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Deconstructing Job Search Behavior

McConnell Seminar in Applied Economics 2017-2018

room C-6070-9 (U. of Montreal, Pavillon Lionel-Groulx, 3150, rue Jean-Brillant) 

Organizers : Michael Huberman (U. of Montreal) and Baris Kaymak (U. of Montreal)



In this paper, we empirically investigate job search, specifically how a number of theoretically relevant variables impact behavior in an online setting. We take advantage of an unusually rich proprietary dataset from a Chilean job board to document and interpret a number of facts. To estimate our model, we use a novel network technique to determine ad sets that are relevant to applicants. We focus on how application behavior is influenced by (1) several demographics such as gender, age, and marital status, (2) alignment between applicants wage expectations and job ad wage offers, (3) applicant fit into job ad requirements in terms of education and experience, (4) timing variables, including unemployment duration, job tenure (for on-the-job searchers), and vacancy duration. We relate our results to a  variety of theoretical models and discuss how our findings can be used to discipline current (and future) job search models.

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