IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ehl/lserod/19948.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

We can work it out: the impact of technological change on the demand for low skill workers

Author

Listed:
  • Manning, Alan

Abstract

There is little doubt that technology has had the most profound effect on altering the tasks that we humans do in our jobs. Economists have long speculated on how technical change affects both the absolute demand for labour as a whole and the relative demands for different types of labour. In recent years, the idea of skill-biased technical change has become the consensus view about the current impact of technology on labour demand, namely that technical change leads to an increase in the demand for skilled relative to unskilled labour painting a bleak future for the employment prospects of less-skilled workers. But, drawing on a recent paper by Autor, Levy and Murnane (2003) about the impact of technology on the demand for different types of skills, this paper argues that the demand in the least-skilled jobs may be growing. But, it is argued that employment of the less-skilled is increasingly dependent on physical proximity to the moreskilled and may also be vulnerable in the long-run to further technological developments.

Suggested Citation

  • Manning, Alan, 2004. "We can work it out: the impact of technological change on the demand for low skill workers," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19948, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:19948
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/19948/
    File Function: Open access version.
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. A. Gautier, Pieter & J. van den Berg, Gerard & C. van Ours, Jan & Ridder, Geert, 2002. "Worker turnover at the firm level and crowding out of lower educated workers," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 523-538, March.
    2. Teulings, Coen & Koopmanschap, Marc, 1989. "An econometric model of crowding out of lower education levels," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(8), pages 1653-1664, October.
    3. David Card & Thomas Lemieux, 2001. "Can Falling Supply Explain the Rising Return to College for Younger Men? A Cohort-Based Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(2), pages 705-746.
    4. Sen, Amartya, 1983. "Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198284635.
    5. Leontief, Wassily & Duchin, Faye, 1986. "The Future Impact of Automation on Workers," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195036237.
    6. David H. Autor & Frank Levy & Richard J. Murnane, 2003. "The skill content of recent technological change: an empirical exploration," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
    7. Enrico Moretti, 2002. "Human Capital Spillovers in Manufacturing: Evidence from Plant-Level Production Functions," NBER Working Papers 9316, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. David Card & John E. DiNardo, 2002. "Skill-Biased Technological Change and Rising Wage Inequality: Some Problems and Puzzles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(4), pages 733-783, October.
    9. Daron Acemoglu, 2002. "Directed Technical Change," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(4), pages 781-809.
    10. Nickell, S. & Komg, P., 1989. "Technical Progress And Jobs," Papers 366, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
    11. Ciccone, Antonio & Peri, Giovanni, 2002. "Identifying Human Capital Externalities: Theory with an Application to US Cities," CEPR Discussion Papers 3350, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labor Demand and Technology; Inequality;

    JEL classification:

    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:19948. 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: (LSERO Manager). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/lsepsuk.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.