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The learning economy and embodied knowledge flows in Great Britain

  • Mark Tomlinson


    (ESRC Centre for Research on Innovation and Competition, University of Manchester, University Precinct Centre, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9QH, UK)

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    This paper examines the `learning economy' from the perspective of occupational characteristics and changes in the British labour market between 1980 and 1992. Following a discussion of the learning and knowledge economy, cross-sectional employment data are analysed to ascertain which occupations can be classified as knowledge-based. Longitudinal career history data are then used to trace the flows of these `knowledge workers' over time. Sectoral shifts are examined, with a particular focus on the knowledge-intensive service sectors. The data come from the Employment in Britain survey: a large-scale employee survey from 1992. The approach used allows us to measure somewhat intangible aspects of economic behaviour such as learning and tacit knowledge and attempt to trace their flows. Shifts in knowledge from the manufacturing to the service sector are shown to be important and related to previous work which demonstrated the importance of knowledge intensive business services for both output and productivity in manufacturing.

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    Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Evolutionary Economics.

    Volume (Year): 9 (1999)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 431-451

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    Handle: RePEc:spr:joevec:v:9:y:1999:i:4:p:431-451
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