IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/iza/izadps/dp4828.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Offshoring, Tasks, and the Skill-Wage Pattern

Author

Listed:
  • Baumgarten, Daniel

    () (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München)

  • Geishecker, Ingo

    () (University of Göttingen)

  • Görg, Holger

    () (Kiel Institute for the World Economy)

Abstract

The paper investigates the relationship between offshoring, wages, and the ease with which individuals' tasks can be offshored. Our analysis relates to recent theoretical contributions arguing that there is only a loose relationship between the suitability of a task for offshoring and the associated skill level. Accordingly, wage effects of offshoring can be very heterogeneous within skill groups. We test this hypothesis by combining micro-level information on wages and demographic and workplace characteristics as well as occupational information relating to the degree of offshorability with industry-level data on offshoring. Our main results suggest that in partial equilibrium, wage effects of offshoring are fairly modest but far from homogeneous and depend significantly on the extent to which the respective task requires personal interaction or can be described as non-routine. When allowing for cross-industry movement of workers, i.e., looking at a situation closer to general equilibrium, the magnitude of the wage effects of offshoring becomes substantial. Low- and medium-skilled workers experience significant wage cuts due to offshoring which, however, again strongly depend on the degree of personal interaction and non-routine content.

Suggested Citation

  • Baumgarten, Daniel & Geishecker, Ingo & Görg, Holger, 2010. "Offshoring, Tasks, and the Skill-Wage Pattern," IZA Discussion Papers 4828, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4828
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp4828.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Eswar S. Prasad, 2004. "The Unbearable Stability of the German Wage Structure: Evidence and Interpretation," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 51(2), pages 354-385.
    2. A. Colin Cameron & Jonah B. Gelbach & Douglas L. Miller, 2008. "Bootstrap-Based Improvements for Inference with Clustered Errors," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(3), pages 414-427, August.
    3. Ingo Geishecker, 2006. "Does Outsourcing to Central and Eastern Europe Really Threaten Manual Workers’ Jobs in Germany?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(5), pages 559-583, May.
    4. Becker, Sascha O. & Ekholm, Karolina & Muendler, Marc-Andreas, 2013. "Offshoring and the onshore composition of tasks and skills," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 91-106.
    5. Feenstra, Robert C & Hanson, Gordon H, 1996. "Globalization, Outsourcing, and Wage Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 240-245, May.
    6. Antonczyk Dirk & Leuschner Ute & Fitzenberger Bernd, 2009. "Can a Task-Based Approach Explain the Recent Changes in the German Wage Structure?," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 229(2-3), pages 214-238, April.
    7. 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.
    8. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Introduction to "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings"," NBER Chapters, in: Schooling, Experience, and Earnings, pages 1-4, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Avraham Ebenstein & Ann Harrison & Margaret McMillan & Shannon Phillips, 2014. "Estimating the Impact of Trade and Offshoring on American Workers using the Current Population Surveys," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 96(4), pages 581-595, October.
    10. Eli Bekman & John Bound & Stephen Machin, 1998. "Implications of Skill-Biased Technological Change: International Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1245-1279.
    11. David H. Autor & Michael J. Handel, 2013. "Putting Tasks to the Test: Human Capital, Job Tasks, and Wages," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(S1), pages 59-96.
    12. Biscourp, Pierre & Kramarz, Francis, 2007. "Employment, skill structure and international trade: Firm-level evidence for France," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 22-51, May.
    13. Wilhelm Kohler & Jens Wrona, 2010. "Offshoring Tasks, yet Creating Jobs?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3019, CESifo.
    14. Head, Keith & Ries, John, 2002. "Offshore production and skill upgrading by Japanese manufacturing firms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 81-105, October.
    15. Paul Beaudry & David A. Green, 2003. "Wages and Employment in the United States and Germany: What Explains the Differences?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(3), pages 573-602, June.
    16. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
    17. Christina Gathmann & Uta Schönberg, 2010. "How General Is Human Capital? A Task-Based Approach," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(1), pages 1-49, January.
    18. J. Bradford Jensen & Lori G. Kletzer, 2010. "Measuring Tradable Services and the Task Content of Offshorable Services Jobs," NBER Chapters, in: Labor in the New Economy, pages 309-335, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. David Hummels & Rasmus J?rgensen & Jakob Munch & Chong Xiang, 2014. "The Wage Effects of Offshoring: Evidence from Danish Matched Worker-Firm Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(6), pages 1597-1629, June.
    20. Schmidt, Christoph M & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 1991. "Work Characteristics, Firm Size and Wages," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(4), pages 705-710, November.
    21. Brown, Charles & Medoff, James, 1989. "The Employer Size-Wage Effect," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1027-1059, October.
    22. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number minc74-1, December.
    23. Rosario Crinò, 2010. "Service Offshoring and White-Collar Employment," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(2), pages 595-632.
    24. Gene M. Grossman & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2008. "Trading Tasks: A Simple Theory of Offshoring," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1978-1997, December.
    25. Lex Borghans & Bas ter Weel & Bruce A. Weinberg, 2008. "Interpersonal Styles and Labor Market Outcomes," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(4).
    26. Moulton, Brent R., 1986. "Random group effects and the precision of regression estimates," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 385-397, August.
    27. Christian Dustmann & Johannes Ludsteck & Uta Schönberg, 2009. "Revisiting the German Wage Structure," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(2), pages 843-881.
    28. Edward E Leamer & Michael Storper, 2001. "The Economic Geography of the Internet Age," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 32(4), pages 641-665, December.
    29. Alexandra Spitz-Oener, 2006. "Technical Change, Job Tasks, and Rising Educational Demands: Looking outside the Wage Structure," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(2), pages 235-270, April.
    30. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-838, May.
    31. Arellano, M, 1987. "Computing Robust Standard Errors for Within-Groups Estimators," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 49(4), pages 431-434, November.
    32. John E. DiNardo & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 1997. "The Returns to Computer Use Revisited: Have Pencils Changed the Wage Structure Too?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 291-303.
    33. Baumgarten, Daniel, 2009. "International Outsourcing, the Nature of Tasks, and Occupational Stability – Empirical Evidence for Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 108, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    34. Robert Feenstra & Gordon Hanson, 2001. "Global Production Sharing and Rising Inequality: A Survey of Trade and Wages," NBER Working Papers 8372, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    35. Gert G. Wagner & Joachim R. Frick & Jürgen Schupp, 2007. "The German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) – Scope, Evolution and Enhancements," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 127(1), pages 139-169.
    36. Runjuan Liu & Daniel Trefler, 2008. "Much Ado About Nothing: American Jobs and the Rise of Service Outsourcing to China and India," NBER Working Papers 14061, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. repec:got:cegedp:98 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Gagliardi, Luisa & Iammarino, Simona & Rodríguez-Pose, Andrés, 2015. "Offshoring and the Geography of Jobs in Great Britain," CEPR Discussion Papers 10855, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Liu, Runjuan & Trefler, Daniel, 2019. "A sorted tale of globalization: White collar jobs and the rise of service offshoring," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 105-122.
    4. Vallizadeh, Ehsan & Muysken, Joan & Ziesemer, Thomas, 2015. "Offshoring of medium-skill jobs, polarization, and productivity effect : implications for wages and low-skill unemployment," IAB Discussion Paper 201507, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    5. Vallizadeh, Ehsan & Muysken, Joan & Ziesemer, Thomas, 2016. "Offshoring Medium-Skill Tasks, Low-Skill Unemployment and the Skill-Wage Structure," MPRA Paper 75581, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Aleksandra Parteka & Joanna Wolszczak-Derlacz, 2020. "Wage response to global production links: evidence for workers from 28 European countries (2005–2014)," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 156(4), pages 769-801, November.
    7. Semih Akcomak & Henri de Groot & Stefan Groot, 2013. "The impact of trade, offshoring and multinationals on job loss and job finding," CPB Discussion Paper 252, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
    8. Aleksandra Parteka & Joanna Wolszczak-Derlacz, 0. "Wage response to global production links: evidence for workers from 28 European countries (2005–2014)," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 0, pages 1-33.
    9. Koch, Andreas & Brändle, Tobias, 2013. "Outsourcing Potentials and International Tradability of Jobs. Evidence from German Micro-Level Data," VfS Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79727, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    10. Catherine Laffineur & El Mouhoud, 2015. "The jobs at risk from globalization: the French case," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 151(3), pages 477-531, August.
    11. David Hummels & Jakob R. Munch & Chong Xiang, 2018. "Offshoring and Labor Markets," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 56(3), pages 981-1028, September.
    12. Baumgarten, Daniel & Irlacher, Michael & Koch, Michael, 2020. "Offshoring and non-monotonic employment effects across industries in general equilibrium," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 130(C).
    13. Muendler, Marc-Andreas, 2017. "Trade, technology, and prosperity: An account of evidence from a labor-market perspective," WTO Staff Working Papers ERSD-2017-15, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division.
    14. Becker, Sascha O. & Ekholm, Karolina & Muendler, Marc-Andreas, 2013. "Offshoring and the onshore composition of tasks and skills," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 91-106.
    15. Winkler, Erwin, 2020. "Diverging paths: Labor reallocation, sorting, and wage inequality," VfS Annual Conference 2020 (Virtual Conference): Gender Economics 224535, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    16. Geishecker, Ingo & Riedl, Maximilian & Frijters, Paul, 2012. "Offshoring and job loss fears: An econometric analysis of individual perceptions," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 738-747.
    17. Tobias Brändle & Andreas Koch, 2015. "Offshoreability and wages. Evidence from German task data," Economia e Politica Industriale: Journal of Industrial and Business Economics, Springer;Associazione Amici di Economia e Politica Industriale, vol. 42(2), pages 189-216, June.
    18. Thomas Kemeny & David Rigby, 2012. "Trading away what kind of jobs? Globalization, trade and tasks in the US economy," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 148(1), pages 1-16, April.
    19. Jan Hogrefe & Yao Yao, 2016. "Offshoring and labor income risk: an empirical investigation," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 50(3), pages 1045-1063, May.
    20. Semih Akcomak & Henri de Groot & Stefan Groot, 2013. "The impact of trade, offshoring and multinationals on job loss and job finding," CPB Discussion Paper 252.rdf, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
    21. Amador, João & Cabral, Sónia, 2014. "Global value chains: surveying drivers and measures," Working Paper Series 1739, European Central Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    skills; outsourcing; offshoring; tasks; wages;

    JEL classification:

    • F1 - International Economics - - Trade
    • F2 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business
    • J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:iza:izadps:dp4828. 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: (Holger Hinte). General contact details of provider: http://www.iza.org .

    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.