciably smaller than that of functional distance.
Citations:   CitEc
 
303  Michele FRATIANNI
The Evolutionary Chain of International Financial Centers [ottobre 2007]
Keywords:
  amsterdam, antwerp, banking, evolution, finance, florence, genoa, london, money, new york, venice
JEL Classification:
  G15 Financial Economics - General Financial Markets - International Financial Markets
  G21 Financial Economics - Financial Institutions and Services - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
  H63 Public Economics - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt
  N20 Economic History - Financial Markets and Institutions - General, International, or Comparative
Abstract:
  Financial products are unstandardized and subject to a great deal of uncertainty. They tend to concentrate geographically because of the reduction in information costs resulting from close contacts. Concentration leads to economies of scale and encourages external economies. Great financial centers enjoy a high degree of persistence but are not immune from decline and eventual demise. Yet, their achievements are passed along in a an evolutionary manner. In revisiting the historical record of seven international financial centers -Florence, Venice, Genoa, Antwerp, Amsterdam, London and New York_ the paper finds evidence of a long evolutionary chain of banking and finance. As to the present and the future, the forces of integration are likely to give an additional boost to the persistence of international financial centers.
Citations:   CitEc
 
302  Aleksandra PARTEKA
Employment and Export Specialization Patterns versus GDP Per Capita Performance - Unifying Approach [ottobre 2007]
Keywords:
  comparative advantage, industrial specialisation, trade specialisation
JEL Classification:
  F16 International Economics - Trade - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
  J31 Labor and Demographic Economics - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
  L6 Industrial Organization - Industry Studies: Manufacturing
Abstract:
  The underneath motivation of this study is based on the findings confirming that specialisation is non neutral on a country's growth performance. Consequently, it seems important to analyse the evolution of specialization patterns along the process of economic development. The scope of the paper is twofold: first of all, it aims at understanding if the evolution of employment specialisation is reflected in the same manner in trade specialisation patterns. Secondly, it explores the link between the degree of specialization on one side and cross country GDP per capita performance on the other. The paper challenges other empirical studies present in the specialization literature and contributes by presenting simultaneously the evolution of sectoral dispersion patterns emerging from employment and trade data. The sample of countries (32 world economies on different stages of economic development), the time span (1980 onwards) and the sectoral composition of the two datasets are retained constant. By comparing the results obtained with various inequality indicators, including a wide range of absolute and relative measures, we demonstrate the relevance of the methodological setting used for the assessment of economic activity dispersion. Next, we perform nonparametric and semiparametric estimations in order to reveal the `specialization curve' which describes the evolution of specialization along the development path. We find a support for nonlinear relationship between the two dimensions of specialization and GDP per capita levels, with a tendency towards despecialization in the initial phase of economic growth.
Citations:   CitEc
 
301  Saul DESIDERIO, Davide DOTTORI
A note on competitive toughness: why it should be identified neither with product substitutability, nor (inversely) with concentration. Toward a unified theory of oligopoly. [ottobre 2007]
Abstract:
  Often the intensity of competition has been measured through proxies like the degree of product substitutability or as the inverse of the degree of concentration in an industry. Both visions are based on the implicit assumption that few competitors imply a less though competition, but puzzles arise as several counter-examples exist. Other puzzling issues arise from the lack of a unified approach to oligopolistic equilibria (e.g. Cournot vs Bertrand competition). In this paper the unified approach of competitive toughness proposed by D'Aspremont et al.(2007), offering a generalization of the traditional oligopoly theory encompassing all the possible oligopolistic regimes between the Cournot and the competitive outcome, is discussed, also with respect to its implication for economic growth and macro studies.
Citations:   CitEc
 
300  Roberto ESPOSTI
On the Decline of Agriculture. Evidence from Italian Regions in the Post-WWII Period [ottobre 2007]
Keywords:
  Panel data, SVAR Models, Structural change, agriculture
JEL Classification:
  C33 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - Models with Panel Data; Longitudinal Data; Spatial Time Series
  O10 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Economic Development - General
  O11 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Economic Development - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
Abstract:
  This article investigates the long-run decline of the agricultural sector during economic development and its contribution to this process. A two-sector model is proposed where the share of agriculture, relative prices and capital accumulation are simultaneously determined within the economy. Under this general equilibrium framework, short-run adjustments with respect to long-run equilibria are admitted through a set of alternative dynamic specifications. The model is then applied to the panel dataset of 20 Italian regions observed over the period 1951-2002 of dramatic economic development but still persistent disparities between Southern and Northern regions.
Citations:   CitEc
 
299  Chiara BROCCOLINI, Alessia LO TURCO, Andrea PRESBITERO, Stefano STAFFOLANI
International Outsourcing vs. ICT in explaining the wage gap in Italian Manufacturing [settembre 2007]
Keywords:
  ICT, inequality, international outsourcing, wage
JEL Classification:
  C23 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - Models with Panel Data; Longitudinal Data; Spatial Time Series
  F16 International Economics - Trade - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
  J31 Labor and Demographic Economics - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
  O3 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development
Abstract:
  The aim of this paper is to empirically evaluate the relative eects of international outsourcing of materials and services and of ICT capital deepening on wage inequality between blue and white collars in the Italian manufacturing industry during the period 1985 - 1999. We merge an administrative data set on workers' wages and individual characteristics with data on imported inputs from Italian input-output tables and other sector-level variables. Results show that international outsourcing plays an important role in shaping the observed pattern in the wage gap, both in traditional and innovative industries, while the role of technological change is less pronounced and limited to innovative sectors.
Citations:   CitEc
 
298  Luca FANELLI, Giulio PALOMBA
Simulation-Based Tests of Forward-Looking Models Under VAR Learning Dynamics [settembre 2007]
Keywords:
  Monte Carlo test, VAR, adaptive learning, cross-equation restrictions, forward-looking model, new Keynesian Phillips curve, simulation techniques
JEL Classification:
  C12 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - Hypothesis Testing: General
  C32 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Models
  C52 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Econometric Modeling - Model Evaluation, Validation, and Selection
  D83 Microeconomics - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief
  E10 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - General Aggregative Models - General
Abstract:
  In this paper we propose simulation-based techniques to investigate the finite sample performance of likelihood ratio (LR) tests for the nonlinear restrictions that arise when a class of forward-looking (FL) models, typically used in monetary policy analysis, is evaluated with Vector Autoregressive (VAR) models. We consider both `one-shot' tests and sequences of tests under a particular form of adaptive learning dynamics, where `boundedly rational' agents use VARs recursively to update their beliefs. The analysis is based on the comparison of the likelihood of the unrestricted and restricted VAR, and the p-values associated with the LR statistics are computed by Monte Carlo simulation. We also address the case where the variables of the FL model are approximated as non-stationary cointegrated processes. Application to the New Keynesian Phillips Curve in the euro area shows that the FL model of inflation dynamics is not rejected once the suggested simulation-based tests are applied. The result is robust to specification of the VAR as a stationary (albeit highly persistent) or cointegrated system. However, in the second case the imposition of cointegration restrictions changes the estimated degree of price stickiness.
Citations:   CitEc
 
297  Caterina LUCARELLI, Giulio PALOMBA
Investors' Behaviour in the Chinese Stock Exchanges: Empirical Evidence in a Systemic Approach [settembre 2007]
Keywords:
  chinese stock exchanges, corporate governance, investors' behaviour, shareholders' rights, system of simultaneous equations
JEL Classification:
  C30 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - General
  F30 International Economics - International Finance - General
  G18 Financial Economics - General Financial Markets - Government Policy and Regulation
Abstract:
  This paper investigates the Chinese mainland Stock Exchanges and their following interconnecting features: savers' attitude towards stock investments, investors' trading behaviour and stock returns explanations. We evaluate the eectiveness of the recent eorts made by the Chinese authorities to improve the level of legal protections for shareholders and the opening-up of the Chinese Stock Markets to foreign investors. The whole analysis is carried out through a system of simultaneous equations. The main results are that Chinese shareholders and stock markets are mostly driven by emotional behaviour. Stock market returns are barely influenced by the overall chinese economic booming, but reveal the presence of speculative influences. Investors' behaviour, as well as general trading activities, hardly seems to be aected by the legal framework introduced by the national Authorities.
Citations:   CitEc
 
296  Francesco MARCHIONNE
Microsimulation Models. An Integrated Approach with Real Data [agosto 2007]
Abstract:
  Due to the increasing the calculus power of computers, a growing number of economic phenomena are being studied through microsimulation. However, this methodology is not updated, and the basic structure of these models is till tied to outdated technologies where economic hypothesis was used to simplify computational complexity as the calculus power of computers was not strong enough. In this paper, I suggest an innovative approach to the microsimulation. From a theoretical point of view, it should be more efficient than the traditional approach. The paper is divided in three section. In the first section, I explain this innovative approach and show its operating differences respect to the traditional approach. In the second section, I explore the difficulties of its concrete implementation through a case study and recommend some technical solutions in order to overcome them. In the last section, I summarize the main results.
Citations:   CitEc
 
295  Raffaella SANTOLINI
Incomplete Information in Tax Setting of Local Governments: a Theoretical Framework [agosto 2007]
Keywords:
  incomplete information, informative trend, political trend, tax mimicking
JEL Classification:
  H30 Public Economics - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - General
  H71 Public Economics - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - State and Local Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
  H77 Public Economics - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism; Secession
Abstract:
  In the literature, tax interaction is mainly due to tax and yardstick competition. However, we suppose that tax interaction appears when the local policy maker conforms his fiscal policy to decisions taken by his neighbourhood to fill information gaps. Theoretical results show that incomplete information leads to tax mimicking and a higher level of tax rate. Moreover, leviathan governments are more sensitive than benevolent ones to changes in neighbours tax rates (horizontal tax interaction) but less to changes in the central government tax rate (vertical tax interaction). Finally, there is no tax rate internalization effects because an increase in the central government tax rate is not followed by an equivalent decrease of local government tax rate.
Citations:   CitEc
 
294  Raffaella SANTOLINI
An Empitical Analysis of Political and Informative Trends on Municipalities of an Italian Region. [luglio 2007]
Keywords:
  informative trend, political trend, spatial econometrics, tax mimicking
JEL Classification:
  C31 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Intera
  H71 Public Economics - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - State and Local Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
  H72 Public Economics - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - State and Local Budget and Expenditures
  H77 Public Economics - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism; Secession
Abstract:
  The aim of this paper is to conduct an empirical investigation regarding the presence of political and informative trends in tax setting of local governments as an alternative theoretical explanation to the tax mimick-ing. Both phenomena have been tested on municipalities' cross-sectional data of the Marche region with a spatial econometrics model. Discrimi-nating among several sources of tax mimicking, including public spend-ing spill-over, some evidence was found in favour of the political trend. As regards the informative trend, non significant results were observed testing tax interaction among heterogeneous coalitions. However, some evidence is present on local public spending.
Citations:   CitEc
 
293  Andrea BONFIGLIO, Francesco CHELLI
Assessing the Behaviour of Non-Survey Methods of Constructing Regional Input-Output Tables through a Monte Carlo Simulation [giugno 2007]
Keywords:
  Monte Carlo simulation, impact analysis, multidimensional scaling procedure, non-survey techniques, regional policy
JEL Classification:
  C15 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - Statistical Simulation Methods: General
  C67 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - Input–Output Models
  R15 Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics - General Regional Economics - Econometric and Input–Output Models; Other Models
Abstract:
  The paper aims to analyse the tendency of a battery of non-survey techniques of constructing regional I-O tables to over-(under-)estimate impact. The behaviour of the regionalization methods is assessed relatively to the techniques analysed. For this aim, a Monte Carlo simulation has been carried out. Then, a multidimensional scaling procedure has been applied to search for a common and repeated structure of differences among the methods and to give an immediate picture of possible implications, in terms of impact direction, coming from the choice of a given regionalisation method rather than another. Afterwards, the results have been compared to those obtained by applying the same procedure to 2000 I-O tables, which have been mechanically constructed for the 20 Italian regions. The results indicate that the choice of the regionalization method is crucial in estimating multipliers. According to the chosen method, the extent of multipliers could be considerably bigger or lower. This can have serious repercussions in terms of policy choices and, therefore, policy makers and I-O analysts should be aware of it. In addition, the results have confirmed a tendency of the methods to over-(under)-estimate impact both statistically and empirically. However, they have also shown that sectoral aggregation can reverse this tendency. Finally, from an economic point of view, it turned out that the most recent Flegg et al. Location Quotient (Flegg et al., 1995; Flegg and Webber, 1997) is the best to represent regional economies.
Citations:   CitEc
 
292  Pietro ALESSANDRINI, Alberto NICCOLI
Finanza internazionale e distribuzione del reddito [giugno 2007]
Keywords:
  current account adjustment, international financial system, stock-flows interrelations
JEL Classification:
  F3 International Economics - International Finance
  F4 International Economics - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance
Abstract:
  Our purpose is to reconsider Vicarelli's main contributions on the international financial crisis and its impact on the international distribution of income in the period from Fifties to Seventies of the last century. Vicarelli used a unifying approach that integrates four levels of analysis. First of all, a rigorous theoretical scheme supported by empirical evidence. Second, the integration between real e monetary analysis of the international exchange. Third, the short run view extended to the long run. Finally, the interrelations between flows and stocks. The main focus is concentrated on the disequilibria in the current accounts of the balance of payments, that determine a redistribution of financial wealth among surplus and deficit countries. The lack of adjustment of the international disequilibria increases in the long run the accumulation of financial assets (for surplus countries) and liabilities (for deficit countries). This is the main source on the potential instability of the international monetary and financial systems. Expectations of changes in the exchange rates, in the interest rates, in the rates of inflation bring about sudden reallocations of the stock of financial assets. The undesired result is the destabilizing impact on the exchange markets and on the real markets, as it was experienced in the multiple crisis of the Bretton Woods system during the Sixties and also in the oil crises of the Seventies. The integrated approach adopted by Fausto Vicarelli is still alive. With the due differences, we are again in presence of structural imbalances in the international payments, with the consequent accumulation of financial stocks. The potential instability of the international system is in part under control of better equipped and more independent central banks. This is a reassuring item. On the other hand we cannot forget the overwhelming role of the size of financial stocks on the size of flow disequilibria. Causes and implications of this structural change are analyzed in the second part of the paper. From this point of view the conclusions are less reassuring.
Citations:   CitEc
 
291  Francesco MARCHIONNE
Microsimulation applied to Pension System: Redistribution effect od Reforms in Italy [giugno 2007]
Abstract:
  Amato reform ('92), Dini reform ('95), Prodi reform ('98), Maroni-Berlusconi reform ('04): in the last 15 years all governments have modified the Italian pension system. What has changed? What will change? Why? What are the goals? In the chaos of reforms the only certainty for the citizens seems that future pensions will be lower than present ones. But ... how lower will they be? Who has really "won" the reform match? In the general reduction in performance, who has "lost less"? And above all, is the era of reforms in Italy over or is it just the first half of a "film"? In the following pages, I will try to answer to all these questions. In the first part, I will analyze the characteristics of the Italian pension system before the 90's reforms to understand how they have affected the pension system system. In the second part, I will try to foresee the effects these reforms will have in the next decade through a microsimulation model. This model has been created with an innovative procedure based on an integrated (and non sequential) simulation of events. This new approach should guarantee more efficiency with respect to the traditional one even though there are some technical complications in its implementation. Two main results have been obtained. The first one is that actuarial equity is mainly achieved by homogenising regimes and by raising the minimum requisites for being eligible for pension ('92 reform) more than through the introduction of defined contributions ('95 reform). The second result is that excessive lowering of benefits affects negatively on actuarial equity weakening a basic principle established by the reforms themselves. Practically, the non-division of assistance from pension system and the low level of performance determine unhomogeneous benefits. From a pure actuarial defined contribution system point of view, it is unjustified. Without praising how much good has been achieved till date, the new reforms should be aimed at overcoming these precise obstacles.
Citations:   CitEc
 
290  Antonio G. CALAFATI
La città come "sistema progressivo": evoluzione strutturale e sviluppo economico [giugno 2007]
Keywords:
  città, economia urbana, sviluppo economico, teoria dei sistemi
JEL Classification:
  R10 Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics - General Regional Economics - General
  R11 Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics - General Regional Economics - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, and Changes
Abstract:
  [ITALIANO] - Utilizzando come punto di partenza la "teoria dei sistemi (progressivi)" - e assegnando alla relazione causale struttura-prestazioni un ruolo centrale - questo lavoro delinea una prospettiva metodologica per lo studio dello sviluppo economico delle città. La prospettiva proposta conduce a spostare il focus scientifico dell'economia urbana sull'identificazione della "struttura" e sull'analisi della "evoluzione strutturale" delle città. Inoltre, trattandosi di sistemi aperti, l'evoluzione strutturale viene valutata rispetto ai cambiamenti del contesto relazionale ("ambiente") delle città. Studiare le determinanti della traiettoria di sviluppo economico di una città significa, quindi, studiare l'evoluzione della sua struttura, riconducendola all'interagire di un insieme di meccanismi evolutivi, ciascuno con la sua logica, i quali devono essere esaminati in modo concreto piuttosto che astratto. [ENGLISH] - By moving from the theory of "progressive systems" - and assigning to the causal relationship "structure-performances" a key role - this paper outlines a methodological perspective to study the economic development of cities. The proposed perspective leads to shift the scientific focus of urban economics to the identification of the "structure" and the analysis of the "structural evolution" of cities. Moreover, being cities - as any other complex system - an "open system", its structural evolution has to be evaluated with regard to its changing "environment". To study the development trajectory of city means, therefore, to study the evolution of its structure, which is the emerging outcome of the interplay of a constellation of adjustment mechanisms, each with its own rationale, which have to be examined with a substantive rather than a formal approach.
Citations:   CitEc
 
289  Giulio PALOMBA, Emma SARNO, Alberto ZAZZARO
Testing similarities of short-run inflation dynamics among EU countries after the Euro [giugno 2007]
Keywords:
  Euro, autoregressive metric, inflation dynamics
JEL Classification:
  C23 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - Models with Panel Data; Longitudinal Data; Spatial Time Series
  E31 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
Abstract:
  In this paper we introduce new definitions of pairwise and multivariate similarity between short-run dynamics of inflation rates in terms of equality of forecast functions and show that in the context of invertible ARIMA processes the Autoregressive distance introduced by Piccolo (1990) is a useful measure to evaluate such similarity. Then, we study the similarity of shortrun inflation dynamics across EU-15 area countries during the Euro period. Consistent with studies on inflation differentials and inflation persistence, our findings suggest that after seven years from the launch of the Euro the degree of similarity of short-run inflation dynamics across EU countries is still weak.
Citations:   CitEc
 
288  Michele FRATIANNI, Chang HOON HO
On the Relationship Between RTA Expansion and Openness [giugno 2007]
Keywords:
  gravity equation, plurilateral RTAs, size, trade creation, trade diversion
JEL Classification:
  F13 International Economics - Trade - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
Abstract:
  We test the relationship between the size of regional trade agreements (RTA) and openness using a gravity equation with multilateral trade factors on a large sample of 143 countries over period 1980-2003. Our sample includes eleven RTAs, seven with constant membership and four with an expanding membership. In the first group, there are more stumbling blocs than building blocs to freer global trade. In the second group, the opposite holds. We also find that regional trade bias declines with the size of the club and that three of the four expanding RTAs have already surpassed their æoptimalÆ size.
Citations:   CitEc
 
287  Michele FRATIANNI
Karl Brunner il monetarista [giugno 2007]
Keywords:
  IS-LM model, credit market, monetarism, money supply
JEL Classification:
  B22 History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - Macroeconomics
  B31 History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches - History of Economic Thought: Individuals - Individuals
  E44 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Money and Interest Rates - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
  E51 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
  E58 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - Central Banks and Their Policies
Abstract:
  Karl Brunner (1916-1989) was, with Milton Friedman and Allan Meltzer, the leader of the monetarist revolution of the Sixties and the Seventies. His work on asset markets placed the credit market, along with the money market, at center stage and focused on monetary policy as a primary source of instability. With Allan Meltzer he challenged the validity of the Keynesian paradigm and proposed an alternative model of the economy where the transmission of monetary impulses to the economy did not depend exclusively on the interest sensitivity of the demand for money but on the relative interest elasticities of the asset markets as well on variations in wealth. An unexpected feature of the alternative model is that fiscal policy determines the price level. Brunner had a strong foundation in methodology and was an adherent of the empirical philosophy school. In addition to asset markets and macroeconomics, Krunner wrote extensively on the nature of man, the role of markets and institutions. Finally, Brunner launched and managed the Journal of Money, Credit and Banking , the Journal of Monetary Economics, the Konstanzer Seminar on Monetary Theory and Monetary Policy, the Interlaken Conference on Analysis and Ideology, the Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, and the Shadow Open Market Committee (the last two with Allan Meltzer).
Citations:   CitEc
 
286  Matteo PICCHIO
The Dynamics of Unemployment, Temporary and Permanent Employment in Italy [maggio 2007]
Keywords:
  dynamic unobserved effects, individual heterogeneity, probit model, stepping stone, temporary employment, unemployment
JEL Classification:
  C23 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - Models with Panel Data; Longitudinal Data; Spatial Time Series
  C25 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions
  C35 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions
  J29 Labor and Demographic Economics - Demand and Supply of Labor - Other
Abstract:
  This paper evaluates whether and on the extent to which temporary jobs have been a springboard to regular jobs in Italy. Using the 2000, 2002, and 2004 waves of the Survey of Italian Households' Income and Wealth several dynamic unobserved effects probit models for the probability of having a permanent job are estimated. The main results show that a temporary position, rather than being unemployed, significantly increases the probability of having a permanent job 2 years later of about 13.5-16 percentage points. The robustness of this stepping stone effect is then assessed relaxing the parametric assumptions on unobserved individual heterogeneity.
Citations:   CitEc
 
285  Francesco CHELLI, Elvio MATTIOLI
Plutocratic and Democratic Consumer Price Indexes: an Estimation of a Democratic Index for Italy 1995-2005 [maggio 2007]
Keywords:
  consumer price indexes, inflation, plutocratic and democratic indexes, price policy
JEL Classification:
  C43 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - Index Numbers and Aggregation
  E31 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
  E64 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - Incomes Policy; Price Policy
Abstract:
  The consumer price indexes for the entire country and those for individual households are weighted arithmetic averages of relative prices, and they differ essentially in terms of their weighting systems. Whereas the former use the proportions of total expenditure on goods and services, the latter use the proportions of expenditure by each household. In the usual calculation of the index for the entire country, each household contributes to determining the national index with a weight proportional to its expenditure. In other words, the households that spend more - that is, the wealthier ones - are represented in calculation of the national index to a greater extent, and this explains why the latter is termed the 'plutocratic index'. In contraposition to plutocratic indexes are the 'democratic' ones in which the same weight is assigned to each household.
The paper presents a first estimation of the democratic price indexes for Italy in the period 1995-2002. The results show significant differences between the two calculation methods.
Citations:   CitEc
 
284  Marco MARINUCCI
Research Joint Ventures e Welfare: Una Rassegna sulla Letteratura Teorica [aprile 2007]
Keywords:
  collusione, innovazione, research join ventures, sussidi, welfare
JEL Classification:
  D43 Microeconomics - Market Structure and Pricing - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
  L13 Industrial Organization - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
  L4 Industrial Organization - Antitrust Issues and Policies
  O31 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
  O32 Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - Technological Change; Research and Development - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
Abstract:
  [ENGLISH] This paper reviews the theoretical literature concerning the welfare effects of research joint ventures. The analysis pays attention to both the most debated questions and the topics not yet covered in the literature. The study suggests the existence of two main streams: one positive, the other normative. Moreover, the survey suggests that some questions are still unsolved while others have been not properly faced. [ITALIANO] Il contributo del presente lavoro consiste nel valutare come la letteratura teorica ha affrontato il tema delle Research Joint Ventures dal punto di vista dell'analisi di welfare, facendo particolare attenzione ai pricipali problemi affrontati e di capire, allo stesso tempo, le eventuali direzioni ancora da esplorare. Lo studio ha permesso di individuare due filoni, uno di tipo positivo, l'altro di tipo normativo. Inoltre, dalla letteratura si evince che non solo alcuni temi sono rimasti senza una risposta univoca ma che altri non sono stati ancora affrontati in modo adeguato.
Citations:   CitEc
 
283  Enzo VALENTINI
Inequality and Underground Economy: A Not so Easy Relationship [aprile 2007]
Keywords:
  inequality, tax evasion, underground economy
JEL Classification:
  H26 Public Economics - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - Tax Evasion
  I3 Health, Education, and Welfare - Welfare and Poverty
Abstract:
  Economic theory is paying increasing attention to non-observed economy (NOE) and its causes. Recently, a couple of works (Rosser et al. 2000, Rosser et al. 2003) have claimed that there is a positive relationship between income inequality and the size of NOE. This supposed relationship is not so clear and deserves in-depth analysis. There is a crucial aspect that has been completely avoided in these studies: income inequality is mainly measured using "regular" incomes and this fact could lead to some bias. The existence of a certain size of NOE implies some income evasion which can affect the inequality indexes used in the study of the relationship between NOE and inequality. Including the regional share of NOE in a wage equation I find that, in the specific case of the Italian private sector employees, the income evasion attached to NOE tends to reduce inequality measured by regular wages statistics.
Citations:   CitEc
 
282  Michele FRATIANNI
Borders and the Constraints of Globalization [aprile 2007]
Keywords:
  borders, gravity model, integration, monetary unions, rta
JEL Classification:
  E58 Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - Central Banks and Their Policies
  F15 International Economics - Trade - Economic Integration
  F33 International Economics - International Finance - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
  G15 Financial Economics - General Financial Markets - International Financial Markets
Abstract:
  National borders are a big hurdle to the expansion of the open economy. Integration today remains imperfect because national borders translate into trading costs, including differences in monetary regimes. Political borders shelter many goods and services from external competition and, consequently, represent a critical exogenous force in the integration process. Borders are thicker for the small countries than the large countries. Regional trade arrangements have softened or, in some cases, pushed outward national borders, but in the process new borders have emerged. Borders affect also finance and monies. While the speed of financial integration suggests currency consolidation and a decline in the ratio of independent monies to sovereign nations, the formation of multilateral monetary unions pushes the ratio towards unity.
Citations:   CitEc
 
281  Antonio G. CALAFATI
  La valutazione del lavoro scientifico nelle scienze sociali [marzo 2007]
JEL Classification:
  A11 General Economics and Teaching - General Economics - Role of Economics; Role of Economists; Market for Economists
  A12 General Economics and Teaching - General Economics - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
  A13 General Economics and Teaching - General Economics - Relation of Economics to Social Values
  A14 General Economics and Teaching - General Economics - Sociology of Economics
  B4 History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches - Economic Methodology
Abstract:
  La valutazione del lavoro scientifico ha assunto un grande rilievo nel discorso pubblico negli ultimi anni in Italia e con la costituzione dell'Agenzia per la Valutazione della Ricerca e dell'Università (ANVUR) sembra ora destinata a mutare profondamente, nelle sue procedure e criteri. Ma la valutazione è parte integrante del lavoro scientifico, e ogni discorso sulla valutazione - e, anche, ogni intervento volto a modificarne procedure e criteri - dovrebbe iniziare dalla riflessione sui meccanismi che caratterizzano, in ogni momento storico e in ogni paese, l'organizzazione sociale della scienza. Inoltre, non si dovrebbe dimenticare che la valutazione è intrecciata ai fondamenti epistemologici, morali e sociali dell'attività scientifica. Questo saggio si propone di dimostrare perché è necessario riflettere sul significato e sulla funzione della valutazione del lavoro scientifico con riferimento, da una parte, all'organizzazione sociale della scienza e, dall'altra, alle interpretazioni che la filosofia della scienza, la sociologia della scienza e la storia della scienza ci hanno proposto.
Citations:   CitEc
 
280  Antonio G. CALAFATI
  Milton Friedman's Epistemology [marzo 2007]
JEL Classification:
  B10 History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches - History of Economic Thought through 1925 - General
  B20 History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - General
  B40 History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches - Economic Methodology - General
  B41 History of Economic Thought, Methodology, and Heterodox Approaches - Economic Methodology - Economic Methodology
Abstract:
  Friedman published his celebrated "The Methodology of Positive Economics" in 1952. In it Friedman set himself a normative objective: that of defining the procedures and rules with which economists must comply in their research activity in order to achieve 'scientific knowledge'. Despite the radical criticisms brought against it within the profession and, above all, from philosophers of science, Friedman's canons have been the basis for an extraordinary large body of economic research over several decades. By moving from a historical-critical level, this paper sets forth to explain the widespread acceptance in economics of Friedman's canons notwithstanding that from a strictly epistemological point of view his position is patently self-contradictory. Friedman's epistemology, it is argued in the paper, has 'solved' a fundamental problem of methodology, and namely the integration of apriorism and empiricism - a question that had become of central importance in economics since the Thirties and was regarded as the main challenge to the neoclassical scientific paradigm.
Citations:   CitEc
 
279  Michele FRATIANNI, John PATTISON
Who Is Runninc the IMF: Critical Shareholders or the Staff? [marzo 2007]
Keywords:
  critical shareholder, g-7, imf, principal-agent relationship, staff autonomy
JEL Classification:
  D71 Microeconomics - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
  F13 International Economics - Trade - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
  F15 International Economics - Trade - Economic Integration
Abstract:
  The paper deals with the principal-agent relationship at the International Monetary Fund (IMF). We argue that residual control rights at the IMF are vested with the critical shareholders, the countries included in the G-7. This group controls vast financial resources and enjoys the highest regulatory and governance standards among IMF members. Imperfect incentives for monitoring and the complexity of the issues give staff and management a degree of autonomy. The evidence marshalled in the paper suggests that critical shareholders are in charge on those issues they care most about, leaving discretion to staff and management on peripheral issues.
Citations:   CitEc
 
278  Barbara ERMINI, Raffaella SANTOLINI
Horizontal Interaction on Local Councils' Expenditures. Evidence from Italy [febbraio 2007]
Keywords:
  local councils partnerships, local public expenditures, spatial econometrics, spill-overs, strategic interaction, yardistick competition
JEL Classification:
  C31 Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Intera
  D71 Microeconomics - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
  D72 Microeconomics - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - Political Processes: Rent-Seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
  H72 Public Economics - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - State and Local Budget and Expenditures
  H73 Public Economics - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - Interjurisdictional Differentials and Their Effects
Abstract:
  This paper seeks for public spending interdependence among jurisdictions within some Italian local councils. We find significant positive interaction among spending of neighboring local councils both at the level of total expenditure and also for different subcategories. However, this result applies only when spatial dependence is analyzed among geographically contiguous jurisdictions; different criteria of proximity do not give rise to any substantial form of interaction among local governments. Attempts to identifying the source of this interaction seem to refuse yardstick competition hypothesis. Fiscal spill-overs among jurisdictions appear as a more plausible explanation; we also find evidence that local councils partnerships fail to effectively internalize these spill-overs. Finally, commuting affects spatial interdependence among jurisdictions.
Citations:   CitEc
 
277  Massimiliano BRATTI, Chiara BROCCOLINI, Stefano STAFFOLANI
Mass Tertiary Education, Higher Education Standard and University Reform: A Theoretical Analysis [febbraio 2007]
Keywords:
  ability, drop-out, enrolment, italy, reform, standard, university
JEL Classification:
  I21 Health, Education, and Welfare - Education and Research Institutions - Analysis of Education
Abstract:
  After the "3+2" University reform in Italy there has been a fast increase in the number of students. A common wisdom is that this result was partly achieved by reducing the standard of Higher Education (HE). In this paper we first build a theoretical model in which individuals decide whether to enrol in HE along with their optimal course quality, and whether to dropout. Then, we use the model to analyse the effect of a reduction in the standards of HE courses available in the educational system on overall enrollment and drop-out. We show that a reduction in HE standard helps achieving a mass tertiary education by increasing both the number of students and that of university graduates but it does not necessarily increase the overall efficiency of the HE system measured in terms of drop-out or graduation rates.
Citations:   CitEc