IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this book chapter or follow this series

Productivity Concepts, Trends And Prospects: An Overview

In: The Review of Economic Performance and Social Progress 2002: Towards a Social Understanding of Productivity

In this chapter, Andrew Sharpe provides a comprehensive non-technical introduction to the productivity issue, including discussion of productivity concepts, measurement issues, trends and prospects. He begins by noting that productivity is the relationship between the output of goods and services and the inputs of resources, both human and non-human used in their production. The measurement of productivity is fraught with conceptual and empirical issues, meaning that there can be a significant margin of error associated with productivity growth rates, even at the aggregate level. Sharpe identifies two particularly important measurement problems, namely the estimation of real output in the non-market sector where output is not measured independently of inputs and the estimation of price indices (which are needed to calculate real output) for products where quality has improved significantly or for new products (e.g. computers). According to Sharpe, the most important productivity trends that the general public should be aware of are: the post-1973 productivity slowdown; the postwar convergence in OECD productivity levels toward the US level; the post-1995 acceleration in labour productivity growth in the United States; the decline in Canada's relative international productivity ranking; and the widening of the Canada-US manufacturing productivity gap.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

in new window

This chapter was published in:
This item is provided by Centre for the Study of Living Standards & The Institutute for Research on Public Policy in its series The Review of Economic Performance and Social Progress with number v:2:y:2002:as.
Handle: RePEc:sls:repsls:v:2:y:2002:as
Contact details of provider: Postal: 151 Slater Street, Suite 710, Ottawa, ON K1P 5H3
Phone: 613-233-8891
Fax: 613-233-8250
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

Postal: 1470 Peel Street, Suite 200, Montreal, QC H3A 1T1
Web page:

Order Information: Web: Email:

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sls:repsls:v:2:y:2002:as. 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: (CSLS)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.