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Jyrki Ali-Yrkkö, Reda Cherif, Fuad Hasanov, Natalia Kuosmanen, and Mika Pajarinen
Do workers hired from superstar tech-firms contribute to better firm performance? To address this question, we analyze the effects of tacit knowledge spillovers from Nokia in the context of a quasi-natural experiment in Finland, the closure of Nokia’s mobile device division in 2014 and the massive labor movement it implied. We apply a two-stage difference-in-differences approach with heterogeneous treatment to estimate the causal effects of hiring former Nokia employees. Our results provide new evidence supporting the positive causal role of former Nokia workers on firm performance. The evidence of the positive spillovers on firms is particularly strong in terms of employment and value added.
Jyrki Ali-Yrkkö, Reda Cherif, Fuad Hasanov, Natalia Kuosmanen, and Mika Pajarinen

, formerly the world’s largest mobile phone manufacturer and the flagship of the Finnish technology industry, provides not only a fascinating empirical case, but in fact, an ideal setting to study knowledge spillovers in the context of a superstar tech-firm. Comparing firms that hire former Nokia workers vs. firms that hire other workers allows us to identify Nokia-specific spillovers. During the past decades, Nokia invested heavily in R&D. For instance, its R&D activities conducted in Finland in 2008 were approximately 49 percent of total business sector R&D expenditure

Jyrki Ali-Yrkkö, Reda Cherif, Fuad Hasanov, Natalia Kuosmanen, and Mika Pajarinen

Copyright Page © 2021 International Monetary Fund WP/21/258 IMF Working Paper Institute for Capacity Development Knowledge Spillovers From Superstar Tech-Firms: The Case of Nokia Prepared by Jyrki Ali-Yrkkö, Reda Cherif, Fuad Hasanov, Natalia Kuosmanen, Mika Pajarinen 1 Authorized for distribution by Valerie Cerra October 2021 IMF Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to encourage debate . The views expressed in IMF Working Papers are those of the author(s) and do not