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Technical Progres and Wage Dispersion in Italy: Evidence from Firm's Data

  • Paola CASAVOLA
  • Andréa GAVOSTO
  • Paolo SESTITO

In this paper we test for the effect of technological progress on the labour demand and relative earnings by skill in Italy from 1986 to 1990. We consider a large panel of firms, about 36,000: the data allow us to construct a proxy of the use of new technology by each firm. Our main conclusions are that: (i) wage dispersion in Italy did not increase by the same extent as in the US and UK; (ii) technological progress led to a remarkable increase in the employment of skilled (captured in our data by white-collars) vis-à-vis blue-collar workers. However relative earnings did not experience a similar rise. We suggest that both a shift in the supply of skills and the features of the Italian wage bargaining system counteracted the rise in earnings dispersion.

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Article provided by ENSAE in its journal Annals of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): (1996)
Issue (Month): 41-42 ()
Pages: 387-412

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Handle: RePEc:adr:anecst:y:1996:i:41-42:p:16
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