Upgrading or polarization? Occupational change in Britain, Germany, Spain and Switzerland, 1990-2008
We analyze the pattern of occupational change over the last two decades in Britain, Germany, Spain and Switzerland: which jobs have been expanding – high-paid jobs, low-paid jobs or both? Based on individual-level data, we examine what hypothesis is most consistent with the observed change: skill-biased technical change, routinization, skill supply evolution or wage-setting institutions? Our analysis reveals massive occupational upgrading that closely matches educational expansion: employment expanded most at the top of the occupational hierarchy, among managers and professionals. In parallel, mid-range occupations (clerks and production workers) declined relative to those at the bottom (interpersonal service workers). This U-shaped pattern of upgrading is consistent with the routinization hypothesis: technology seems a better substitute for average-paid clerical and manufacturing jobs than for low-end service employment. Yet country differences in low-paid service job creation suggest that wage-setting institutions play an important role, channelling technological change into more or less polarized patterns of upgrading.
|Date of creation:||29 Jan 2010|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Ludwigstraße 33, D-80539 Munich, Germany|
Web page: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Freeman, Richard & Schettkat, Ronald, 2001.
"Skill Compression, Wage Differentials, and Employment: Germany vs the US,"
Oxford Economic Papers,
Oxford University Press, vol. 53(3), pages 582-603, July.
- Richard B. Freeman & Ronald Schettkat, 2000. "Skill Compression, Wage Differentials and Employment: Germany vs. the US," NBER Working Papers 7610, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Maarten Goos & Alan Manning, 2003.
"Lousy and Lovely Jobs: the Rising Polarization of Work in Britain,"
CEP Discussion Papers
dp0604, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Maarten Goos & Alan Manning, 2007. "Lousy and Lovely Jobs: The Rising Polarization of Work in Britain," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(1), pages 118-133, February.
- Dustmann, Christian & Ludsteck, Johannes & Schönberg, Uta, 2007.
"Revisiting the German Wage Structure,"
IZA Discussion Papers
2685, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Christian Dustmann & Tommaso Frattini & Ian Preston, 2008.
"The Effect of Immigration along the Distribution of Wages,"
CReAM Discussion Paper Series
0803, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
- Christian Dustmann & Tommaso Frattini & Ian P. Preston, 2013. "The Effect of Immigration along the Distribution of Wages," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(1), pages 145-173.
- Frank Levy & Peter Temin, 2007. "Inequality and Institutions in 20th Century America," NBER Working Papers 13106, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David H. Autor & Frank Levy & Richard J. Murnane, 2003.
"The Skill Content of Recent Technological Change: An Empirical Exploration,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 118(4), pages 1279-1333.
- 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.
- David H. Autor & Frank Levy & Richard J. Murnane, 2001. "The Skill Content of Recent Technological Change: An Empirical Exploration," NBER Working Papers 8337, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Melissa S. Kearney, 2008. "Trends in U.S. Wage Inequality: Revising the Revisionists," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(2), pages 300-323, May.
- Acemoglu, Daron, 2001. "Good Jobs versus Bad Jobs," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(1), pages 1-21, January.
- Paul R. Krugman, 1994.
"Past and prospective causes of high unemployment,"
Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole,
Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue Jan, pages 49-98.
- Kenworthy, Lane, 2002. "Do affluent countries face an income-jobs tradeoff?," MPIfG Discussion Paper 01/10, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies.
- Nickell, Stephen & Bell, Brian, 1996. "Changes in the Distribution of Wages and Unemployment in OECD Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 302-08, May.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:21040. 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: (Joachim Winter)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.