The Spillover Effects of Labor Regulations on the Structure of Earnings and Employment: Evidence from Occupational Licensing | Journal of Public Economics


This paper measures how labor regulations affect the structure of earnings and employment in other occupations in the context of occupational licensing. Using a state boundary discontinuity design, I estimate the market spillovers of licensing on other occupations with similar skills, which I classify using hierarchical clustering techniques on skills data from O*NET. I find evidence of negative earnings and employment spillovers, with the largest earnings effects concentrated among women, black, and foreign-born Hispanic workers. These effects lead to greater earnings inequality. The results are most consistent with licensing changing skill- and industry-specific labor demand and with a monopsony model where licensing increases search costs and reduces workers’ outside options.

Journal of Public Economics
Samuel Dodini
Postdoctoral Fellow in Labor Economics

My broad research interests include empirical explorations of the economics of labor markets, incorporating insights from behavioral economics, occupational licensing, monopsony power, education, public finance, and urban economics.