Digital Theses Archive


Tesi etd-07282016-090644

Type of thesis
Essays on Economic Coordination and Change: from Industry and Labour Markets to Macroeconomic Regimes of Growth
Scientific disciplinary sector
SCIENZE ECONOMICHE E MANAGERIALI - International Doctoral Program in Economics
relatore Prof. DOSI, GIOVANNI
  • evolutionary economics
  • industrial dynamics
  • unemployment
  • inequality
  • agent-based macroeconomics
  • non-linear dynamical systems
Exam session start date
The objective of the thesis is to perform a theoretical analysis of the two distinctive but intertwined mechanisms of economic dynamics, namely the process of coordination and the one of change. A multifaceted perspective of analysis will be undertaken since the objects under study will span from the dynamic of industry, moving to the organization of labour markets and ending with the analysis of growth regimes. <br>The micro-macro slant will both structure the discussion and guide the organization of the papers. The evolutionary approach will inform the entire development of the thesis.<br>No empirical exercise is undertaken, even though providing plausible modelling descriptions of the empirical evidence is actually the main purpose of each chapter. <br>The used methodology encompasses the analysis of stochastic processes, agent based simulations, non-linear dynamics and statistical analysis. In the modelling approach, along the thesis, a tension between reduced forms and fully-fledged models is clearly evident. In fact, one of the intrinsic scope of the thesis is also exploring alternative but complementary modelling strategies, aware of the compromise between realism and tractability.<br>The thesis is organised in five parts: introduction, industrial dynamics, labour<br>market and archetypes of capitalisms, macroeconomic regimes of growth, con-<br>clusions. More specifically, the first Chapter (1) will provide an introduction and<br>a file rouge of the thesis, positioning the thesis in the evolutionary literature.<br>The second part addresses the topic of industrial dynamics. <br>Chapter 2, based on Dosi et al., (2015b), tries to interpret an ensemble of stylised facts on industrial dynamics which ubiquitously emerges across industries, levels of aggregation, times and countries. They include wide and persistent asymmetries in degrees of relative efficiency; skewed size distributions; persistent turbulence in market dynamics; negative scaling relations between firm sizes and variance in firm growth rates; and, last but not least, fat-tailed distributions of growth rates. We show that all these regularities can be accounted for by a simple evolutionary model wherein the dynamics is driven by some learning process by incumbents and entrants together with some process of competitive selection.<br>The third Chapter (3), based on Dosi et al., (2016f), investigates, by means of a Kriging meta-model, how robust the “ubiquitousness” feature of fat-tailed distributions of firm growth rates is with regard to a global exploration of the parameters space. The exercise confirms the high level of generality of the results got in Chapter 2 in a statistically robust global sensitivity analysis framework.<br>The third part focuses on labour markets and archetypes of capitalisms. Chapter 4, based on Dosi et al., (2016e), presents an Agent Based Model (ABM) that investigates the effects of different archetypes of capitalism – in terms of regimes of labour governance defined by alternative mechanisms of wage determination, degree of labour protection and productivity sharing –, on (i) macroeconomic dynamics (long-term rates of growth, GDP fluctuations, unemployment rates, inequality), (ii) labour market regularities. The model robustly shows that more flexibility in terms of variations of monetary wages and labour mobility – irrespectively of how it fosters allocative efficiency, a topic outside the concerns<br>of this paper – is prone to induce systematic coordination failures, higher macro<br>volatility, higher unemployment, higher frequency of crises.<br>The fifth Chapter (5), based on Dosi et al., (2016d), building on the model of the previous Chapter (4), is meant to analyse the effects of labour market structural reforms. We introduce a policy regime change characterized by a set of structural reforms on the labour market, keeping constant the structure of the capital- and consumption-good markets. The Chapter shows how labour market structural reforms reducing workers’ bargaining power and compressing wages tend to increase (i) unemployment, (ii) functional income inequality,<br>and (iii) personal income inequality. We further undertake a global sensitivity analysis on key variables and parameters which confirms the robustness of our findings.<br>The last Chapter (6), based on Dosi et al., (2015c), presents a non linear dynamical model of macroeconomic fluctuations encompassing both demand led and profit led regimes of investment and growth. The model generates both Goodwin Cycles under a profit-led accumulation regime and relatively orderly dynamics in a phase of the system characterized by accelerator-driven investment (and, thus, demand- driven growth). Moreover, such a Keynesian setup exhibits the coexistence of multiple attractors hinting at the multiplicity of growth paths whose selection plausibly depends on history and on public policies.<br>Finally, the fifth part concludes, presenting a summary of the findings and<br>further developments.