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Inward Greenfield FDI and Patterns of Job Polarization

Author

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  • Sara Amoroso

    (European Commission, Joint Research Centre, 41092 Seville, Spain)

  • Pietro Moncada-Paternò-Castello

    (European Commission, Joint Research Centre, 41092 Seville, Spain)

Abstract

The unprecedented growth in foreign direct investment in the last few decades has caused drastic changes in the labor markets of the host countries. The major part of FDI takes place in low-tech industries, where the wages and skills are low, or in high-tech, where they offer a wage premium for the highly skilled workers. This mechanism may increase the polarization of employment into high-wage and low-wage jobs, at the expense of middle-skill jobs. This paper looks at the effects of two types of FDI inflows, namely foreign investment in high-skill and low-skill activities, on job polarization. We match data on greenfield FDI aggregated by country and sector with data on employment by occupational skill to investigate the extent to which different types of greenfield FDI are responsible for skill polarization. Our results show that low-skill foreign investment shifts employment from high- to medium- and low-skill jobs, while skill-intensive FDI generally leads to skill upgrading. Only FDI in information and communication technology (ICT) is associated with job polarization, but only when accounting for the plurality of job polarization patterns across European sectors.

Suggested Citation

  • Sara Amoroso & Pietro Moncada-Paternò-Castello, 2018. "Inward Greenfield FDI and Patterns of Job Polarization," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 10(4), pages 1-20, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:10:y:2018:i:4:p:1219-:d:141496
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    4. Bettina Becker & Nigel Driffield & Sandra Lancheros & James H. Love, 2020. "FDI in hot labour markets: The implications of the war for talent," Journal of International Business Policy, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 3(2), pages 107-133, June.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Foreign Direct Investment; Skills; European labor markets; Technological change; Globalization; Multinational enterprises;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F66 - International Economics - - Economic Impacts of Globalization - - - Labor
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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