IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Schumpeterian growth and the political economy of employment protection


  • Wolf-Heimo Grieben



This paper analyzes the differing attitudes concerning political support for employment protection between skilled and unskilled workers in a quality-ladder growth model. Creative destruction through innovation results in “Schumpeterian unemployment” of unskilled workers. By voting on firing costs, unskilled workers consider a trade-off between the benefit of fewer unemployment spells and the cost of lower quality growth of consumer goods. Skilled workers, although not threatened by unemployment, may vote for even larger firing costs. Alleviating one labor market rigidity by increasing the matching efficiency between firms and unskilled workers aggravates another rigidity by creating political support for additional firing costs. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2005

Suggested Citation

  • Wolf-Heimo Grieben, 2005. "Schumpeterian growth and the political economy of employment protection," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 86(1), pages 77-118, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jeczfn:v:86:y:2005:i:1:p:77-118
    DOI: 10.1007/BF03051801

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gilles Saint-Paul, 2002. "The Political Economy of Employment Protection," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(3), pages 672-701, June.
    2. John Hassler & José V. Rodríguez Mora & Kjetil Storesletten & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2003. "The Survival of the Welfare State," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 87-112, March.
    3. Siebert, Horst, 1997. "Labor market rigidities and unemployment in Europe," Kiel Working Papers 787, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    4. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth through Creative Destruction," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(2), pages 323-351, March.
    5. Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Growth: With or Without Scale Effects?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 139-144, May.
    6. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1991. "Quality Ladders in the Theory of Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(1), pages 43-61.
    7. Segerstrom, Paul S, 1998. "Endogenous Growth without Scale Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1290-1310, December.
    8. Jones, Charles I, 1995. "R&D-Based Models of Economic Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(4), pages 759-784, August.
    9. Philippe Aghion & Christopher Harris & Peter Howitt & John Vickers, 2001. "Competition, Imitation and Growth with Step-by-Step Innovation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 68(3), pages 467-492.
    10. Paul S. Segerstrom, 2007. "Intel Economics," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(1), pages 247-280, February.
    11. Gilles Joseph & Thomas Weitzenblum, 2003. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance: Transitional Dynamics vs. Steady State," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(4), pages 869-884, October.
    12. Segerstrom, Paul S & Anant, T C A & Dinopoulos, Elias, 1990. "A Schumpeterian Model of the Product Life Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1077-1091, December.
    13. Horst Siebert, 1997. "Labor Market Rigidities: At the Root of Unemployment in Europe," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 37-54, Summer.
    14. Paul Segerstrom & Elias Dinopoulos, 1999. "A Schumpeterian Model of Protection and Relative Wages," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 450-472, June.
    15. Federico Etro, 2004. "Innovation by leaders," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(495), pages 281-303, April.
    16. Arnold, Lutz G., 2002. "On the growth effects of North-South trade: the role of labor market flexibility," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 451-466, December.
    17. Elias Dinopoulos & Peter Thompson, 1996. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Endogenous Growth," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 22(4), pages 389-400, Fall.
    18. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:15:y:2003:i:4:p:1-8 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Wolf-Heimo Grieben, 2006. "Globalization with Labor Market Frictions and Non-Scale Growth," DEGIT Conference Papers c011_053, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.

    More about this item


    Non-Scale Growth; Schumpeterian Unemployment; Firing Costs; J63; O33; E24; D72;

    JEL classification:

    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:jeczfn:v:86:y:2005:i:1:p:77-118. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.