Lab Labor: What can Labor Economists Learn from the Lab?
111 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2010
This paper surveys the contributions of laboratory experiments to labor economics. We begin with a discussion of methodological issues: why (and when) is a lab experiment the best approach; how do laboratory experiments compare to field experiments; and what are the main design issues? We then summarize the substantive contributions of laboratory experiments to our understanding of principal-agent interactions, social preferences, union-firm bargaining, arbitration, gender differentials, discrimination, job search, and labor markets more generally.
Keywords: personnel economics, principal-agent theory, laboratory experiments, labor economics
JEL Classification: C9, J0
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