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Changes in the Structure of Earnings During the Polish Transition

  • Eswar Prasad
  • Michael P. Keane

This paper documents that inequality in labor earnings increased substantially during the economic transition in Poland. One surprising result is that earnings inequality increased markedly in both the private and public sectors, indicating that even state-owned enterprises in Poland moved toward competitive wage setting during the transition. Education premia increased sharply, while experience premia declined. Increases in within-group inequality account for about 60 percent of the increase in overall wage inequality. But, contrary to the experience of countries like the United States, increases in within-group inequality in Poland were very different across skill groups, with much larger increases for highly educated workers.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 02/135.

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Length: 54
Date of creation: 01 Aug 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:02/135
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  1. Brainerd, Elizabeth, 1998. "Winners and Losers in Russia's Economic Transition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1094-1116, December.
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  8. J. David Brown & John S. Earle, 2004. "Economic Reforms and Productivity-Enhancing Reallocation in the Post-Soviet Transition," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 04-98, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  9. Andrew Newell & Mieczyslaw Socha, 1998. "Wages distribution in Poland: The roles of privatization and international trade, 1992-96," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 6(1), pages 47-65, 05.
  10. Eswar Prasad, 2000. "The Unbearable Stability of the German Wage Structure: Evidence and Interpretation," IMF Working Papers 00/22, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Eswar Prasad & Michael P. Keane, 2000. "Inequality, Transfers and Growth: New Evidence From the Economic Transition in Poland," IMF Working Papers 00/117, International Monetary Fund.
  12. Francesco Caselli, 1999. "Technological Revolutions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 78-102, March.
  13. Stephen Machin & John Van Reenen, 1998. "Technology and changes in skill structure: evidence from seven OECD countries," IFS Working Papers W98/04, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
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  15. Atkinson,Anthony Barnes & Micklewright,John, 1992. "Economic Transformation in Eastern Europe and the Distribution of Income," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521438827, October.
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  17. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter & Violante, Giovanni L, 2000. "General Purpose Technology and Within-Group Inequality," CEPR Discussion Papers 2474, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Keane, Michael P & Prasad, Eswar S, 1996. "The Employment and Wage Effects of Oil Price Changes: A Sectoral Analysis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(3), pages 389-400, August.
  19. Robert J. Flanagan, 1995. "Wage Structures in the Transition of the Czech Economy," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 42(4), pages 836-854, December.
  20. Orazem, Peter F. & Vodopivec, Milan, 1994. "Winners and losers in transition : returns to education, experience, and gender in Slovenia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1342, The World Bank.
  21. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 1998. "Ability Biased Technological Transition, Wage Inequality, and Economic Growth," Working Papers 98-14, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  22. Peter Gottschalk & Timothy M. Smeeding, 1997. "Cross-National Comparisons of Earnings and Income Inequality," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(2), pages 633-687, June.
  23. Richard B. Freeman & Remco Oostendorp, 2000. "Wages Around the World: Pay Across Occupations and Countries," NBER Working Papers 8058, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Gould, Eric D & Moav, Omer & Weinberg, Bruce A, 2001. " Precautionary Demand for Education, Inequality, and Technological Progress," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 285-315, December.
  25. Svejnar, Jan, 1996. "Enterprises and Workers in the Transition: Econometric Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 123-27, May.
  26. Brian Pinto & Marek Belka & Stefan Krajewski, 1993. "Transforming State Enterprises in Poland: Evidence on Adjustment by Manufacturing Firms," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 24(1), pages 213-270.
  27. Philippe Aghion & Simon Commander, 1999. "On the dynamics of inequality in the transition," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 7(2), pages 275-298, July.
  28. Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-42, June.
  29. Rutkowski, J.J., 1998. "Welfare and the Labor Market in Poland: Social Policy during Economic Transition," Papers 417, World Bank - Technical Papers.
  30. Thomas Lemieux & Nicole M. Fortin, 2000. "Are Women's Wage Gains Men's Losses? A Distributional Test," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 456-460, May.
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