A region’s growth trajectory is influenced by the economic circumstances of
other regions in its proximity. While proximity is often understood in a geographic
sense, we consider commuting as a channel for cross-regional economic dependencies.
In contrast to geographic measures, commuter flows are inherently asymmetric
and heterogeneous. Estimating a time-space dynamic panel model with German
county-level data, we demonstrate a considerable variation in the distribution of
shock responses, which is hidden by the traditional focus on average marginal effects.
We advocate for a more in-depth analysis of the spatial-effects distribution
and highlight that local spatial multipliers differ depending on the nature of the
shock and the assumed network structure.