Working Papers:


Social Insurance and Occupational Mobility
(with Pedro Silos) Download Paper

This paper studies how insurance from progressive taxation improves thematching of workers to occupations. We propose an equilibrium dynamic as-signment model to illustrate how social insurance encourages mobility. Work-ers experiment to find their best occupational fit in a process filled with uncer-tainty. Risk aversion and limited earnings insurance induce workers to remainin unfitting occupations. We estimate the model using microdata from theUnited States and Germany. Higher earnings uncertainty explains the U.S.higher mobility rate. When workers in the United States enjoy Germany’shigher progressivity, mobility rises. Output and welfare gains are large.


Coordinated Work Schedules and the Gender Wage Gap
(with Chinhui Juhn and Pedro Silos) Download Paper

Married women with kids that are full time workers work less and allocate more time to home production than their men counterparts. At the same time the labor market is characterized by occupations that differ in terms of the coordination of the work schedules. Workers that work in occupations that concentrate hours at peak times of the day are paid a higher wage, but relatively lower if they are women. The higher demand for family time women face restricts their occupational choice and thus drives a gap in their earnings relative to men. We incorporate these trade offs in an occupation choice model with home production in which workers have comparative advantages to work into different occupations. In the model, labor supply, the supply of family time and the occupational choice are intimately related. The effect of differences in household care responsibilities between men and women in their occupational choice explain half of the observed gender earnings gap.


Lack of Infrastructure?: Public Capital and Economic Development
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This paper offers new evidence on the sources of cross-country income differences by investigating the role public capital in economic development. For a sample of 90 countries it first documents that public capital represents, on average, a third of the total capital stocks. In addition, it greatly varies across countries and it is negatively correlated with output per worker. I develop a methodology that links production functions with national accounts data that allows to measure the contribution of both public and private capital stocks to output. If public capital is a pure public good and it is a complement of private capital, compared to the standard accounting exercise, differences in factor of production can account for more than double of the observed cross-country variation in income per worker.

Work In Progress:


Capital-Skill Complementarity and Economic Development
(with B. Ravikumar and Gustavo Ventura)

Demographic Change and Productivity
(with Julio Garin and Pedro Silos)

Education Quality, Occupations and Economic Development: Is there a Skill-Technology Mismatch?
(with Elisa Keller and Michelle Rendall)