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POPNET Connects with Lőrincz László

14 December 2021 , 10:00 11:00 CET

The role of skills in local and global coworker networks

Social connections that reach distant places are advantageous for individuals, firms and cities, providing access to new skills and knowledge. However, systematic evidence on how firms build global knowledge access is still lacking. In this paper, we analyse how global work connections relate to differences in the skill composition of employees within companies and local industry clusters. We gather survey data from 10% of workers in a local industry in Sweden, and complement this with digital trace data to map co-worker networks and skill composition. This unique combination of data and features allows us to quantify global connections of employees and measure the degree of skill similarity and skill relatedness to co-workers. We find that workers with extensive local networks typically have skills related to those of others in the region and to those of their co-workers. Workers with more global ties typically bring in less related skills to the region. These results provide new insights into the composition of skills within knowledge-intensive firms by connecting the geography of network contacts to the diversity of skills accessible through them.

About Lőrincz László

László Lőrincz is a Sociologist (Ph.D) at NETI Lab at Corvinus University, and ANet Lab at Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies. He joined the Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies in 2013, after working in the government, and in the private sector. He works at Corvinus University since 2016. His research includes adoption and collapse of online social networks, and network aspects of labor mobility and migration. His work was published in Social Networks, Journal of Technology Transfer and Applied Network Science.