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Power, productivity and profits

  • Peter Skott

    ()

    (University of Massachusetts Amherst)

  • Frederick Guy

    ()

    (Birkbeck College)

New information and communication technologies, we argue, have been 'power-biased': in many industries they have allowed firms to monitor workers more closely, thus reducing the power of these workers. An efficiency wage model shows that 'power-biased technical change' in this sense may generate rising inequality accompanied by an increase in both unemployment and work intensity. JEL Categories: J31, O33

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Paper provided by University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics in its series UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers with number 2007-02.

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Date of creation: Jan 2007
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Handle: RePEc:ums:papers:2007-02
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  1. Francis Green & Steven McIntosh, 1998. "Union power, cost of job loss, and workers' effort," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(3), pages 363-383, April.
  2. Donald Katzner & Peter Skott, 2001. "Economic explanation, ordinality and the adequacy of analytic specification," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(4), pages 437-453.
  3. Peter Skott, 1992. "Imperfect Competition and the Theory of the Falling Rate of Profit," Review of Radical Political Economics, Union for Radical Political Economics, vol. 24(1), pages 101-113, March.
  4. Blanchard, Olivier & Wolfers, Justin, 2000. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages C1-33, March.
  5. Frederick Guy & Peter Skottz, 2005. "Power-Biased Technological Change and the Rise in Earnings Inequality," Working Papers 06, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
  6. Gintis, Herbert & Ishikawa, Tsuneo, 1987. "Wages, work intensity, and unemployment," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 195-228, June.
  7. Hall, Peter A. & Soskice, David (ed.), 2001. "Varieties of Capitalism: The Institutional Foundations of Comparative Advantage," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199247752, March.
  8. Green, Francis & McIntosh, Steven, 2001. "The intensification of work in Europe," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 291-308, May.
  9. Larry W. Hunter & John J. Lafkas, 2003. "Opening the box: Information technology, work practices, and wages," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(2), pages 224-243, January.
  10. Francis Green, 2002. "Why Has Work Effort Become More Intense?," Studies in Economics 0207, School of Economics, University of Kent.
  11. Alfred D. Chandler, 1969. "Strategy and Structure: Chapters in the History of the American Industrial Enterprise," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262530090, June.
  12. Matias Ramirez & Frederick Guy & David Beale, 2007. "Contested Resources: Unions, Employers, and the Adoption of New Work Practices in US and UK Telecommunications," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 45(3), pages 495-517, 09.
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