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

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  • Pär Hansson

Abstract

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.

Suggested Citation

  • Pär Hansson, 2000. "Relative Demand for Skills in Swedish Manufacturing: Technology or Trade?," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 8(3), pages 533-555, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:8:y:2000:i:3:p:533-555
    DOI: 10.1111/1467-9396.00240
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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