Adjusting to a New Technology: Experience and Training
AbstractDecember 1998 How does the economy react to the arrival of a new major technology? The existing literature on General Purpose Technologies (GPTs) has studied the role that mechanisms like secondary innovations, diffusion, and learning by firms play in the adjustment process. By contrast, we focus on a new mechanisms based on the interplay between technological change and human capital accumulation. We show that technological change that requires more education and training, like computerization, necessarily produces an initial slowdown. Surprisingly, however, technological change that lowers the training requirement, like the move from the artisan shop to the factory, can produce either a bust or a boom. We identify three key properties that determine which effect will occur: (1) the productivity of inexperienced workers; (2) the speed with which experience increases productivity; and (3) the level of general skills required to operate the new technology.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Stanford University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 99002.
Date of creation: Dec 1998
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Other versions of this item:
- Helpman, Elhanan & Rangel, Antonio, 1999. " Adjusting to a New Technology: Experience and Training," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 4(4), pages 359-83, December.
- Elhanan Helpman & Antonio Rangel, 1998. "Adjusting to a New Technology: Experience and Training," NBER Working Papers 6551, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Elhanan Helpman & Antonio Rangel, 1998. "Adjusting to a New Technology: Experience and Training," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1833, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Helpman, Elhanan & Rangel, Antonio, 1998. "Adjusting to a New Technology: Experience and Training," CEPR Discussion Papers 1930, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Helpman, E. & Rangel, A., 1998. "Adjusting to a New Technology: Experience and Training," Papers 07-98, Tel Aviv.
- O30 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
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