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Diffusion des innovations technologiques, emploi et théorie de compensation (The diffusion of technological innovations, employment and the compensation theory)

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  • Sami Saafi

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    (Labrii, ULCO)

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    Abstract

    Certes, l’innovation technologique a souvent été synonyme de chômage pour l’opinion publique. Cette opinion est fondée sur l’idée de substitution du capital au travail. En revanche, selon la théorie de compensation, l’innovation technologique détruit des emplois à court terme (effet de remplacement), mais en crée à moyen et à long terme (effet de compensation). La théorie de compensation postule qu’à long terme - c’est-à-dire lorsque l’accumulation de nouveau capital est possible et le revenu global disponible n’est plus supposé constant, l’extension des capacités de production, favorisée par l’augmentation des profits, permet de créer de nouveaux emplois. Néanmoins les mécanismes de compensation requièrent un transfert fluide de la main d’oeuvre, du capital et de la demande entre les différentes activités. Un tel transfert s’opère d’autant mieux que les marchés sont efficients, flexibles, c’est-à-dire que les prix s’adaptent et que les barrières de mobilités sont réduites. Certainly, in the public opinion, technological innovation has often been considered as synonymous to unemployment. This opinion is based on the idea of substitution capital/labor. However, according to the compensation theory, technological innovations destroy jobs in the short term (replacement effect) but create new jobs in the medium and long terms (compensation effect). The compensation theory postulates that in the long term- that is to say when new capital accumulation is possible and available, total income is not assumed constant- the extension of production capacities, favored by the increase of benefits, allows to create new jobs. But, the compensation mechanisms request a fluid transfer of employees, capital and demand between different activities. Such transfer takes place even better when markets are efficient, flexible, which means that prices are flexible and that the barriers to mobility are reduced.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Laboratoire de Recherche sur l'Industrie et l'Innovation. ULCO / Research Unit on Industry and Innovation in its series Working Papers with number 184.

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    Length: 17 pages
    Date of creation: May 2008
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    Publication status: Published in Cahiers du Lab.RII, May 2008
    Handle: RePEc:rii:riidoc:184

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    Keywords: : Technological innovations; employment; compensation theory;

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    1. Peters, Bettina, 2004. "Employment Effects of Different Innovation Activities: Microeconometric Evidence," ZEW Discussion Papers 04-73, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    2. Nickell, S. & Komg, P., 1989. "Technical Progress And Jobs," Papers, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics 366, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
    3. Rupert Harrison & Jordi Jaumandreu & Jacques Mairesse & Bettina Peters, 2008. "Does Innovation Stimulate Employment? A Firm-Level Analysis Using Comparable Micro-Data from Four European Countries," NBER Working Papers 14216, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Katsoulacos, Y., 1984. "Product innovation and employment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 26(1-2), pages 83-108.
    5. Tommaso Antonucci & Mario Pianta, 2002. "Employment Effects of Product and Process Innovation in Europe," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(3), pages 295-307.
    6. repec:sae:niesru:v:111:y::i:1:p:62-85 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Neary, J Peter, 1981. "On the Short-Run Effects of Technological Progress," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 33(2), pages 224-33, July.
    8. Van Reenen, John, 1997. "Employment and Technological Innovation: Evidence from U.K. Manufacturing Firms," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(2), pages 255-84, April.
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