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Relative Demand for Skills in Swedish Manufacturing: Technology or Trade?

  • Hansson, Par

The rate of change in the share of skilled labor has increased steadily over the past 35 years in Swedish manufacturing. A closer inspection of the period after 1970 indicates that, while relative supply changes of skilled labor seem to have been the main driving force behind the growing skill shares in manufacturing industries over the period 1970-85, an acceleration in the relative demand for skills appears to have propelled higher skill shares during the late 1980s and at the beginning of the 1990s. Consistent with such a development is the finding of an increasing degree of complementarity between knowledge capital and skilled labor, and that Swedish manufacturing firms, in recent years, have invested heavily in R&D. There is also some support for the belief that intensified competition from the South has increased the relative demand for skilled labor. However, the impact appears to be small and essentially driven by the textile industry. Copyright 2000 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of International Economics.

Volume (Year): 8 (2000)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
Pages: 533-55

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Handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:8:y:2000:i:3:p:533-55
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  1. Stephen Machin & John Van Reenen, 1998. "Technology and changes in skill structure: evidence from seven OECD countries," IFS Working Papers W98/04, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  2. Per-Anders Edin & Bertl Holmlund, 1993. "The Swedish Wage Stucture: The Rise and Fall of Solidarity Wage Policy?," NBER Working Papers 4257, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. repec:att:wimass:9620 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Horn, H. & Lang, H. & Lundgren, S., 1991. "Managerial Effort Incentives, X-Inefficiency and International Trade," Papers 507, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  5. Wolfgang Keller, 1997. "Trade and the Transmission of Technology," Development and Comp Systems 9707001, EconWPA.
  6. Blomström, Magnus & Fors, Gunnar & Lipsey, Robert E., 1997. "Foreign Direct Investment and Employment: Home Country Experience in the United States and Sweden," Working Paper Series 490, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  7. Machin, Steve, 1994. "Changes in the Relative Demand for Skills in the UK Labour Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 952, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Hansson, Pär, 1996. "Trade, Technology and Changes in Employment of Skilled Labour in Swedish Manufacturing," Working Paper Series 131, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.
  9. Edward E. Leamer, 1994. "Trade, Wages and Revolving Door Ideas," NBER Working Papers 4716, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Richard B. Freeman & Lawrence F. Katz, 1995. "Differences and Changes in Wage Structures," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number free95-1, August.
  11. Desjonqueres, Thibaut & Machin, Stephen & Van Reenen, John, 1999. " Another Nail in the Coffin? Or Can the Trade Based Explanation of Changing Skill Structures Be Resurrected?," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 101(4), pages 533-54, December.
  12. Feenstra, R.C. & Hanson, G.H., 1995. "Foreign Investment, Outsourcing and Relative Wages," Department of Economics 95-14, California Davis - Department of Economics.
  13. Hall, Bronwyn H. & Mairesse, Jacques, 1995. "Exploring the relationship between R&D and productivity in French manufacturing firms," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 263-293, January.
  14. Wolfgang Keller, 1997. "Trade and Transmission of Technology," NBER Working Papers 6113, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1998. "Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed The Labor Market?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1169-1213, November.
  16. Berman, Eli & Bound, John & Griliches, Zvi, 1994. "Changes in the Demand for Skilled Labor within U.S. Manufacturing: Evidence from the Annual Survey of Manufactures," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(2), pages 367-97, May.
  17. Wood, Adrian, 1995. "North-South Trade, Employment and Inequality: Changing Fortunes in a Skill-Driven World," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198290155, March.
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