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Skilled and Unskilled Wage Dynamics in Italy in the ‘90s: Changes in the individual characteristics, institutions, trade and technology

  • Anna M. Falzoni
  • Alessandra Venturini
  • Claudia Villosio

In this paper we use individual micro data on workers combined with industry and regional data to study the wage dynamics of skilled and unskilled workers in Italy in the period 1991-1998. Being different to previous empirical studies, our data allow us to explore in a unique framework the role of many of the factors indicated in the literature as possible causes of the widening of the wage gap between skilled and unskilled workers: changes in the individual characteristics of workers, changes in the institutions of the labour market, increasing international integration and skill-biased technological progress. Our results show that international integration, both in terms of trade in goods and in terms of international labour mobility, plays a role in determining the wage dynamics of skilled (white collar) and of unskilled (blue collar) workers. In addition, in line with the research in labour economics, our findings show that the individual characteristics of workers, and the institutional variables matter more in explaining skilled and unskilled wage dynamics than differential wage one.

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Paper provided by LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies in its series LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series with number 61.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cca:wplabo:61
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  13. Rodolfo Helg & Riccardo Faini & Anna M. Falzoni & Marzio Galeotti & Alessandro Turrini, 2001. "Importing Jobs And Exporting Firms? On The Wage And Employment Implications Of Italy’S Trade And Foreign Direct Investment Flows," International Trade 0103001, EconWPA.
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  17. Blau, Francine D & Kahn, Lawrence M, 1996. "International Differences in Male Wage Inequality: Institutions versus Market Forces," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(4), pages 791-836, August.
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  19. Berman, Eli & Bound, John & Griliches, Zvi, 1994. "Changes in the Demand for Skilled Labor within U.S. Manufacturing: Evidence from the Annual Survey of Manufactures," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(2), pages 367-97, May.
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  23. Geishecker, Ingo & Gorg, Holger, 2005. "Do unskilled workers always lose from fragmentation?," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 81-92, March.
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