Factor Endowments and the Returns to Skill: New Evidence from the American Past
Existing skill-biased technical change theory predicts that differences in factor endowments will affect technology adoption and the return to skill. We document regional variation in endowments in the American past. We then estimate the returns to education using a new data source: a report from the Commissioner of Education in 1909. We find significant variation in the returns to schooling aligned with differences in resource endowments, with large (within-occupation) returns in the Midwest and Southwest but much lower returns in the South and West. Our results appear generalizable to broader returns to education in the United States.
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- David H. Autor & Frank Levy & Richard J. Murnane, 2003.
"The skill content of recent technological change: an empirical exploration,"
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
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Working Paper Series
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- Hoyt Bleakley, 2007. "Disease and Development: Evidence from Hookworm Eradication in the American South," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(1), pages 73-117.
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