IZA DP No. 1173: Training and the Density of Economic Activity: Evidence from Italy
published in: Labour Economics, 2008, 15 (1), 118-140
We use a search and matching model to investigate the economic relationship between training and local economic conditions. We identify two aspects of this relationship going in opposite directions: on the one hand, the complementarity between local knowledge spillovers and training generates a positive correlation with local density; on the other hand, the negative influence of higher wages in denser areas reduces training. Overall the relationship can be either positive or negative, depending on the relative strength of the two effects. Our empirical analysis, based on a sample of Italian firms, shows that training is lower in provinces with higher labor market density, measured as the number of employees per squared kilometer. This empirical result confirms previous evidence by Brunello and Gambarotto (2004) based on UK data.