We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more

Labor Economics

Principles in Practice

First Edition

Dr Kenneth J. McLaughlin

Publication Date - December 2015

ISBN: 9780199356034

528 pages
7-1/2 x 9-1/4 inches

In Stock

Retail Price to Students: $138.95

Introduces students to the principles of labor economics by combining analysis of real data with concrete examples, thought-provoking applications, and plenty of practice


Labor Economics: Principles in Practice provides a concise, tightly integrated, and engaging exploration of labor economics. Focusing on core principles and immersing students in real data from the Current Population Survey (CPS), Ken McLaughlin lays out a clear analytical framework for thinking about labor-market issues and policies. The book's entire presentation-- from the conversational tone to the practice questions within each section-makes labor economics highly accessible to more students.


  • Focuses on the core principles of labor economics to give students a well-balanced theoretical and empirical introduction to the field
  • Weaves data into the narrative rather than relegating evidence to references in footnotes, presenting patterns and interpreting evidence from the Current Population Survey (CPS) and other interesting data sets
  • Incorporates unique practice-along-the-way questions and end-of-chapter problems for continuous self-study, review, and homework
  • Anchors the tightly integrated package of student and instructor resources, all of which are written by the author

About the Author(s)

Kenneth J. McLaughlin is an Associate Professor and master teacher of microeconomics and labor economics at City University of New York. He received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago and has taught at the University of Rochester, University of Chicago's Graduate School of Business, and Columbia University.


"I am delighted with the straightforward clarity of the writing. It is pitched just right: direct and plain but not condescending. The use of active tense and the tendency not to let sentences run on compares well with my current text."--Michael Brun, Illinois State University

"The book gives a good grounding on the basics of labor economics, focusing on the student's grasp of those basics. Applications and examples are a key and integral part of exposition of the theory. Explanations are clear and precise. A particularly exciting aspect of the text is that it immerses students in data and data analysis from the beginning. The author introduces the students to the CPS and statistical methods for testing economic hypotheses and then the CPS is returned to in most chapters to connect the student to real economic research and to integrate the topics. Specifically, the text starts with a basic wage regression and as each topic is covered another variable(s) is added to the right hand side."--Gerald Marschke, SUNY Albany

Table of Contents

    Preface to the Student
    Preface to the Instructor

    PART I

    1 Introduction to Labor Economics
    1.1 Tipping Busboys
    1.2 Labor Economics
    1.3 Economic Detection
    1.4 Data
    1.5 Empirical Methods
    1.6 For Your Toolbox

    2 Labor Markets
    2.1 Competitive Labor Market
    2.2 Government Controls
    2.3 Multiple Competitive Labor Markets
    2.4 Monopsony

    3 Labor Supply
    3.1 Motivating Evidence
    3.2 Hours of Work
    3.3 Applications
    3.4 Whether to Work
    3.5 Family Labor Supply and Home Production
    3.6 Market Labor Supply

    4 Labor Demand
    4.1 Short-Run Labor Demand
    4.2 Long-Run Labor Demand
    4.3 Market Labor Demand


    5 Attributes of the Job

    5.1 Market for Work on Dirty Jobs
    5.2 Model of Compensating Wage Differentials
    5.3 Workday and Job Choice
    5.4 Employee Benefits

    6 Schooling
    6.1 Schooling as an Investment in Human Capital
    6.2 Estimating the Rate of Return to Schooling
    6.3 Schooling as a Signal of Ability
    6.4 Application: Schooling and the Workweek

    7 Training, Turnover, and Migration
    7.1 General Training
    7.2 Applications
    7.3 Specific Training
    7.4 Matching Models of Turnover
    7.5 Migration

    8 Discrimination
    8.1 Measuring Wage Gaps
    8.2 Identifying the Effects of Discrimination
    8.3 Modeling Discrimination
    8.4 Can Discrimination Survive in the Long Run?
    8.5 U.S. Anti-Discrimination Policy

    9 Unions
    9.1 Historical Context
    9.2 Models of Unions
    9.3 Applications

    10 Wage Distribution
    10.1 Measuring the Distribution of Wages
    10.2 Economic Models of Wage Inequality
    10.3 Application: Widening Distribution of Wages


    11 Compensation Strategies
    11.1 Introduction to Compensation
    11.2 Performance Pay
    11.3 Efficiency Wage and the Threat of Dismissal
    11.4 Compensation of Chief Executive Officers

    12 Unemployment
    12.1 Disequilibrium Unemployment
    12.2 Steady-State Unemployment
    12.3 Job Search
    12.4 Applications
    12.5 Unemployment in the Macroeconomy


Related Titles

The Economics of Women, Men, and Work

The Economics of Women, Men, and Work

Eighth edition

Francine D. Blau and Anne E. Winkler

Request examination copy

Understanding the Gender Gap