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The Impact of Mobile Phones on Change in Employment Status in South Africa

Authors
  • Grzybowski, Lukasz
  • Patel, Zubair Maghmood
Type
Published Article
Journal
Review of Network Economics
Publisher
De Gruyter
Publication Date
Aug 15, 2023
Volume
22
Issue
2
Pages
85–114
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1515/rne-2022-0008
Source
De Gruyter
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

In this paper we analyse whether having a mobile phone impacts chances of getting employed. We use five waves of panel data from the National Income Dynamic Survey (NIDS), which was conducted in South Africa between years 2008 and 2017. In the estimation we include a vector of observable individual and household characteristics and account for unobserved heterogeneity amongst individuals. The estimation results suggest that mobile phone ownership has a positive impact on the change in employment status from unemployed to employed. On the other hand, ownership of a computer by a household and computer literacy do not increase the likelihood of getting employed. The average probability of becoming employed increases from 54.2 % when no one among unemployed adults has a mobile phone to 57.4 % when all of them have a mobile phone, which is an increase of 5.9 %.

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