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Employment polarization and the role of the apprenticeship system


Rendall, Michelle; Weiss, Franziska J (2016). Employment polarization and the role of the apprenticeship system. European Economic Review, 82:166-186.

Abstract

This paper studies the effect of apprenticeship training on technology adoption and labor market polarization. A stylized model with two key features is developed: (1) apprentices are more productive due to industry-specific training, but (2) from the firm׳s perspective, when training apprentices, technological innovation is costly since training becomes obsolete. Thus, apprentices correlate with slower adoption of skill-replacing technologies, but also less employment polarization. We test this hypothesis on German regions given local variation in apprenticeship systems until 1976. The results show little computer adoption and no employment polarization related to apprentices, but similar displacement of non-apprentices by computers as in the US.

Abstract

This paper studies the effect of apprenticeship training on technology adoption and labor market polarization. A stylized model with two key features is developed: (1) apprentices are more productive due to industry-specific training, but (2) from the firm׳s perspective, when training apprentices, technological innovation is costly since training becomes obsolete. Thus, apprentices correlate with slower adoption of skill-replacing technologies, but also less employment polarization. We test this hypothesis on German regions given local variation in apprenticeship systems until 1976. The results show little computer adoption and no employment polarization related to apprentices, but similar displacement of non-apprentices by computers as in the US.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Uncontrolled Keywords:Apprentices, educational system, employment polarization, technology adoption
Language:English
Date:February 2016
Deposited On:23 Feb 2016 14:06
Last Modified:30 Apr 2016 07:54
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0014-2921
Free access at:Related URL. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.euroecorev.2015.11.004
Related URLs:http://www.zora.uzh.ch/100310/
http://www.zora.uzh.ch/93292/

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