Hello. I'm Fabien Petit.

Research Fellow at University College London, Centre for Education Policy and Equalising Opportunities. I am interested in Labor Economics, Innovation Economics and Macroeconomics.

My research focuses on labor markets, technologies, skills, generations and inequality.

🚨📢 Latest news:

Research CV


"Research is an organized method for keeping you reasonably dissatisfied with what you have." - Charles F. Kettering.

đź“° Publications

Abstract: The increase in employment polarization observed in several high-income economies has coincided with a reduction in inter-generational mobility. This paper argues that the disappearance of middling jobs can drive changes in mobility, notably by removing a stepping-stone towards high-paying occupations for those from less well-off family backgrounds. Using data for two British cohorts we examine how the occupational outcomes of children depend on both initial occupations and occupational upgrading during their careers. We find that transitions across occupations are key for mobility and that the effect of parental income on those transitions has become stronger over time. Moreover, the impact of parental income increased the most in the regions where the share of middling employment fell the most, suggesting that greater employment polarization may be one of the factors behind the observed decline in mobility.

đź“ť Working papers

Heterogeneous adjustments of labor markets to automation technologies

with Florencia Jaccoud and Tommaso Ciarli | CESifo Working Paper

Abstract: This paper examines the labor market adjustments to four automation technologies (i.e. robots, communication technology, information technology, and software/database) in 227 regions across 22 European countries from 1995 to 2017. By constructing a measure of technology penetration, we estimate changes in regional employment and wages affected by automation technologies along with the reallocation of workers between sectors. We find that labor market adjustments to automation technologies differ according to i) the technology involved, ii) the sector of penetration, iii) the sectoral composition of the region, and iv) the region's technological capabilities. These adjustments are driven largely by the reallocation of low-paid workers across sectors.

Spillover effects across values

Working Paper

Abstract: Values characterize preferences that themselves shape individuals’ decisions explaining future gaps in economic outcomes. I study the dynamics of values when values are inter-dependent and shocked by life events and I show that spillover effects across values do exist. Individuals choose to identify with a group with which they share values, but there are psychological costs to have values that are not consistent with those of the group. Whenever an event occurs in someone’s life—bringing new information—this may change some of her values. This shock can drive the individual to identify with a new group if the shocked values have taken her too far from her previous group. By identifying with the new group, she changes all her values—including not initially affected values—toward those of that new group. By changing values that are not affected by the shock, life events generate spillover effects across values.

Inter-generational conflict and the declining labor share

Working Paper

Abstract: The coincidence in timing between the start of the decline of the labor share and the entry of the baby-boomers cohort into adulthood—entering the labor market and reaching voting age—has received no attention. I argue that the observed shift away from labor toward capital is a response to changes in labor market institutions endogenously determined by the age structure of the population through voting. The size of the boomer cohort gives them large political weight and allows them to change public policy in their favor when they are young and then old. These institutional changes have consequences for the wage bargaining to which firms respond by substituting labor with capital to thwart workers’ appropriation of the rents. I develop a model which links public policy to wage bargaining and calibrate it for France and the US. Numerical simulations can replicate the decline of the labor share and labor market dynamics.

🔜 Work in progress

Revealing semantics: Exposure of industries and occupations to emerging technologies

with Ekaterina Prytkova, Deyu Li, Sugat Chaturvedi and Tommaso Ciarli | Draft available upon request | Presentation (September 2023) |
Best Paper Award at the 2nd CESifo / ifo Junior Workshop on Big Data

Investment cycles in automation technologies and labor markets: Evidence from European regions

with Tommaso Ciarli, Teresa Farinha, Florencia Jaccoud and Maria Savona | Draft in preparation

Firms’ adoption of emerging technologies: Evidence from online job ads

with Ekaterina Prytkova | Data analysis

Generational inertia in skill adoption

Theoretical model derivation

✏️ Other writing

Workshop and Seminars organizations

đź’¬ Junior Research Day

2023 Junior Research Day — Autumn London Meeting

co-organized with Elodie Andrieu, Olimpia Cutinelli-Rendina and Meng Yu Ngov | King's College London | Program

đź’¬ IFS-UCL-IoE Human Capital and Labour Markets Seminar Series

2023 Fall Edition

co-organized with Monica Costa Dias, Claire Crawford, Lindsey Macmillan, Imran Rasul and Imran Tahir | Institute for Fiscal Studies | Program


"A good teacher is like a candle – it consumes itself to light the way for others." - Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

🔜 Experience

Advanced Microeconomics I

Teaching Assistant for Roberta Ziparo

BSc Mathematics and Economics (2019-2021)

Advanced Microeconomics II

Teaching Assistant for Roberta Ziparo

BSc Mathematics and Economics (2019-2022)

Macroeconomics I

Teaching Assistant for CĂ©line Poilly

BSc Economics and Law (2020-2022)
BSc Economics and Management (2019-2022)

International Monetary Mechanisms

Teaching Assistant for Gilbert Bougi

BSc Business and International Trade Management (Spring 2019)

Mathematics I

Teaching Assistant for Laurent Bruasse and Maxime Gilly

BSc Economics and Law (2019-2021)

Mathematics II

Teaching Assistant for Laurent Bruasse

BSc Economics and Management (Spring 2019)

Contact me

I would love to receive other emails than spam. For real.
Do not hesitate to send me an e-mail to f.petit@ucl.ac.uk

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