IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/use/tkiwps/1807.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Racing With or Against the Machine? : Evidence from Europe

Author

Listed:
  • Terry Gregory
  • A.M. Salomons
  • Ulrich Zierahn

Abstract

A fast-growing literature shows that digital technologies are displacing labor from routine tasks, raising concerns that labor is racing against the machine. We develop a task-based framework to estimate the aggregate labor demand and employment effects of routine replacing technological change (RRTC), along with the underlying mechanisms. We show that while RRTC has indeed had strong displacement effects in the European Union between 1999 and 2010, it has simultaneously created new jobs through increased product demand, outweighing displacement effects and resulting in net employment growth. However, we also show that this finding depends on the distribution of gains from technological progress

Suggested Citation

  • Terry Gregory & A.M. Salomons & Ulrich Zierahn, 2018. "Racing With or Against the Machine? : Evidence from Europe," Working Papers 18-07, Utrecht School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:use:tkiwps:1807
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://dspace.library.uu.nl/bitstream/handle/1874/369846/18_07.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. David Autor & David Dorn & Lawrence F. Katz & Christina Patterson & John Van Reenen, 2017. "Concentrating on the Fall of the Labor Share," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(5), pages 180-185, May.
    2. Antonczyk, Dirk & Fitzenberger, Bernd & Sommerfeld, Katrin, 2010. "Rising wage inequality, the decline of collective bargaining, and the gender wage gap," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 835-847, October.
    3. Enrico Moretti, 2010. "Local Multipliers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(2), pages 373-377, May.
    4. Francesco Chiacchio & Georgios Petropoulos & David Pichler, 2018. "The impact of industrial robots on EU employment and wages: A local labour market approach," Working Papers 25186, Bruegel.
    5. David Autor & Anna Salomons, 2018. "Is Automation Labor-Displacing? Productivity Growth, Employment, and the Labor Share," NBER Working Papers 24871, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Guy Michaels & Ashwini Natraj & John Van Reenen, 2010. "Has ICT Polarized Skill Demand? Evidence from Eleven Countries over 25 years," NBER Working Papers 16138, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Lawrence F. Katz & Kevin M. Murphy, 1992. "Changes in Relative Wages, 1963–1987: Supply and Demand Factors," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(1), pages 35-78.
    8. David Card & Thomas Lemieux, 2001. "Can Falling Supply Explain the Rising Return to College for Younger Men? A Cohort-Based Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(2), pages 705-746.
    9. David H. Autor & David Dorn & Gordon H. Hanson, 2013. "The China Syndrome: Local Labor Market Effects of Import Competition in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(6), pages 2121-2168, October.
    10. Georg Graetz & Guy Michaels, 2018. "Robots at Work," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 100(5), pages 753-768, December.
    11. Simonovska, Ina & Waugh, Michael E., 2014. "The elasticity of trade: Estimates and evidence," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 34-50.
    12. David H. Autor, 2013. "The "Task Approach" to Labor Markets: An Overview," NBER Working Papers 18711, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Harrison, Rupert & Jaumandreu, Jordi & Mairesse, Jacques & Peters, Bettina, 2014. "Does innovation stimulate employment? A firm-level analysis using comparable micro-data from four European countries," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 29-43.
    14. David H. Autor & David Dorn, 2013. "The Growth of Low-Skill Service Jobs and the Polarization of the US Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(5), pages 1553-1597, August.
    15. Dauth, Wolfgang & Findeisen, Sebastian & Südekum, Jens & Wößner, Nicole, 2017. "German robots - the impact of industrial robots on workers," IAB Discussion Paper 201730, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    16. Guido Matias Cortes & Nir Jaimovich & Christopher J. Nekarda & Henry E. Siu, 2014. "The Micro and Macro of Disappearing Routine Jobs: A Flows Approach," NBER Working Papers 20307, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Brent Neiman, 2014. "The Global Decline of the Labor Share," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(1), pages 61-103.
    18. Moretti, Enrico, 2011. "Local Labor Markets," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 14, pages 1237-1313, Elsevier.
    19. Frank Levy & David H. Autor & Richard J. Murnane, 2003. "The skill content of recent technological change: an empirical exploration," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue nov.
    20. Wolfgang Dauth & Sebastian Findeisen & Jens Suedekum, 2014. "The Rise Of The East And The Far East: German Labor Markets And Trade Integration," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 12(6), pages 1643-1675, December.
    21. Enrico Moretti & Per Thulin, 2013. "Local multipliers and human capital in the United States and Sweden," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(1), pages 339-362, February.
    22. Maarten Goos & Joep Konings & Marieke Vandeweyer, 2015. " Employment Growth in Europe: The Roles of Innovation, Local Job Multipliers and Institutions," Working Papers of Department of Economics, Leuven 547246, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB), Department of Economics, Leuven.
    23. Dauth, Wolfgang, 2014. "Job polarization on local labor markets," IAB Discussion Paper 201418, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    24. Frey, Carl Benedikt & Osborne, Michael A., 2017. "The future of employment: How susceptible are jobs to computerisation?," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 254-280.
    25. Tanja Buch & Silke Hamann & Annekatrin Niebuhr & Anja Rossen, 2014. "What Makes Cities Attractive? The Determinants of Urban Labour Migration in Germany," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 51(9), pages 1960-1978, July.
    26. David H. Autor, 2015. "Why Are There Still So Many Jobs? The History and Future of Workplace Automation," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 29(3), pages 3-30, Summer.
    27. repec:iab:iabjlr:v:46:i:3:p:185-199 is not listed on IDEAS
    28. Alfonso Arpaia & Aron Kiss & Balazs Palvolgyi & Alessandro Turrini, 2016. "Labour mobility and labour market adjustment in the EU," IZA Journal of Migration and Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-21, December.
    29. Maarten Goos & Alan Manning & Anna Salomons, 2014. "Explaining Job Polarization: Routine-Biased Technological Change and Offshoring," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(8), pages 2509-2526, August.
    30. H. Hanson, Gordon, 2005. "Market potential, increasing returns and geographic concentration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 1-24, September.
    31. repec:iza:izawol:journl:y:2015:p:5 is not listed on IDEAS
    32. David H. Autor & David Dorn & Gordon H. Hanson, 2015. "Untangling Trade and Technology: Evidence from Local Labour Markets," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 0(584), pages 621-646, May.
    33. Mion, Giordano, 2004. "Spatial externalities and empirical analysis: the case of Italy," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 97-118, July.
    34. Carol Corrado & David M. Byrne, 2017. "ICT Services and their Prices: What do they tell us about Productivity and Technology?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2017-015, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), revised 20 Oct 2017.
    35. Acemoglu, Daron & Autor, David, 2011. "Skills, Tasks and Technologies: Implications for Employment and Earnings," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 12, pages 1043-1171, Elsevier.
    36. Lorenzo Caliendo & Maximiliano Dvorkin & Fernando Parro, 2015. "The Impact of Trade on Labor Market Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 21149, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    37. Daron Acemoglu & Pascual Restrepo, 2018. "The Race between Man and Machine: Implications of Technology for Growth, Factor Shares, and Employment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 108(6), pages 1488-1542, June.
    38. Raj Chetty & Adam Guren & Day Manoli & Andrea Weber, 2011. "Are Micro and Macro Labor Supply Elasticities Consistent? A Review of Evidence on the Intensive and Extensive Margins," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(3), pages 471-475, May.
    39. Alexandra Spitz-Oener, 2006. "Technical Change, Job Tasks, and Rising Educational Demands: Looking outside the Wage Structure," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(2), pages 235-270, April.
    40. Richard Freeman, 2015. "Who owns the robots rules the world," IZA World of Labor, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), pages 1-5, May.
    41. 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.
    42. Seth G. Benzell & Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Guillermo LaGarda & Jeffrey D. Sachs, 2015. "Robots Are Us: Some Economics of Human Replacement," NBER Working Papers 20941, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    43. Jeffrey D. Sachs & Seth G. Benzell & Guillermo LaGarda, 2015. "Robots: Curse or Blessing? A Basic Framework," NBER Working Papers 21091, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    44. Charlotte Senftleben-König & Hanna Wielandt, 2014. "The Polarization of Employment in German Local Labor Markets," Working Papers 2014007, Berlin Doctoral Program in Economics and Management Science (BDPEMS).
    45. Joel Mokyr & Chris Vickers & Nicolas L. Ziebarth, 2015. "The History of Technological Anxiety and the Future of Economic Growth: Is This Time Different?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 29(3), pages 31-50, Summer.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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


    Cited by:

    1. Rauf Gönenç & Béatrice Guérard, 2017. "Austria’s digital transition: The diffusion challenge," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1430, OECD Publishing.
    2. Daron Acemoglu & Pascual Restrepo, 2018. "Low-Skill and High-Skill Automation," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 12(2), pages 204-232.
    3. Daron Acemoglu & Pascual Restrepo, 2017. "Robots and Jobs: Evidence from US Labor Markets," Boston University - Department of Economics - The Institute for Economic Development Working Papers Series dp-297, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    4. Gunther Tichy, 2016. "Geht der Arbeitsgesellschaft die Arbeit aus?," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 89(12), pages 853-871, December.
    5. Cortes, Guido Matias & Jaimovich, Nir & Siu, Henry E., 2017. "Disappearing routine jobs: Who, how, and why?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 69-87.
    6. Julia Bock-Schappelwein & Michael Böheim & Elisabeth Christen & Stefan Ederer & Matthias Firgo & Klaus S. Friesenbichler & Werner Hölzl & Mathias Kirchner & Angela Köppl & Agnes Kügler & Christine May, 2018. "Politischer Handlungsspielraum zur optimalen Nutzung der Vorteile der Digitalisierung für Wirtschaftswachstum, Beschäftigung und Wohlstand," WIFO Studies, WIFO, number 61256, February.
    7. Janssen, Simon & Mohrenweiser, Jens, 2018. "The Shelf Life of Incumbent Workers during Accelerating Technological Change: Evidence from a Training Regulation Reform," IZA Discussion Papers 11312, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    8. Cords, Dario & Prettner, Klaus, 2018. "Technological unemployment revisited: Automation in a search and matching framework," Hohenheim Discussion Papers in Business, Economics and Social Sciences 19-2018, University of Hohenheim, Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences.
    9. Luís Guimarães & Pedro Mazeda Gil, 2019. "Explaining the labor share: automation vs labor market institutions," CEF.UP Working Papers 1901, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
    10. Andreas Pyka, 2017. "Dedicated innovation systems to support the transformation towards sustainability: creating income opportunities and employment in the knowledge-based digital bioeconomy," Journal of Open Innovation: Technology, Market, and Complexity, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(4), pages 1-18, December.
    11. Guyonne Kalb & Jordy Meekes, 2019. "Wage Growth Distribution and Decline among Individuals: 2001-2017," RBA Annual Conference Papers acp2019-03, Reserve Bank of Australia, revised Jul 2019.
    12. Juan Ramón GARCÍA, 2018. "Galicia Ante Reto De La Automatización Del Trabajo," Revista Galega de Economía, University of Santiago de Compostela. Faculty of Economics and Business., vol. 27(3), pages 17-28.
    13. Dauth, Wolfgang, 2014. "Job polarization on local labor markets," IAB Discussion Paper 201418, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    14. Arntz, Melanie & Gregory, Terry & Zierahn, Ulrich, 2019. "Digitalization and the future of work: Macroeconomic consequences," ZEW Discussion Papers 19-024, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    15. Guimarães, Luis & Gil, Pedro, 2019. "Looking ahead at the effects of automation in an economy with matching frictions," MPRA Paper 96238, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Pietro Santoleri, 2019. "Innovation and job creation in (high-growth) new firms," LEM Papers Series 2019/31, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    17. Ortega, Andrés & Otero-Iglesias, Miguel & Steinberg, Federico, 2017. "A globalisation challenge: Preventing a clash between the middle classes of the developed and emerging economies," Economics Discussion Papers 2017-106, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    18. repec:nbr:nberch:14019 is not listed on IDEAS
    19. Thomsen, Stephan L, 2018. "Die Rolle der Computerisierung und Digitalisierung für Beschäftigung und Einkommen," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-645, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
    20. Christine Mayrhuber & Julia Bock-Schappelwein, 2018. "Digitalisierung und soziale Sicherheit," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 91(12), pages 891-897, December.
    21. Arntz, Melanie & Gregory, Terry & Zierahn, Ulrich, 2017. "Revisiting the risk of automation," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 159(C), pages 157-160.
    22. Kovács, Olivér, 2017. "Az ipar 4.0 komplexitása - II
      [The Complexity of Industry 4.0 - Part 2]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(9), pages 970-987.
    23. Aepli, Manuel, 2019. "Technological change and occupation mobility: A task-based approach to horizontal mismatch," GLO Discussion Paper Series 361, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    24. Ben Vermeulen & Jan Kesselhut & Andreas Pyka & Pier Paolo Saviotti, 2018. "The Impact of Automation on Employment: Just the Usual Structural Change?," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 10(5), pages 1-27, May.
    25. Davide Consoli & Mabel Sánchez-Barrioluengo, 2016. "Polarization and the growth of low-skill employment in Spanish Local Labor Markets," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1628, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Nov 2016.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labor Demand; Employment; Routine-Replacing Technological Change; Tasks; Local Demand Spillovers; T;

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    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:use:tkiwps:1807. 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: (Marina Muilwijk). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/eiruunl.html .

    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.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with 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.