Information Technology Intensity, Diffusion, and Job Creation
Using the detailed Statistics of US Business and the Annual Input-Output accounts, this paper addresses the employment dynamics of establishments of different sizes, in different sectors, and of different intensity of use of information technology hardware, software and IT-services over the time period 2001 to 2009. Findings include (1): IT-using sectors that are above-average in IT-intensity started out being three times more IT-intensive and ended up being more than four-times the IT-intensity as the below-average using sectors. Hence, there is widening dispersion in IT-intensity across sectors in the US economy. (2) IT producers are a small part of the economy, only about 3% of employment. However, IT-software and services establishments have tended to add jobs on net, particularly at smaller establishments (size 1-99 employees). This suggests that IT again is the hot-bed of entrepreneurship. (3) Small IT-intensive service establishments account for only about 5% of overall employment. However, net job creation at these small-IT-intensive using establishments accounted for between 13% and 68% of the economy-wide net job change from 2001 to 2009. Entrepreneurship in these IT-using services appears to be promoted by the availability of IT-software and IT-services themselves. (4) Establishments that use IT-intensively both in the manufacturing and services sectors, expand and contract employment over the business cycle relatively more than non-IT-intensive manufacturing and service establishments. This employment management strategy is more dramatic for manufacturing than for services. (5) Three approaches to quantifying the direct and indirect gains to the US economy of lower IT prices and increased IT-intensity add up to between $810 and $935 billion for the five years considered 2002-2007. Including IT-services such as computer design, yields a ball-park round $1 trillion as reasonable figure for the gain to the US economy of broad-based use of information technology hardware, software and IT-services for the mid-decade 2000s five-year time period.
|Date of creation:||Mar 2012|
|Date of revision:|
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