This course provides an overview of theoretical and empirical research in the area of personnel economics, i.e. the economic analysis of human resources. The course is useful not only for those interested in personnel research, but also for those who intend to focus on other business research areas in which individual incentives play an important role.
The program includes both theoretical and empirical papers. On the theory side, we study several variants of the principal-agent model that are useful to understand how incentives aect the organization of the workplace, particularly the aspects related to pay determination and job assignments. We also study other more recent theoretical models. On the empirical side, we study how the various theoretical predictions have been tested, discussing data and estimation issues. Specifically, the topics covered in the program are:
1. Economics and human resource management
2. Task assignment models with perfect information
3. The multi-task principal-agent model
4. Empirical evidence on performance pay
5. Delegation and incentives
6. Teamwork and social interactions