Data Science and Management

The team "Data Science and Management" provides support for WIFO's Research Groups in terms of data access and database maintenance as well as in the acquisition, processing, analysis and evaluation of large and complex data volumes. The high standards of WIFO's data quality and consistency play a crucial role in the excellence of WIFO's research work.

New technological developments enable both new methods for analysing large volumes of data as well as the creation of new data sets. WIFO sees this as an important opportunity for empirical economic research and evidence-based economic policy and therefore uses these new approaches both in its applied research projects as well as in its basic research.

Recent examples of the Data Science and Management team's work include the creation of a data set on complexity indicators (product space indicators). Additional complex data sets are the patent database of WIFO or the individual data of the labour market database of the Ministry of Social Affairs.

In addition to developing new data and analysis methods, the Data Science and Management team also supervises the WDS – WIFO-DatenSystem, which is also available to external users. The WDS imports and integrates data from various Austrian and international data sources in a homogenised form which are then prepared for use in scientific analyses and economic policy decisions.

 

Some examples for data visualisation

 

Publications

Members of the team

Georg Böhs

Peter Reschenhofer

Monographs, January 2019, 51 pages
EDV: Georg Böhs
Commissioned by: Chamber of Labour: Upper Austria
Study by: Austrian Institute of Economic Research
Online since: 25.01.2019 11:00
 
Psychische Erkrankungen bilden eine hohe Hürde für die Erwerbstätigkeit und sind eine der wichtigsten Ursachen von Invalidität. Ihre Bedeutung für das Krankenstandsgeschehen nahm längerfristig stark zu. Dieser Bericht befasst sich mit der Entwicklung und Verteilung psychisch bedingter Krankenstände in Oberösterreich in den Jahren 2005 bis 2016. Nach einem deutlichen Anstieg in den 2000er-Jahren gingen die Fehlzeiten aufgrund von psychischen Erkrankungen zwischen 2011 und 2016 leicht zurück. Dies war vor allem auf eine Verkürzung der durchschnittlichen Krankenstandsdauer zurückzuführen. Die Zahl der psychisch bedingten Krankenstandstage der Arbeitslosen war um ein Vielfaches höher als jene der Beschäftigten, sie folgte in ihrer Entwicklung über die Zeit aber einem ähnlichen Muster.
WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (539), 40 pages
Endbericht zum Jubiläumsfondsprojekt Nr. 15310 (Projektleitung: Helmut Mahringer) • EDV: Georg Böhs
Online since: 30.06.2017 0:00
Um Schwankungen des Arbeitskräftebedarfs zu begegnen, unterbrechen Betriebe zum Teil in Zeiten geringer Auslastung Dienstverhältnisse, um anschließend bei verbesserter Auftragslage dieselben Arbeitskräfte wieder einzustellen ("temporärer Layoff"). Der vorliegende Beitrag untersucht erstmals die kausalen Auswirkungen dieser personalpolitischen Flexibilisierungsstrategie auf die längerfristige Erwerbskarriere der betroffenen Arbeitskräfte. Der Fokus liegt dabei nicht auf saisonbedingten Beschäftigungsunterbrechungen, sondern auf temporären Layoffs zur Abfederung konjunkturbedingter Schwankungen des Arbeitskräftebedarfs. Gemäß einem kontrafaktischen Vergleich mit permanenten Arbeitsplätzen sind Personen infolge der Aufnahme eines Recall-Arbeitsplatzes mit temporärem Layoff in den folgenden sechs Jahren im Durchschnitt um 80 Tage weniger in Beschäftigung und um 74 Tage mehr in Arbeitslosigkeit. Dafür sind zum Teil unmittelbar die Beschäftigungsunterbrechungen bestimmend. Temporäre Layoffs wirken sich aber auch über den betreffenden Arbeitsplatz hinaus negativ auf die Integration in die Beschäftigung aus. Dies betrifft beide Geschlechter und eine große Zahl von Branchen. Die betroffenen Arbeitskräfte erhalten, wie die Forschungsergebnisse zeigen, keine höheren Löhne, um den Lohnausfall während des Layoff zu kompensieren und einen finanziellen Anreiz für das Warten auf eine Wiedereinstellung zu setzen ("kompensierende Lohndifferentiale").
Publications from the research programme "Austria 2025", May 2017, 90 pages
Study by: Austrian Institute of Economic Research
Online since: 26.05.2017 12:00
 
Die schwache Gesamtentwicklung der Einkommen aus unselbständiger Arbeit in den vergangenen fünfzehn Jahren war mit durch eine schwache Lohnentwicklung in einigen Teilsegmenten des Arbeitsmarktes bestimmt. In Österreich ist ein substanzieller und seit der Finanzmarkt- und Wirtschaftskrise 2009 steigender Anteil der Arbeitskräfte instabil beschäftigt. Für diese Personen entwickelten sich die Löhne erheblich ungünstiger als für die stabil beschäftigten Arbeitskräfte. Offensichtlich greifen für diese Personen die in den Kollektivverträgen ausverhandelten Lohnerhöhungen weniger, weil sie immer wieder neu in ein Beschäftigungsverhältnis eintreten. Ausländische Arbeitskräfte, insbesondere jene aus dem östlichen EU-Ausland, sind besonders häufig instabil beschäftigt und niedrig entlohnt. Ihr vermehrter Zustrom infolge der Arbeitsmarkt-Ostöffnung dämpfte daher die Lohnentwicklung. Der Unterschied in der Lohndynamik zwischen stabil und instabil Beschäftigten war allerdings für inländische Arbeitskräfte noch stärker ausgeprägt als für ausländische.

This paper examines whether PageRank algorithms are a valid instrument for the analysis of technical progress in specific technological fields by means of patent citation data. It provides evidence for patent data in biotechnology. Recent literature has been critical with regard to the use of PageRank for the analysis of scientific citation networks. The results reported in this paper indicate, however, that with some minor adaptations and careful interpretation of the results the algorithm can be used to capture some important stylised facts of technical progress and the importance of single patents relatively well especially if compared to indicators based on direct inward citations only.
Monographs, August 2015, 183 pages
This study has been prepared for the Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME), under Specific Contract ENT-SME-14-F-S107-SI2-698839 implementing the Framework Service Contract ENTR/300/PP/2013/FC-WIFO on "Studies in the Area of European Competitiveness" coordinated by the Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO; coordinator: Andreas Reinstaller). This service contract is financed by the EU Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and SMEs (COSME).
Commissioned by: European Commission
Study by: Austrian Institute of Economic Research
 
The aim of this study is to analyse the development of new industrial specialisations and the process of export diversification both at the country and the regional level for the EU countries over time. It examines to what extent these processes show path dependent properties, whether persistent development trajectories can be shifted in order to avoid structural traps and what role related and unrelated diversification play for the economic performance of regions. Overall, the results of this report and its policy implications underscore that Smart Specialisation policies require a smooth coordination of a larger set of diverse policy measures that take into account both the local context and all the involved players rather than a perfect setup of single policies. In particular, the educational system, specialisation patterns in research and innovation, and foreign direct investments play a key role in diversification processes and should be a constitutive element of Smart Specialisation policies.

Monographs, August 2015, 183 pages
This study has been prepared for the Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME), under Specific Contract ENT-SME-14-F-S107-SI2-698839 implementing the Framework Service Contract ENTR/300/PP/2013/FC-WIFO on "Studies in the Area of European Competitiveness" coordinated by the Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO; coordinator: Andreas Reinstaller). This service contract is financed by the EU Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and SMEs (COSME).
Commissioned by: European Commission
Study by: Austrian Institute of Economic Research
 
The aim of this study is to analyse the development of new industrial specialisations and the process of export diversification both at the country and the regional level for the EU countries over time. It examines to what extent these processes show path dependent properties, whether persistent development trajectories can be shifted in order to avoid structural traps and what role related and unrelated diversification play for the economic performance of regions. Overall, the results of this report and its policy implications underscore that Smart Specialisation policies require a smooth coordination of a larger set of diverse policy measures that take into account both the local context and all the involved players rather than a perfect setup of single policies. In particular, the educational system, specialisation patterns in research and innovation, and foreign direct investments play a key role in diversification processes and should be a constitutive element of Smart Specialisation policies.
WWWforEurope: Welfare, Wealth and Work for Europe, August 2015, 58 pages
Supported by: Österreichische Forschungsförderungsgesellschaft mbH – Austrian Agency for International Cooperation in Education and Research – OeAD-GmbH
Commissioned by: European Commission
Study by: Project team WWWforEurope
Online since: 13.08.2015 0:00
The development of "green" industries is commonly seen as a necessary even though not sufficient condition for the transition towards ecologically sustainable paths of economic development. It is also a recurrent view that proactive and successful policy action in this domain will not only promote sustainable development but also secure competitive advantage of successful countries in these industries. However, a complex constellation of path-dependencies in systems of production and (negative) externalities constrain the emergence and expansion of environmental technologies. This paper presents evidence that path-dependencies in systems of production have a dual role in the development of new industries. They are not only a source of structural lock-in, but also a potential starting point for new developments. The paper shows that factors causing path dependence in systems of production are also an important source of competitiveness both for all traded commodities and for environmental technology industries. Hence, policies supporting the emergence of industries producing environmental technologies should try to exploit this mechanism. Drawing on this evidence a counterfactual analysis is carried out to investigate potential trajectories of development of the EU 28 countries in the environmental technologies. The results indicate that some countries that up to recent times have been pioneers in environmental technologies may lose their strong position in these technologies. In other countries instead new strengths in environmental technologies have the potential to emerge, as some environmental technologies can draw on untraded interdependencies that have not been brought to full fruition so far.
Monographs, June 2013
Commissioned by: European Commission, DG Enterprise and Industry
Study by: Austrian Institute of Economic Research
Online since: 05.06.2013 0:00
 
This study examines the development of the productive structures of the EU using international trade data and methods from complexity theory referred to as the "product space" approach. The results show that the set of products for which a country has already a comparative advantage in international trade is a strong predictor for the type of products in which it will develop a comparative advantage and obtain significant world market shares. This implies that the development of the productive structures of a country is a highly cumulative process and any upgrading is necessarily deeply rooted in current capabilities and industrial specialisation. Complementary factors and competencies have to be built up. This makes it more difficult for countries to change their productive structures. In the light of the results of this study the smart specialisation strategy which the European Commission pursues in its cohesion policy for the years 2014-2020 seems to be well placed to foster the competitiveness of the European Union in general and the European regions in particular. Some caveats however apply.