Work In Progress
Abstract: Using a unique dataset on subjective probabilities of employment and earnings expectations for a nationally representative sample of Italian skilled unemployed aged between 25 and 34 in 2015, this paper proposes new measures of job instability, job insecurity and earnings risk, and assesses their determinants. The results show that young Italian skilled unemployed face substantial job instability, insecurity and risk, and that having personal contacts and being able to turn to the family of origin in case of financial difficulties are the main factors reducing both instability and insecurity.
Loveless, Matthew and Chiara Binelli. Explaining Individuals’ Perceptions of National-level Income Inequality in the United Kingdom
Abstract: For the first time the 2014 British Election Study asked respondents to identify any change in the difference in incomes in the UK over the past twenty years. Just over three-quarters of the respondents correctly identified an increase in this difference. Here, we draw from the existing – if limited – literature to develop a framework for understanding what drives individuals’ perceptions of national-level income inequality. We find that UK respondents with higher political knowledge and left-leaning ideological self-identification are more likely to identify this increase in inequality. At the same time, these same respondents were more likely to report a large (vs. small) increase. As a possible explanation, we show that respondents’ coherent normative orientations to inequality appear to magnify ideological differences. This suggests that while ideology may provide a broad organizing schema for individuals’ perceptions of macro-economic phenomena, normative orientations may have a significant intervening role.
Binelli, Chiara, Costas Meghir, and Naercio Menezes-Filho. 2015. Education and Wages in Brazil
Abstract: This paper examines the puzzling evidence on wages and education in Brazil. While returns to college have remained high, college graduation increased up to the birth cohort of 1950 and decreased for the 1950s and 1960s birth cohorts. We show that there are available places at private colleges, and that schools’ resources substantially increased in the 1960s. We jointly model educational choices, labor force participation and wages, and we compute marginal and internal rates of returns based on the model. We find that the high returns to college reflect significant constraints to educational choices rather than returns to unobserved ability.
Loveless, Matthew and Chiara Binelli. Understanding the Effect of Employment Insecurity on Political Engagement: A Pilot Study of Unemployed Youth in Italy
Using a pilot study on young university-degree holders in Italy (between 25-34 years old), we assess the effect of individuals expectations about job prospects on their political behaviors. To do so, we propose a new measure of perceived potential job insecurity and instability and link these to variation in political orientation; engagement; and attitudes. The results suggest that those with lower expectations about eventual job security and stability are more politically apathetic or tend toward more extreme political parties and participation. This bodes poorly for many European countries as the long-term effects of high levels of unemployment appear to be either demobilizing or polarizing.
Binelli, Chiara, Helene Bie Lilleør, Katja M. Kaufmann, and Christopher Ksoll. Insurance Networks, Subjective Expectations and Activity Choice in Malawi