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Technology, Human Capital and Labor Demand
Uppsala University, Humanistisk-samhällsvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
2006 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Essay 1 investigates (i) possible externalities in the use of IT and (ii) IT and human capital interactions. Our empirical analysis uses a 14-industry panel for Swedish manufacturing 1986-95. We shed light on the small or negative growth effects found in early studies of the effects of IT on productivity growth and the positive impacts reported more recently. Human capital developments made the average effect of IT essentially zero in 1986 and steadily increasing thereafter, and, also, generated large differences in growth effects across industries.

Essay 2 uses a cost function to investigate how changes in age structure and educational composition affect productivity growth. The empirical analysis is based on industry data for the Swedish manufacturing sector 1985-1995. Age structure changes matter more for growth than changes in fields-of-study composition. Substituting low- and semi-skilled workers that are at least 50 years old for workers below 30, increases growth. Increasing the share of technicians and engineers also has a positive effect.

Essay 3 investigates whether capital-skill complementarity is the explanation for skill-biased technical change. A capital-age adjusted translog production function is implemented on a 14-industry panel for Swedish manufacturing 1985-95. The capital-skill complementarity hypothesis is not supported in several industries. Moreover, it is found that both disemdodied and embodied technical change affect the demand for skilled labor. Also, a negative skill-bias is associated with embodied technical change.

Essay 4 uses a parametric shadow cost function approach to investigate the existence of allocative inefficiencies in the IT-sector. A 19-industry panel for the Swedish economy for the years 1985-95 is used. The existence of allocative inefficiencies in the IT-sector seems to have caused under-utilization of semi-skilled labor and over-utilization of skilled-labor. The inefficiencies decrease considerably after year 2000. The additional costs caused by allocative inefficiency in the IT-sector seem to have been negligible.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Nationalekonomiska institutionen , 2006. , 151 p.
Economic studies, ISSN 0283-7668 ; 93
Keyword [en]
Economics, Technology, Human Capital, Productivity, Efficiency
Keyword [sv]
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-6955ISBN: 91-85519-00-6OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-6955DiVA: diva2:168564
Public defence
2006-06-05, Hörsal 2, Ekonomikum, Kyrkogårdsgatan 10 B, Uppsala, 10:15
Available from: 2006-05-12 Created: 2006-05-12Bibliographically approved

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