NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Work Environment and Individual Background: Explaining Regional Shirking Differentials in a Large Italian Firm

Andrea Ichino, Giovanni Maggi

NBER Working Paper No. 7415
Issued in November 1999
NBER Program(s):   LS

The prevalence of shirking within a large Italian bank appears to be characterized by significant regional differentials. In particular, absenteeism and misconduct episodes are substantially more prevalent in the south. We consider a number of potential explanations for this fact: different individual backgrounds; group-interaction effects; sorting of workers across regions; differences in local attributes; different hiring policies and discrimination against southern workers. Our analysis suggests that individual backgrounds, group-interaction effects and sorting effects contribute to explain the north-south shirking differential. None of the other explanations appears to be of first-order importance.

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Published: Ichino, Andrea and Giovanni Maggi. "Work Environment And Individual Background: Explaining Regional Shirking Differentials In A Large Italian Firm," Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2000, v115(3,Aug), 1057-1090.

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