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Skills, Exports, and the Wages of Seven Million Latin American Workers

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Author Info

  • Irene Brambilla

    (Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Universidad de San Andrés y NBER)

  • Rafael Dix Carneiro

    (Princeton University)

  • Daniel Lederman

    (The World Bank)

  • Guido Porto

    (Universidad Nacional de La Plata)

Abstract

The returns to schooling and the skill premium are key parameters in various elds and policy debates, including the literatures on globalization and inequality, international migration, and technological change. This paper explores the skill premium and its correlation with exports in Latin America, thus linking the skill premium to the emerg- ing literature on the structure of trade and development. Using data on employment and wages for over seven million workers from sixteen Latin American economies, the authors estimate national and industry-speci c returns to schooling and skill premi- ums and study some of their determinants. The evidence suggests that both country and industry characteristics are important in explaining returns to schooling and skill premiums. The analyses also suggest that the incidence of exports within industries, the average income per capita within countries, and the relative abundance of skilled workers are related to the underlying industry and country characteristics that explain these parameters. In particular, sectoral exports are positively correlated with the skill premium at the industry level, a result that supports recent trade models linking exports with wages and the demand for skills.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CEDLAS, Universidad Nacional de La Plata in its series CEDLAS, Working Papers with number 0119.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:dls:wpaper:0119

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Postal: Calle 48 No555 - La Plata (1900)
Phone: 21- 1466
Fax: 54-21-25-9536
Web page: http://cedlas.econo.unlp.edu.ar/
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Keywords: industry skill premium; industry exports; Latin America;

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References

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  1. Pavcnik, Nina, 2002. "Trade Liberalization, Exit, and Productivity Improvement: Evidence from Chilean Plants," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(1), pages 245-76, January.
  2. Griliches, Zvi, 1977. "Estimating the Returns to Schooling: Some Econometric Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(1), pages 1-22, January.
  3. Bernard, Andrew B. & Bradford Jensen, J., 1999. "Exceptional exporter performance: cause, effect, or both?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 1-25, February.
  4. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou & Pavcnik, Nina, 2005. "Trade, wages, and the political economy of trade protection: evidence from the Colombian trade reforms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 75-105, May.
  5. De Loecker, Jan, 2007. "Do exports generate higher productivity? Evidence from Slovenia," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 69-98, September.
  6. Roberto Alvarez & Ricardo López, 2005. "Exporting and performance: evidence from Chilean plants," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 38(4), pages 1384-1400, November.
  7. Hartmut Egger & Udo Kreickemeier, 2009. "Firm Heterogeneity And The Labor Market Effects Of Trade Liberalization," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 50(1), pages 187-216, 02.
  8. Dickens, William T & Lang, Kevin, 1988. "Labor Market Segmentation and the Union Wage Premium," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 70(3), pages 527-30, August.
  9. Beine, Michel & Docquier, Frederic & Rapoport, Hillel, 2001. "Brain drain and economic growth: theory and evidence," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 275-289, February.
  10. Eric A. Verhoogen, 2008. "Trade, Quality Upgrading, and Wage Inequality in the Mexican Manufacturing Sector," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(2), pages 489-530, 05.
  11. Mikael Lindahl & Alan B. Krueger, 2001. "Education for Growth: Why and for Whom?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1101-1136, December.
  12. Alessandro Nicita & Marcelo Olarreaga, 2007. "Trade, Production, and Protection Database, 1976--2004," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 21(1), pages 165-171.
  13. A. Isgut, 2001. "What's Different about Exporters? Evidence from Colombian Manufacturing," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(5), pages 57-82.
  14. Nina Pavcnik & Andreas Blom & Pinelopi Goldberg & Norbert Schady, 2004. "Trade Liberalization and Industry Wage Structure: Evidence from Brazil," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 18(3), pages 319-344.
  15. Schank, Thorsten & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2007. "Do exporters really pay higher wages? First evidence from German linked employer-employee data," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 52-74, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Sarra Ben Yahmed, 2012. "Gender Wage Gaps across Skills and Trade Openness," AMSE Working Papers 1232, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, Marseille, France, revised Nov 2012.
  2. Jorge Friedman & Nanno Mulder & Sebastián Faúndez & Esteban Pérez Caldentey & Carlos Yévenes & Mario Velásquez & Fernando Baizán & Gerhard Reinecke, 2011. "Openness, Wage Gaps and Unions in Chile: A Micro Econometric Analysis," OECD Trade Policy Papers 134, OECD Publishing.
  3. Porto, Guido, 2012. "The cost of adjustment to green growth policies : lessons from trade adjustment costs," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6237, The World Bank.
  4. Oostendorp, Remco H. & Doan, Quang Hong, 2013. "Have the returns to education really increased in Vietnam? Wage versus employment effect," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(3), pages 923-938.
  5. Thomas Sampson, 2011. "Assignment Reversals: Trade, Skill Allocation and Wage Inequality," CEP Discussion Papers dp1105, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  6. Lederman, Daniel, 2011. "International trade and inclusive growth : a primer for busy policy analysts," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5886, The World Bank.

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