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“Whom you know” and labour market outcomes: An empirical investigation in Ghana.

Baah-Boateng, William and Twum, Eric and Twumasi Baffour, Priscilla (2019): “Whom you know” and labour market outcomes: An empirical investigation in Ghana. Published in: Ghanaian Journal of Economics , Vol. 7, No. 1 (December 2019): pp. 1-20.

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Abstract

The relevance of social networks sometimes referred to in Ghana as “whom you know” in the job acquisition process and its effect on labour market outcomes (wages, job satisfaction and job tenure) have been highlighted by a number of studies. Most of these studies have concentrated largely on monetary post-hire outcomes with limited research on non-pecuniary aspects. Using a cox proportional hazard model to analyse a survey of 150 formal sector workers in the services sector in Accra, the study observes that first, jobs acquired through the help of workers’ friends and relatives did not last long. The first jobs could be a stepping-stone for better jobs. This effect is however not statistically significant after controlling for individual and firm-level covariates. Conclusions are however made with caution due to the small sample size and the nature of respondents’ majority of whom are highly educated and relatively younger. Future research can explore further social networks and labour markets particularly in Africa where familiarity and identical ethnic bonds are visible and stronger.

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