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Theory and Measurement of Modern Transition

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  • Hyeok Jeong
  • Yong Kim

Abstract

The process of modernization is neither instantaneous nor homogeneous across countries. Given the large productivity growth gap between traditional and modern sectors, the gradual and varying degree of transition between these technologies seems puzzling. We develop a theory of transition that resolves this puzzle. The key forces are sector-specific complementarity between work-experience and labor, and exogenous technical progress present only in the modern sector. Using nationally representative micro data from the Socio-Economic Survey of Thailand (1976-1996), we measure the theory by estimating cross-sectional earnings functions, and assess if the model captures the observed dynamics of transition. The model jointly explains the gradual and S-shaped transition, stagnant growth of aggregate earnings, and the rise and fall of experience-earnings profiles in Thailand.

Suggested Citation

  • Hyeok Jeong & Yong Kim, 2005. "Theory and Measurement of Modern Transition," IEPR Working Papers 05.31, Institute of Economic Policy Research (IEPR).
  • Handle: RePEc:scp:wpaper:05-31
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Modern Transition; Sector-Specific Complementarity; TFP and Inequality;

    JEL classification:

    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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