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Home | Events Archive | Knowledge Spillovers, Competition, and Individual Careers

Knowledge Spillovers, Competition, and Individual Careers

  • Series
  • Speaker(s)
    Thomas Cornelissen (University of Essex, United Kingdom)
  • Field
    Empirical Microeconomics
  • Location
    Erasmus University Rotterdam, Campus Woudestein, room M3-03
  • Date and time

    March 20, 2023
    11:30 - 12:30


Exposure to better peers at work may improve career prospects because of knowledge spillovers, but it can also harm career prospects if workers compete for career opportunities. Our identification strategy, based on a unique feature of the German labor market, allows us to disentangle these two effects. Focusing on young untrained workers and their exposure to high-quality colleagues in their first year in the labor market, we find strong evidence for persistent knowledge spillover effects, specifically so in occupations with high skill content and task complexity. We detect counteracting competition effects of similar magnitude such that the overall impact of exposure to better colleagues on worker careers is close to zero.

Joint work with Christian Dustmann and Uta Schönberg