IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Demand for Skills 1995-2008: A Global Supply Chain Perspective


  • Bart Los

    (University of Groningen)

  • Marcel P. Timmer

    (University of Groningen)

  • Gaaitzen J. De Vries

    (University of Groningen)


We propose a new method to analyse the changing skills structure of employment in countries based on the input-output structure of the world economy. Demand for jobs, characterized by skill type and industry of employment, is driven by changes in technology, trade and consumption. Using structural decomposition analysis, we study the relative importance of these drivers for the period 1995-2008. In doing so, we derive a new measure of technological change in vertically integrated production chains and show that it has been skill-biased. We find that skill-biased technological change has played the most important role in the different employment growth rates of high-skilled, medium-skilled and low-skilled labour in advanced countries. For emerging countries, the patterns of employment growth are very heterogeneous. Analyse de l'évolution de la demande de compétences entre 1995 et 2008 sous l'angle des chaînes d'approvisionnement mondiales Nous proposons une nouvelle méthode pour étudier l’évolution de la structure de l’emploi en termes de compétences dans les pays, qui s’appuie sur une analyse entrées-sorties de l’économie mondiale. La demande d’emplois, selon le type de compétences et le secteur d’activité, est tirée par l’évolution des technologies, des échanges et de la consommation. À partir d’une analyse par décomposition structurelle, nous examinons le poids relatif de chacun de ces moteurs sur la période 1995-2008. Nous obtenons ainsi une nouvelle mesure du progrès technologique dans les chaînes de production intégrées verticalement, qui montre que le progrès technologique privilégie les qualifications. Nous estimons que, dans les pays avancés, c’est ce phénomène qui permet en premier lieu d’expliquer les différences entre les taux de croissance de l’emploi des travailleurs hautement qualifiés, moyennement qualifiés et peu qualifiés. Dans les pays émergents, les taux de croissance de l’emploi sont très variables.

Suggested Citation

  • Bart Los & Marcel P. Timmer & Gaaitzen J. De Vries, 2014. "The Demand for Skills 1995-2008: A Global Supply Chain Perspective," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1141, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:1141-en

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. de Vries, Gaaitzen J. & Ferrarini, Benno, 2017. "What Accounts for the Growth of Carbon Dioxide Emissions in Advanced and Emerging Economies? The Role of Consumption, Technology and Global Supply Chain Participation," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 132(C), pages 213-223.
    2. Bertulfo, Donald Jay & Gentile, Elisabetta & de Vries , Gaaitzen J., 2019. "The Employment Effects of Technological Innovation, Consumption, and Participation in Global Value Chains: Evidence from Developing Asia," ADB Economics Working Paper Series 572, Asian Development Bank.

    More about this item


    chaînes d’approvisionnement mondiales; demand for skills; demande de compétences; global supply chains; progrès technologique; tableaux entrées-sorties; technological change; trade; world input–output tables; échanges;

    JEL classification:

    • D57 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Input-Output Tables and Analysis
    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • F66 - International Economics - - Economic Impacts of Globalization - - - Labor

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    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:oec:ecoaaa:1141-en. 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: (). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.