NBER Publications by Sergey Lychagin

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Working Papers and Chapters

November 2013Better Luck Next Time: Learning Through Retaking
with Verónica Frisancho, Kala Krishna, Cemile Yavas: w19663
In this paper we provide some evidence that repeat taking of competitive exams may reduce the impact of background disadvantages on educational outcomes. Using administrative data on the university entrance exam in Turkey we estimate cumulative learning between the first and the nth attempt while controlling for selection into retaking in terms of observed and unobserved characteristics. We find large learning gains measured in terms of improvements in the exam scores, especially among less advantaged students.
July 2010Spillovers in Space: Does Geography Matter?
with Joris Pinkse, Margaret E. Slade, John Van Reenen: w16188
We simultaneously assess the contributions to productivity of three sources of research and development spillovers: geographic, technology and product–market proximity. To do this, we construct a new measure of geographic proximity that is based on the distribution of a firm’s inventor locations rather than its headquarters, and we report both parametric and semiparametric estimates of our geographic– distance functions. We find that: i) Geographic space matters even after conditioning on horizontal and technological spillovers; ii) Technological proximity matters; iii) Product–market proximity is less important; iv) Locations of researchers are more important than headquarters but both have explanatory power; and v) Geographic markets are very local.
May 2010Back on the Rails: Competition and Productivity in State-owned Industry
with Sanghamitra Das, Kala Krishna, Rohini Somanathan: w15976
We use a proprietary data set on the floor-level operations at the Bhilai Rail and Structural Mill in India to understand the determinants of changes in plant productivity in 2000-2003. During this period there was a 35 percent increase in output with minimal changes in factors of production, but sizable reductions in production delays. We model interruptions to the production process and find that a large part of these reductions are attributable to training. Our results suggest that specific knowledge-enhancing investments can have very high returns, and that the threat of competition provides powerful incentives to undertake such investments.

Published: Sanghamitra Das & Kala Krishna & Sergey Lychagin & Rohini Somanathan, 2013. "Back on the Rails: Competition and Productivity in State-Owned Industry," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 136-62, January. citation courtesy of

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