Marco Leonardi is Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Milan since January 2004.

He received his Laurea and Msc. Economics at Bocconi University in Milan. He then moved to the London School of Economics where he took his Master in Econometrics and Mathematical Economics and his Ph.D. in Economics under the supervision of Prof. Steve Nickell and Steve Pischke.

In 1999-2000 he was Visiting Scholar at the MIT Department of Economics.
In the Fall 2005 he was visiting Scholar at UC Berkeley.

His research interests are in labor economics with particular reference to wage inequality and earnings mobility.

He joined IZA as a Research Associate in September 2002 and became a Research Fellow in January 2004.



IZA Discussion Paper No. 10766

This paper estimates the causal effects of the 2003 reform of the Italian apprenticeship contract which aimed at introducing the "dual system" in Italy by allowing on-the-job training. The reform also increased the age eligibility of the apprenticeship contract and introduced a minimum floor to apprentices' wages. Using administrative data...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9254

We study the distributional effect of a wage indexation mechanism - the Scala Mobile (SM) - that heavily compressed the distribution of Italian wages during the 1970s and 1980s. The SM imposed large real wage increases at the bottom of the distribution and was essentially irrelevant for high-wage workers. We...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6526
published in: Economic Journal, 2012, 122 (562), F188-F215.

We investigate the effects of two reforms of temporary employment using panel data on Italian firms. We exploit variation in their implementation across regions and sectors for identification. Our results show that the reform of apprenticeship contracts increased job turnover and induced the substitution of external staff with firms' apprentices,...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5789
published as 'The impact of Bologna process on the graduate': in: Giornale degli economisti, 2010, 69 (3), 29-66

The Bologna process inspired the Italian 3+2 reform of the university system which constitutes a big increase in the supply of college graduates. This paper is a preliminary attempt to identify the effects of the reform on (i) the relative probability (relative to non-graduates) of employment of college graduates in...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5335
Marco Leonardi, Giovanni Pica

Theory predicts that the wage effects of government-mandated severance payments depend on workers' and firms' relative bargaining power. This paper estimates the effect of employment protection legislation (EPL) on workers' individual wages in a quasi-experimental setting, exploiting a reform that introduced unjust-dismissal costs in Italy for firms below 15 employees...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5011

This paper examines the relationship between product demand and the pattern of rising skill premia and rising employment of skilled workers in the US and the UK since the 1980s. If more skilled workers demand more skill-intensive goods, then an increase in relative skill supply will also induce a shift...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 4158
substantially revised version published in: Economic Policy, 2010, 25 (61). 117 - 163

This paper analyzes the joint effect of EPL and financial market imperfections on investment, capital-labour substitution, labour productivity and job reallocation in a cross-country framework. In the spirit of Rajan and Zingales (1998) and Ciccone and Papaioannou (2006), we exploit variation in the need for reallocation at the sectoral and...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 3622
published as 'Intergenerational persistence of educational attainment in Italy' in: Economics Letters, 2013, 118 (1), 229-232

In this paper we show that there is a reduction in the correlation coefficient between father and children schooling levels over time in Italy. However, focusing on equality of circumstances, we show that there is still a persistent difference in the odds of attaining a college degree between children of...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 3387
published in: European Economic Review, 2010, 54 (6), 832-854

Many contributions suggest that earnings instability has increased during the 1980s and 1990s. This paper develops and estimates an on-the-job search model of the labor market to study the contribution of wage inequality and job mobility in explaining earnings instability. To study the evolution over time of these different components...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 2994
published in: Annals of Economics and Statistics, 2013, 111/112, 35-70

We develop a non-rational expectation econometric model of sequential schooling decisions. Using unique Italian panel data in which individual differences in attitudes toward risk are measurable (with error), we investigate the effect of risk aversion on the probability of entering higher education. This allows us to characterize the subjective (as...