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Costly investment, complementarities and the skill premium

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  • Afonso, Óscar
  • Thompson, Maria

Abstract

We propose a new framework to analyse the relationship between the relative high-skilled labour endowment, the skill premium and economic growth. Building on Acemoglu and Zilibotti (2001), we introduce physical capital; internal costly investment in both capital and R&D; and complementarities between intermediate goods. We only find a positive relationship between the relative labour endowment and both the skill premium and economic growth within determined intervals of relative labour endowment values, which vary with the absolute productive advantage of high over low-skilled labour. The model thus accommodates theoretically mixed empirical results on the relative labour endowment-skill premium relationship. We further find that the impact on both the relative labour endowment and the skill premium of a rise in investment costs or in the complementarities degree depends on: (i) the absolute productivity advantage of high over low-skilled labour; and (ii) the relative labour endowment.

Suggested Citation

  • Afonso, Óscar & Thompson, Maria, 2011. "Costly investment, complementarities and the skill premium," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(5), pages 2254-2262, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:28:y:2011:i:5:p:2254-2262
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Pedro Mazeda Gil & Oscar Afonso & Paulo Brito, 2012. "Skill Structure and Technology Structure: Innovation and Growth Implications," FEP Working Papers 470, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
    2. Gangopadhyay, Kausik & Nishimura, Atsushi & Pal, Rupayan, 2016. "Can the information technology revolution explain the incidence of co-movement of skill premium and stock prices?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 107-120.
    3. Agenor, Pierre-Richard & Dinh, Hinh T., 2013. "Public policy and industrial transformation in the process of development," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6405, The World Bank.
    4. Afonso, Oscar, 2013. "Diffusion and directed technological knowledge, human capital and wages," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 370-382.
    5. Pedro Mazeda Gil & Oscar Afonso & Paulo Brito, 2012. "Scale Effects, Relative Supply of Skills, Industrial Structure and Endogenous Growth," DEGIT Conference Papers c017_028, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
    6. Pedro Mazeda Gil & Oscar Afonso & Paulo B. Vasconcelos, 2015. "Skill-Structure Shocks, the Share of the High-Tech Sector and Economic Growth Dynamics," FEP Working Papers 554, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
    7. Pedro Mazeda Gil & Oscar Afonso & Paulo B. Vasconcelos, 2013. "Industry Dynamics and Aggregate Stability over Transition," FEP Working Papers 484, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    R&D Technological-knowledge bias Skill premium Complementarities Costly investment;

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

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