Strong Demand, Limited Supply, and Rising Prices: The Economics of Pandemic-Era Housing

The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland regularly surveys a broad cross-section of businesses in the region it serves and convenes business advisory councils in eight of the region’s major metropolitan areas. The information collected through these surveys and conversations points to trends that are not yet apparent in the data and fills gaps in researchers’ understanding of our region’s economy. The information is helpful to Federal Reserve policymakers during their discussions about the nation’s monetary policy. Anecdotes herein have been edited for length and clarity.

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Regional Governance: Begriffe, Wirkungszusammenhänge und Evaluationsansätze

The term governance describes structures and processes for the intentional steering of collective societal matters, typically addressed in concurrence by actors of state, economy and civil society. In the German-speaking community, the term “regional governance”, which corresponds to „local governance” in the English language, is well-established in the spatial sciences. The purpose of this work is to display and newly systematize the state of knowledge about regional governance. Therefore, possibilities for empirical research as well as restrictions for impact analyses are elaborated. Up to now, there is no common and generally acknowledged definition of governance. To enable a clea..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

An exploratory analysis of housing and the distribution of COVID-19 in Sweden

The impact of COVID-19 on various aspects of our life is evident. Proximity and close contact with individuals infected with the virus, and as well as the extent of such contact, contribute to the intensity of the spread of the virus. Healthy and infected household members, who both require sanctuary and quarantine space, come into proximate and extended contact in housing. In other words, housing and living conditions can impact the health of occupants and the spread of COVID-19. This study investigates the relationship between housing characteristics and variations in the spread of COVID-19 per capita across Sweden's 290 municipalities. For this purpose, we have used the number of infected..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Effects of residential push-pull on tenants' intention to relocate from larger megacities: Evidence from a Beijing, China survey

Tenants' residential relocation always presents diverse space-temporal tendencies and is highly influenced by institutional, socio-economic, and subjective factors in China. This paper aims to construct a relocation intention (RI) model and estimate the effects of its push-pull factors, including the household's registration system (hukou), homeownership status, and residential dissatisfaction. The empirical research relies on a questionnaire survey of 2,187 tenants conducted in 2019 in Beijing, China. Our findings confirm that non-local hukou status significantly pushes female and unmarried tenants to relocate, and non-local homeownership noticeably pulls male and married tenants' relocatio..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

The drivers of SME innovation in the regions of the EU

European Union (EU) innovation policies have for long remained mostly research driven. The fundamental goal has been to achieve a rate of R&D investment of 3% of GDP. Small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) innovation, however, relies on a variety of internal sources —both R&D and non-R&D based— and external drivers, such as collaboration with other firms and research centres, and is profoundly influence by location and context. Given this multiplicity of innovation activities, this study argues that innovation policies fundamentally based on a place-blind increase of R&D investment may not deliver the best outcomes in regions where the capacity of SMEs is to benefit from R&D is limited...

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Real-World Simulations of Life with an Autonomous Vehicle Suggest Increased Mobility and Vehicle Travel

Fully autonomous vehicles are expected to have a profound effect on travel behavior. The technology will provide convenience and better mobility for many, allowing owners to perform other tasks while traveling, summon their vehicles from a distance, and send vehicles off to complete tasks without them. These travel behaviors could lead to increases in vehicle miles traveled that will have major implications for traffic congestion and pollution. To estimate the extent to which travel behavior will change, researchers and planners have typically relied on adjustments to existing travel simulations or on surveys asking people how they would change their behavior in a hypothetical autonomous veh..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Counterfactual Dissimilarity: Can Changes in Demographics and Income Explain Increased Racial Integration in U.S. Cities?

Urban areas in the U.S. have experienced important changes in racial/ethnic distributions over the last two decades. In the average urban area today black-white racial integration has increased by 10.6 percent between 1990 and 2010. Changes in racial and ethnic distributions and gentrification are often associated with changes in residents’ demographic characteristics, such as income, education and age. This paper applies a non-parametric spatial decomposition technique using complete (restricted-use) microdata files from the 1990 Decennial Long Form Census and 2008-2012 American Community Surveys to assess what portion of the changes in racial distributions can be attributed to chang..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Is the monocentric urban economic model still empirically relevant? Assessing urban econometric predictions in 192 cities on five continents

Despite a large body of work that developed over more than 60 years, and numerous applications in theoretical papers, the empirical knowledge accumulated on the monocentric urban model and its extensions remains limited. Using a unique dataset gathering spatially explicit data on rents, population densities, housing sizes, and transport times in neighborhoods inside 192 cities on all continents, we investigate on a systematic basis the empirical relevance of the key stylized facts predicted by this model. Some of these predictions appear extremely robust: cities are more spread out when they are richer, more populated, and when transportation or agricultural land is less costly, and 95\% of ..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

What Makes a Classmate a Peer?Examining Which Peers Matter in NYC Elementary Schools Abstract

We identify and estimate the effects of student-level social spillovers on standardized test performance in New York City (NYC) elementary schools. We leverage student demographic data to construct within classroom social networks based on shared student characteristics, such as a gender or ethnicity. Rather than aggregate shared characteristics into a single network matrix, we specify additively separate network matrices for each shared characteristic and estimate city-wide peer effects for each one. Conditional on sharing a classroom, we find that the most important student peer effects are shared ethnicity, gender, and primary language spoken at home. Identification of the model is discus..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

The Heterogeneous Impacts of Higher Education Institutions on Regional Firm Location: Evidence from the Swiss Universities of Applied Sciences

The empirical literature on knowledge spillovers provides evidence that higher education institutions (HEIs) have positive effects on regional firm location, i.e., the number of start-ups or firms located in a region. However, less is known about how HEIs in different fields of study impact regional firm location in different industries. To estimate effects on firm location in different industries, we exploit the establishment of universities of applied sciences (UASs)-bachelor degree-granting three-year HEIs in Switzerland-in different fields of study. We find that effects are heterogeneous and UASs specializing in "chemistry and life sciences" and "business, management, and services" are t..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Do workers share in firm success? Pass-through estimates for New Zealand

We study the extent to which firm financial performance is passed on to workers in the form of higher wages and the degree to which this pass-through has changed over the period 2002-2018. We use both value added per worker and a measure of quasi-rents as measures of financial performance. Value added per worker is the standard measure used internationally. Quasi-rents better approximate the resources available to be shared between workers and firms as it takes into account the rental cost of capital as well as the reservation wages of workers. We estimate the reservation wage bill for each firm using estimates from a two-way fixed-effect model. We estimate models similar to those typically ..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Towards a dynamic spatial microsimulation model for projecting Auckland’s spatial distribution of ethnic groups

In this paper we describe the development, calibration and validation of a dynamic spatial microsimulation model for projecting small area (area unit) ethnic populations in Auckland, New Zealand. The key elements of the microsimulation model are a module that projects spatial mobility (migration) within Auckland and between Auckland and the rest of the world, and a module that projects ethnic mobility. The model is developed and calibrated using 1996-2001 New Zealand Linked Census (i.e. longitudinal) data, and then projected forward to 2006. We then compare the results with the actual 2006 population. We find that in terms of indexes of overall residential sorting and ethnic diversity, our p..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

A sound environment: health effects of traffic noise mitigation

This study investigates the health effects of a nationwide program that provided noise mitigation to dwellings. The analysis uses hospitalization records and a difference-in- differences model that compares residents in treated homes to those with similar at- tributes in untreated homes. Results show that noise mitigation measures lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases by 10% after seven years, with effects driven by reduced risk of hypertension. Health effects are larger among the population exposed to higher baseline noise levels. These findings suggest that implementing similar noise mitigation measures will produce meaningful health benefits.

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Optimal frequency of public transport in a small city: examination of a simple method

This study identifies the welfare optimal frequency of a scheduled public transport service from a methodological perspective, exploring what methods are more suitable for the case of bus services in a small city. The study examines how well various versions of the square-root rule, including established and newly proposed versions, estimate the optimal bus frequencies in the case city of Uppsala, versus estimates generated by a more comprehensive partial equilibrium model. The results indicate that extending the square-root rule by including transfer time, as proposed here, is empirically important. Furthermore, the results indicate that the square-root rule, with this extension, can estima..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

School Starting Age and the choice of elementary schoolJulio Cáceres-Delpiano; Eugenio P. Giolito

Using administrative data for Chile, we study the impact of School Starting Age (SSA) on the characteristics of the school of rst enrollment. After addressing the usual concerns of endogeneity using minimum age requirements and an RD-design, we uncover gains associated with a delay of school entry at the start of the student's school life. SSA is associated withan enrollment in a school with an approximately 0.1 standard deviations higher average in standardized test scores, an increase of approximately 0.17 years in the average education of the peers' parents, and an increase of 4 percentage points in the probability of being enrolled in a private school. The heterogeneity analysis by paren..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

The impact of competition on expert's information disclosure: the case of real estate brokers

Competition can theoretically counter or reinforce tendency of experts to pass biased information to customers. Using data from an online company connecting real estate brokers with clients who want to sell their properties, we show that more competition or lower opportunity to collude induce brokers to raise their ini- tial price estimation by more than 3%. This is observed upstream, when experts appraise the property for sale. Competition partially prevents brokers from biais- ing downward evaluations, and is benecial to the client since it translates into a positive eect on listing and sale prices with no signicant eect on the time to sale.

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Skill-biased acquisitions? Human capital and target employee mobility in small technology firms

The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between acquisitions and mobility of knowledge workers and managers in small technology companies and how individual skills and capabilities moderate the relationship. Relying on the matched employer-employee data of the Swedish high-tech sectors from 2007 to 2015, we find that acquisitions increase the likelihood of employee departures, mainly in the form of switching to another employer, but that these acquisition effects are weaker for employees with technological competences. Moreover, we also find that managers, compared to other employees, are more likely to exit from the (national) labor market after acquisitions. Our result..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

How much do 15-year-olds learn over one year of schooling?

In 2020 and 2021, schooling, like many other aspects of life, has been heavily affected by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. During periods of school closure, education systems and schools have often been quick to organise remote support for home-based learning. But several observers have questioned the effectiveness of these schooling surrogates, either in general or for particular types of students. Initial data from national assessments confirm that the results of many students who experienced school closures (particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds) lag behind those of similar students in previous school years.Learning losses and gains are often compared to the typical learning..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Teacher Pension Enhancements and Staffing in an Urban School District

Many states enhanced benefits in teacher retirement plans during the 1990s. This paper examines the school staffing effects of one such enhancement in a major urban school district with mostly high poverty schools. Pension rule changes in 1999 for St. Louis public school teachers resulted in large increases in pension wealth for active teachers, as well as a powerful increase in “push” incentives for earlier retirement. Simple descriptive statistics on retirement patterns before and after the enhancements suggest much earlier retirement resulted. Shorter teaching spells imply a steady state with more teacher turnover and a larger share of novice teachers in classrooms. To better understa..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Spatial regression graph convolutional neural networks: A deep learning paradigm for spatial multivariate distributions

Geospatial artificial intelligence (GeoAI) has emerged as a subfield of GIScience that uses artificial intelligence approaches and machine learning techniques for geographic knowledge discovery. The non-regularity of data structures has recently led to different variants of graph neural networks in the field of computer science, with graph convolutional neural networks being one of the most prominent that operate on non- euclidean structured data where the numbers of nodes connections vary and the nodes are unordered. These networks use graph convolution - commonly known as filters or kernels - in place of general matrix multiplication in at least one of their layers. This paper suggests spa..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

The resiliency of school outcomes after the COVID-19 pandemic. Standardised test scores and inequality one year after long term school closures

Almost two years after the largest disruption of education in history, the question remains as to whether, and to what extent, school outcomes are resilient and inequality persists. To answer these questions, this paper exploits a unique panel data-set with standardised test scores and administrative data pertaining to the last year of primary education in the Flemish region of Belgium. For the subjects of native language (Dutch), math, science, social science and foreign language (French), exactly the same standardised tests were administered in 2019 (pre-pandemic), 2020 and 2021. Our empirical specification-cation captures (un)observed heterogeneity at school level, a time trend, and time-..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Building capacity for inclusive teaching: Policies and practices to prepare all teachers for diversity and inclusion

Classrooms have become increasingly diverse places where students from various backgrounds share their learning experiences. To promote inclusive school settings for all, building teacher capacity for inclusive teaching represents a key policy area. Education systems need to ensure that teachers are adequately prepared for inclusive teaching and supported throughout their career. Mechanisms to attract and retain a more diverse teaching body as well as to monitor and evaluate teacher preparation and work with respect to diversity and inclusion should also be developed. While teacher policies have increasingly addressed some of these areas, most education systems lack comprehensive capacity-bu..

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Rail freight transport in France. A new recovery plan, a new rail freight corridor but many uncertainties

Editorial

Urban and Real Estate Economics

Effects of business improvement districts on firm performance, place attractiveness, and urban safety

: Business improvement districts (BIDs) have emerged as possible solutions for the revitalization of urban areas characterized by economic decline. Using a difference-in differences model, we investigate the effects of a voluntary Swedish BID programme in five cities on firm performance, urban safety, and place attractiveness – both within and outside the BID. We find that the BID programme increased labour productivity for incumbent firms within the BID by 7.62%, mainly through an increase in revenues. However, the positive effect of the BID programme on firm performance is largely transitory, decreasing sharply during the third year and then becoming insignificant. We find no statistical..

Urban and Real Estate Economics