Prolonged exposure to pollutant particles was shown to reduce the output of workers in China.
Economists from the National University of Singapore (NUS) have completed an extensive study which reveals that exposure to air pollution over several weeks is not just unhealthy, it can also reduce employee productivity.
Associate Professor Alberto Salvo from the Department of Economics at the NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and an author of the study, explained, “Most of us are familiar with the negative impact air pollution can have on health, but as economists, we wanted to look for other socioeconomic outcomes. Our aim with this research was to broaden the understanding of air pollution in ways that have not been explored. We typically think that firms benefit from lax pollution regulations, by saving on emission control equipment and the like; here we document an adverse effect on the productivity of their work force.”
The results of this study were published in the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics on 3 January 2019.
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