Working Paper No. 652

The Todaro Paradox Revisited

Published: November 9, 2005Pages: 25Keywords: Efficiency Wages; Search-Matching; Rural-Urban Migration; PolicyJEL-codes: D83; J41; J64; O15

The Todaro Paradox Revisited Yves Zenou


The Todaro Paradox states that policies aimed at reducing urban unemployment are bound to backfire: they will raise rather than reduce urban unemployment. The aim of this paper is to reexamine this paradox in the context of efficiency wage and search-matching models. For that, we study a policy that consists in decreasing the urban unemployment benefit. In an efficiency wage model, we find that there is no Todaro paradox while this is not always true in a search-matching model since a decrease in the urban unemployment benefit can increase both urban employment and unemployment.

 

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Martin Ljunge, IFN, is the author of a chapter, "Trust promotes health: addressing reverse causality by studying children of immigrants", in a new book edited by Sherman Folland and Eric Nauenberg. The cutting edge of research is presented, covering the ever-expanding social capital field.

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