News & events


Social networks in job searching

23 October 2012
12:30 - 13:30

Date : 23 October 2012

Time : 12:30 – 13:30

Presented by Dr Paulo Santos joined the Department of Economics at Monash University Australia

Although social networks are known to play an important role in job search, their impact on labour market outcomes, namely wages, is still disputed. This paper presents a simple model of the “referrer’s dilemma” to suggest that individuals with low ability may still be referred to vacancies, in particular if they are socially close to the referrers, triggering wage penalties in some cases. Using data from the Cape Area Panel Study in South Africa, the paper investigates the effect of job search method (in particular, the use of social networks) and social distance (the use of household members and relatives versus friends) on wages for three groups, Black African, Coloured and White youth.

Dr Paulo Santos joined the Department of Economics at Monash in 2011, where is currently a Lecturer. He completed his PhD in Applied Economics at Cornell University in 2007. His research interests are at the intersection of economics and sociology and also of economics and natural resource management, and particularly in using insights from these different areas into understanding why poverty is persistent. He has worked in the field in Ethiopia, Cambodia, Laos and Indonesia.

Kindly RSVP by 20 October 2012

This seminar may be attended via video conference in Pretoria, Cape Town and KwaZulu-Natal. Details as below.

Cape Town: HSRC, 12th Floor, Plein Park Building (Opposite Revenue Office), Plein Street, Cape Town. Contact Jean Witten, Tel (021) 4668004, Fax (021) 461 0299, or

Durban: First floor HSRC board room, 750 Francois Road, Ntuthuko Junction, Pods 5 and 6, Cato Manor, Contact Ridhwaan Khan, Tel (031) 242 5400, cell: 083 788 2786 or

Pretoria: HSRC Video Conference, 1st floor HSRC Library Human Sciences Research Council, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria. Arlene Grossberg, Tel: (012) 302 2811, e-mail: