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SERC/Urban and Spatial Programme Discussion Paper
Flexible Employment and Cross-Regional Adjustment
Ioannis Kaplanis and Vassilis Monastiriotis
January 2012
Paper No' SERCDP0100:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: R11; R23; J08; J61

Tags: employment flexibility; regional migration; labour market adjustment

Employment flexibility is commonly associated to greater labour mobility and thus faster cross-regional adjustments. The literature however offers very little hard evidence on this and quite limited theoretical guidance. This paper examines empirically the relationship between employment flexibility and cross-regional adjustment (migration) at the regional and local levels in the UK. Employment flexibility is associated to higher labour mobility (but only at a rather localised scale) and at the same time seems to reduce the responsiveness of migration to unemployment. This suggest that rising flexibility may be linked to higher persistence in spatial disparities, as intra-regional adjustments are strengthened while extraregional adjustments weakened.