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The myth of the service economy

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  • Sergio Parrinello

Abstract

In this article the author, after a critical assessment of the main notions of services developed in economics, presents a revised definition of services based on process analysis. A corresponding distinction is made between material and non-material goods, on the one hand, and services, on the other hand. The proposed definition is applied to extend Sraffa’s theory of prices and to clarify that the expansion of the service activities, as such, is not related to knowledge creation and information diffusion. It is suggested that the dynamics of such non-material factors, instead of being reflected by the change in the relative weights of goods and services, should be assessed on the basis of the change in the tasks and qualities of the labour force.

Suggested Citation

  • Sergio Parrinello, 2002. "The myth of the service economy," Working Papers 55, University of Rome La Sapienza, Department of Public Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:sap:wpaper:wp55
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Gadrey, Jean, 2000. "The Characterization of Goods and Services: An Alternative Approach," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 46(3), pages 369-387, September.
    2. Zvi Griliches, 1992. "Output Measurement in the Service Sectors," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gril92-1, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Services; Process analysis; Classical Economics.;

    JEL classification:

    • B12 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought through 1925 - - - Classical (includes Adam Smith)
    • D46 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Value Theory
    • D57 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Input-Output Tables and Analysis
    • E11 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Marxian; Sraffian; Kaleckian
    • G1 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets
    • L8 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services
    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
    • L94 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Electric Utilities
    • O14 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Industrialization; Manufacturing and Service Industries; Choice of Technology

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