Working Paper No. 661

How Important is Access to Jobs? Old Question - Improved Answer

Published: February 14, 2006Pages: 34Keywords: Spatial Mismatch; Endogenous Location; Natural ExperimentJEL-codes: J15; J18; R23

How Important is Access to Jobs? Old Question - Improved Answer Olof Åslund, John Östh and Yves Zenou


We study the impact of job proximity on individual employment and earnings. The analysis exploits a Swedish refugee dispersal policy to get exogenous variation in individual locations. Using very detailed data on the exact location of all residences and workplaces in Sweden, we find that having been placed in a location with poor job access in 1990-91 adversely affected employment in 1999. Doubling the number of jobs in the initial location in 1990-91 is associ­ated with 2.9 percentage points higher employment probability in 1999. The analysis suggests that residential sorting leads to underestimation of the impact of job access.

Interdisciplinary European Studies

The European Union and the Return of the Nation State

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This book explores the complex and ever-changing relationship between the European Union and its member states. The recent surge in tension in this relationship has been prompted by the actions of some member state governments as they question fundamental EU values and principles and refuse to implement common decisions seemingly on the basis of narrowly defined national interests.

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