Poverty and Equity Global Practice of the World Bank
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Labor economics, Poverty, Inequality, Migration
Poverty and Equity Global Practice of the World Bank
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Hernan Winkler is a Senior Economist in the Poverty and Equity Global Practice. He specializes in labor economics, migration, and the sources and consequences of inequality and poverty. His research has been published in peer-reviewed journals including the Review of Economics and Statistics, the Journal of Development Economics and the Journal of Human Resources. He has led several World Bank reports including Reaping Digital Dividends: Leveraging the Internet for Development in Europe and Central Asia. Before joining the World Bank, he was a Researcher at CEDLAS. He holds a PhD in economics from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).
Publication Search Results
Now showing 1 - 10 of 25
El Salvador Job Diagnostic: Understanding Challenges for More and Better Jobs in El Salvador - An Integrated Approach(Washington, DC: World Bank, 2020-10-28) Banegas, Nancy ; Winkler, HernanEl Salvador faces significant challenges in the labor market, many of which may not be obvious when looking at aggregate job figures. This report provides a detailed analysis of the Salvadoran labor market between 2000 and 2017 and identifies the main bottlenecks preventing the creation of more and better jobs. It does so in three blocks. First, it describes the main trends in economic growth, its drivers, and implications for job creation. Second, it provides an in-depth analysis of factors constraining the demand for labor. Third, it analyzes which are the skills that the private sector is demanding, and what are the factors contributing to the wide and persistent gender and youth gaps in the labor market. The report concludes with policy recommendations to create more and better jobs in El Salvador.
Publication( 2015-03) Bogetic, Zeljko ; Onder, Harun ; Onal, Anil ; Skrok, Emilia ; Schwartz, Anita ; Winkler, HernanAging may be one of the most far-reaching processes defining the economic, fiscal, and social changes societies are likely to experience over the next 40 years. The demographic consequences of aging will have a dramatic impact on labor markets, economic growth, social structures--and government budgets. These issues have gained urgency after the second largest global recession in the past 100 years. Based on a broad comparative analysis of countries that include the EU and non-EU European and Central Asian countries, as well as several case studies and model simulations, the paper seeks to provide broad answers--tailored in part to distinct groups of countries according to their aging-fiscal profiles--to major questions facing governments budgets in aging societies: What are the fiscal-aging profiles of Western European, emerging European, and Central Asian countries? In other words, how good or bad is their fiscal situation--"initial conditions"--in view of their emerging aging-related problems? What kind of public spending pressures are likely to emerge in the coming decades, and what will be their relative importance? How do countries compare in terms of the possible impacts of aging on growth and long-term debt sustainability? What can be learned from in-depth and comparative case studies of aging, fiscal sustainability, and fiscal reform? Are there good-practice examples--countries doing things right at the right time--that may offer lessons for the others? And, perhaps most important, given the need for long-term fiscal consolidation for many countries, what kind of revenue and expenditure policy agendas are likely to emerge to mitigate the effects of aging? A key policy conclusion is that countries should aim for early rather than delayed reforms dealing with long-term aging pressures. The urgency is accentuated by the debt situations and/or adverse debt and demographic dynamics in almost all countries but also by the evolving voter preferences. As societies age and voting preferences increasingly reflect the political will of the older population, it will become more difficult to enact the necessary reforms ensuring social and fiscal sustainability.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2022-10) Bussolo, Maurizio ; Capelle, Damien ; Lokshin, Michael M. ; Torre, Iván ; Winkler, HernanDuring the last quarter century, job tenure in Europe has shortened. Using data from Eurostat Labor Force Surveys of 29 countries from 1995 to 2020 and applying an age-period-cohort decomposition to analyze changes in tenure for specific birth cohorts, this paper shows that tenure has shrunk for cohorts born in more recent years. To account for compositional changes within cohorts, the analysis estimates the probability of holding jobs of different durations, conditional on individual and employment-related characteristics. The estimations demonstrate that, over time, the likelihood of having a medium- or long-term job decreased and holding a short-term job increased. The paper also finds that stricter job protection legislation appears to decrease the probability of holding a short-term job, and higher trade openness and ICT-related technological change are correlated with an increase of that probability.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-05) Hatayama, Maho ; Viollaz, Mariana ; Winkler, HernanThe spread of COVID-19 and implementation of "social distancing" policies around the world have raised the question of how many jobs can be done at home. This paper uses skills surveys from 53 countries at varying levels of economic development to estimate jobs' amenability to working from home. The paper considers jobs' characteristics and uses internet access at home as an important determinant of working from home. The findings indicate that the amenability of jobs to working from home increases with the level of economic development of the country. This is driven by jobs in poor countries being more intensive in physical/manual tasks, using less information and communications technology, and having poorer internet connectivity at home. Women, college graduates, and salaried and formal workers have jobs that are more amenable to working from home than the average worker. The opposite holds for workers in hotels and restaurants, construction, agriculture, and commerce. The paper finds that the crisis may exacerbate inequities between and within countries. It also finds that occupations explain less than half of the variability in the working-from-home indexes within countries, which highlights the importance of using individual-level data to assess jobs’ amenability to working from home.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-07) Garrote Sanchez, Daniel ; Gomez Parra, Nicolas ; Ozden, Caglar ; Rijkers, Bob ; Viollaz, Mariana ; Winkler, HernanThis paper presents new estimates of the share of jobs that can be performed from home. The analysis is based on the task content of occupations, their information and communications technology requirements, and the availability of internet access by country and income groupings. Globally, one of every five jobs can be performed from home. The ability to telework is correlated with income. In low-income countries, only one of every 26 jobs can be done from home. Failing to account for internet access yields upward biased estimates of the resilience of poor countries, lagging regions, and poor workers. Since better paid workers are more likely to be able to work from home, COVID-19 is likely to exacerbate inequality, especially in richer countries where better paid and educated workers are insulated from the shock. The overall labor market burden of COVID-19 is bound to be larger in poor countries, where only a small share of workers can work from home and social protection systems are weaker. Across the globe, young, poorly educated workers and those on temporary contracts are least likely to be able to work from home and more vulnerable to the labor market shocks from COVID-19.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-03) Viollaz, Mariana ; Winkler, HernanThis article investigates the link between digital technologies and female labor market outcomes in a country with one of the largest gender disparities. It exploits the massive roll-out of mobile broadband technology in Jordan between 2010 and 2016 to identify the effect of internet adoption on labor force participation. Using panel data at the individual level with rich information on labor market outcomes, internet use and gender-biased social norms, the article finds that internet adoption increases female labor force participation but has no effect on male labor force participation. The increase in online job search explains some -- but not all -- of the total increase in female labor force participation. Only older and skilled women experience an increase in employment in response to having internet access. The internet also reduces the prevalence of gender-biased social norms, early marriage and fertility.
Publication(Washington, DC: World Bank, 2017-03-07) Kelly, Tim ; Liaplina, Aleksandra ; Tan, Shawn W. ; Winkler, HernanFrom East to West, the economies of Europe and Central Asia (ECA) are not taking full advantage of the internet to foster economic growth and job creation. The residents of Central Asia and the South Caucasus pay some of the highest prices in the world for internet connections that are slow and unreliable. In contrast, Europe enjoys some of the world’s fastest and affordable internet services. However, its firms and individuals are not fully exploiting the internet to achieve higher productivity growth as well as more and better jobs. Reaping Digital Dividends investigates the barriers that are holding back the broader adoption of the internet in ECA. The report identifies the main bottlenecks and provides policy recommendations tailored to economies at varying levels of digital development. It concludes that policies to increase internet access are necessary but not sufficient. Policies to foster competition, international trade and skills supply, as well as adapting regulations to the changing business environment and labor markets, will also be necessary. In other words, Reaping Digital Dividends not only requires better connectivity, but also complementary factors that allow governments, firms and individuals to make the most out of it.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-02) de Mello, Luiz ; Schotte, Simone ; Tiongson, Erwin R. ; Winkler, HernanThis paper looks at how individual preferences for the allocation of government spending change along the life cycle. Using the Life in Transition Survey II for 34 countries in Europe and Central Asia, the study finds that older individuals are less likely to support a rise in government outlays on education and more likely to support increases in spending on pensions. These results are very similar across countries, and they do not change when using alternative model specifications, estimation methods, and data sources. Using repeated cross-sections, the analysis controls for cohort effects and confirms the main results. The findings are consistent with a body of literature arguing that conflict across generations over the allocation of public expenditures may intensify in ageing economies.
Why Are the Elderly More Averse to Immigration When They Are More Likely to Benefit? evidence across countries: Evidence across Countries(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-02) Schotte, Simone ; Winkler, HernanUsing household surveys for 24 countries over a 10-year period, this paper investigates why the elderly are more averse to open immigration policies than their younger peers. The analysis finds that the negative correlation between age and pro-immigration attitudes is mostly explained by a cohort or generational change. In fact, once controlling for year of birth, the correlation between age and pro-immigration attitudes is either positive or zero in most of the countries in the sample. Under certain assumptions, the estimates suggest that aging societies will tend to become less averse to open immigration regimes over time.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2019-02) Artuc, Erhan ; Christiaensen, Luc ; Winkler, HernanFollowing a couple of decades of offshoring, the fear today is of reshoring. Using administrative data on Mexican exports by municipality, sector and destination from 2004 to 2014, this paper investigates how local labor markets in Mexico that are more exposed to automation in the U.S. through trade fared in exports and employment outcomes. The results show that an increase of one robot per thousand workers in the U.S. -- about twice the increase observed between 2004-2014 -- lowers growth in exports per worker from Mexico to the U.S. by 6.7 percent. Higher exposure to U.S. automation did not affect wage employment, nor manufacturing wage employment overall. Yet, the latter is the result of two counteracting forces. Exposure to U.S. automation reduced manufacturing wage employment in areas where occupations were initially more susceptible to being automated; but exposure increased manufacturing wage employment in other areas. Finally, the analysis also finds negative impacts of exposure to local automation on local labor market outcomes.