Abstract

This study deals with the composition of corporate boards and examines the impact of independent (outside) and inside directors. We analyze the effect of independent and representative board members on firm performance and shareholder protection. Overseeing the CEO to ensure value maximization is one of the key functions of boards. Hence, boards appear as a protective mechanism that protects shareholder rights. With this reasoning regulators promote independent directors at boardrooms. The literature corroborates the notion that independent directors are instrumental in mitigating agency problems. At the same time, increasing worker representation has been considered as a mechanism to contain, or balance the power of controlling shareholders for big companies. In Norway, employee representation in boards has been promoted by the legislation long before. Employee representatives have insider information about the companies and leaves little room for executives to mislead the board. For companies that adopt the gender balance law, and change their boards, we look at the impact of outsiders. We take the insiders into consideration by controlling for the board ownership, and use the incremental effect of female additions to the board as variable capturing the outsider impact. We examine the explanatory power of outsiders at board over the value and tax returns of the company. Conversely, we try to see how the employee representatives are related with firm fundamentals. For the companies that change their organizational form, we gauge the differential impact of employee representation when we control for other factors. The key posits are that employee representatives can protect employee rights, alleviate layoffs, and moderate the executive pay. This view has found audience among policy makers recently. Preliminary results demonstrate that increasing outside and independent directors have a positive effect on the firm value. Furthermore, independent board directors are essential in promoting efficient outcomes. Further, they are instrumental in returning the value to shareholders, limiting the executive compensation, and curbing the relative tax burden.

Abstract

In this paper, we examine citizen and consumer attitudes towards, and preferences for, private and public goods from organic agriculture in Norway. The study is based on a survey among 939 Norwegians. The results show that in the role as citizens, the respondents hold a moderate belief in the superiority of organic farming concerning the production of public goods, but they give relatively low priority to prompting organic farming compared to other agricultural policy goals. In the role as consumers (choice experiment), the respondents were willing to pay for several attributes of organic food. Only 6% of the respondents buy organic food as often as they can. The most important reasons for buying organic food are health and environmental concerns, while animal welfare has little importance. Lack of perceived superiority regarding health benefits, taste, safety and environment are important reasons for not consuming (more) organic food among those who rarely or never buy organic food.

Abstract

This paper shows that a simple scheme of non-linear taxes coupled with tradable pollution permits can secure the .rst best outcome even in absence of information about abatement costs. Evidence of the existence of a Pareto optimal Nash equilibrium is given. Di¤erential system theory and stochastic approximation are used to prove that the outcome is globally and locally stable. Equilibrium is reached after repeated play. At each round agents make myopic steps and form local approximations, restricting their attention to one variable at any stage. The same procedure also applies also when stochastic elements are involved.

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Abstract

Working paper 2012-1 presents the outcome of the project “Miljø- og klimaanalyse for norsk landbruk og matsektor” (Analysis of Environmental and Climate-related aspects of Norwegian agri-food sector). The project has been led by NILF in cooperation with MiSA and John Hille. The objective has been to develop methodological guidelines for comprehensive assessments of measures aimed at relieving environmental and climatic stresses from Norwegian food production and consumption.

Abstract

This ESEE 2011 conference paper examines attitudes to private and public goods and bads from agriculture in Norway with a particular focus on organic agriculture. The issue is based on a survey among 939 Norwegians. The results show that the respondents strongly value public attributes of agriculture like a vivid countryside and cultural landscapes. Almost 60 percent of the sample emphasise that the government should aim to increase the production and sale of organic food. Respondents’ behaviour as consumers were investigated by collecting and analysing data that indicate which conditions respondents find most important when they buy milk, eggs, carrots and ketchup. Important conditions were taste, fresh, produced in Norway and no use of pesticides or fertilizers. The most important reasons for buying organic food were avoidance of pesticides, health and environmental concerns.

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Abstract

We examine the origins and outcome of entrepreneurship on the basis of exceptionally comprehensive Norwegian matched worker–firm–owner data. In contrast to most existing studies, our notion of entrepreneurship not only comprises self-employment, but also employment in partly self-owned limited liability companies. Based on this extended entrepreneurship concept, we find that entrepreneurship tends to be profitable. It also raises income variability, but the most successful quartile gains much more than the least successful quartile loses. Key determinants of the decision to become an entrepreneur are occupational qualifications, family resources, gender, and work environments. Individual unemployment encourages, while aggregate unemployment discourages, entrepreneurship.

Abstract

This article considers the use of a hybrid instrument to regulate .sheries, comparing this instrument with quantity control and linear taxation in regards to economic yields and the risk of resource deple- tion. Hybrid instruments have shown to be central in studies with static models but have hardly ever been explored in the context of dy- namic .sheries. A numerical example concerned with a single-species demersal .shery where the stock estimate is uncertain indicates that a combination of price and quantity control in the form of a strictly convex tax on landings is clearly superior to quantity control. When cost uncertainty is involved, it can also prove more e¢ cient than the price instrument.

Abstract

This paper presents a simple system for efficient regulation under asymmetric information. Each firm’s income is controlled by a tax that depends on the firm’s own output and on a parameter construed as a share permit. These "shares of total expected output" lower a firm’s tax burden and are acquired in a competitive market. By employing this scheme, the planner only requires knowledge of marginal damage to induce the first-best outcome. Relative to a traditional cap-and-trade approach the system increases expected social welfare. If incentives for strategic behavior in the market exist, their impact may be scaled down.