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Convergence to the managerial frontier, Volume 1
Author:Maloney, William F.; Sarrias, Mauricio; Country:World;
Date Stored:2014/03/27Document Date:2014/03/01
Document Type:Policy Research Working PaperSubTopics:Economic Theory & Research; Microfinance; Labor Policies; Labor Markets; Investment and Investment Climate
Language:EnglishRegion:The World Region
Report Number:WPS6822Collection Title:Policy Research working paper ; no. WPS 6822
Volume No:1  

Summary: Using detailed survey data on management practices, this paper uses recent advances in unconditional quantile analysis to study the changes in the within country distribution of management quality associated with country convergence to the managerial frontier. It then decomposes the contribution of potential explanatory factors to the distributional changes. The United States emerges as the frontier country, not because of better management on average, but because its best firms are far better than those of its close competitors. Part of the process of convergence to the frontier across the development process represents a trimming of the left tail, much is movement of the central mass and, for rich countries, it is actually the best firms that lag the frontier benchmark. Among potential explanatory variables that may drive convergence, ownership and human capital appear critical, the former especially for poorer countries and that latter for richer countries suggesting that the mechanics of convergence change across the process. These variables lose their explanatory power as firm and average country management quality rises. Hence, once in the advanced country range, the factors that improve management quality are less easy to document and hence influence.

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