The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

Labour Economics

  • Richard B. Freeman
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-349-95189-5_897

Abstract

Labour economics studies the demand and supply for the most important factor of production, human beings. Since the days of Marshall and indeed of Smith, if not earlier, economists have recognized that one cannot analyse the market for labour, without taking account of such issues as social relations of production, long-term contractual arrangements, problems of effort and motivation, as well as institutions like unions and internal labour markets, which differentiate the labour market from a bourse. For many years recognition of these factors made labour economics an area in which economic theory was applied sparingly and in which institutional analyses dominated.

Keywords

Affirmative action Becker, G. Comparable worth Decentralized wage-setting Dual labour markets Efficient contracts Elasticities of complementarity Elasticity of substitution Forecasting Harris–Todaro hypothesis Human capital Immigration and the city Internal labour markets Labour demand Labour economics Labour market institutions Labour supply Layoffs Long-term employment Mincer, J. Minimum wages Negative income tax Period of production Personnel economics Profit sharing Search models of unemployment Trade unions Unemployment Wage differentials Wage dispersion Wage rigidity 
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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard B. Freeman
    • 1
  1. 1.