Inter-city wage differentials and intra-city workplace centralization
DEWEY, JAMES; MONTES ROJAS, GABRIEL VICTORIO
Regional Science and Urban Economics
Año: 2009 vol. 39 p. 602 - 602
We explore the interaction of inter-city and intra-city wage differentials by occupation. The paper makes two main contributions. 1) We construct an occupation-specific index of workplace centralization that accounts for the difference between average employment density from the perspective of employees in each occupation and average employment density from the perspective of all employees. 2) We provide empirical evidence that relative wages of central to non-central occupations increase with city size, or equivalently, the elasticity of wages with respect to city size increases with occupational centrality. We conjecture that this empirical regularity arises because, as city size increases, workers in more central occupations face an increasingly less desirable locus of housing prices and commuting times relative to workers who have jobs in residential areas. The results are robust to the inclusion of individual-specific human capital variables and city-specific fixed effects.