nep-tid New Economics Papers
on Technology and Industrial Dynamics
Issue of 2020‒01‒27
thirteen papers chosen by
Fulvio Castellacci
Universitetet i Oslo

  1. Climate policies and skill-biased employment dynamics : Evidence from EU countries By Giovanni Marin; Francesco Vona
  2. New Technology and Emerging Occupations: Evidence from Asia By Khatiwada , Sameer; Veloso, Mia Kim
  3. Aging labor, ICT capital, and productivity in Japan and Korea By Jong-Wha Lee; Do Won Kwak; Eunbi Song
  4. A Human Capital Theory of Structural Transformation By Max Gillman
  5. Effects of multilevel policy mix of public R&D subsidies: Empirical evidence from Japanese local SMEs By Okamuro, Hiroyuki; Nishimura, Junichi
  6. ICT and productivity growth within value chains By Liu, Chuan; Saam, Marianne
  7. Debunking the granular origins of aggregate fluctuations : from real business cycles back to Keynes By Giovanni Dosi; Mauro Napoletano; Andrea Roventini; Tania Treibich
  8. From Micro to Macro: A Note on the Analysis of Aggregate Productivity Dynamics Using Firm-Level Data By Carlos Robalo Marques; Daniel A. Dias
  9. The Illusions of Calculating Total Factor Productivity and Testing Growth Models: From Cobb–Douglas to Solow and Romer By Felipe , Jesus; McCombie, John
  10. Rising Import Tariffs, Falling Export Growth: When Modern Supply Chains Meet Old-Style Protectionism By Kyle Handley; Fariha Kamal; Ryan Monarch
  11. Latin America’s faltering manufacturing competitiveness: what role for intermediate services? By Avendano, Rolando; Bontadini, Filippo; Mulder, Nanno; Zaclicever, Dayna
  12. Economic Complexity: why we like "Complexity weighted diversification" By Luciano Pietronero; Andrea Gabrielli; Andrea Zaccaria
  13. Mining the Automotive Industry: A Network Analysis of Corporate Positioning and Technological Trends By Niklas Stoehr; Fabian Braesemann; Michael Frommelt; Shi Zhou

  1. By: Giovanni Marin (Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo); Francesco Vona (Observatoire français des conjonctures économiques)
    Abstract: The political acceptability of climate policies is undermined by job-killing arguments, especially for the least-skilled workers. However, evidence of the distributional impacts for different workers remains scant. We examine the associations between climate policies, proxied by energy prices, and workforce skills for 14 European countries and 15 industrial sectors over the period 1995–2011. Using a shift-share instrumental variable estimator and controlling for the influence of automation and globalization, we find that climate policies have been skill biased against manual workers and have favoured technicians. The long-term change in energy prices accounted for between 9.2% and 17.5% (resp. 4.2% and 8.0%) of the increase (resp. decrease) in the share of technicians (resp. manual workers).
    Keywords: Climate policies; Workforce skills; Employment impact; Cluster analysis; Energy prices; Shift-share instruments
    JEL: J42 Q52
    Date: 2019–11
  2. By: Khatiwada , Sameer (Asian Development Bank); Veloso, Mia Kim (Asian Development Bank)
    Abstract: One of the less well-understood channels through which technology affects labor market outcomes is the creation of new types of work. In this paper, we investigate the emergence of new occupations by comparing various classifications of occupations and predicting probabilities to access them given workers’ characteristics. Systematic comparisons of successive lists of National Classification of Occupations in India, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Viet Nam find that most new job titles are primarily information and communication technology- and data-related positions within professional and associate professional occupational divisions. When utilizing microdata of India and Viet Nam, we find that emerging occupations, defined as occupation groups with new job titles, pay higher wages than nonemerging occupations. Further, when using logit models to predict chances of accessing emerging occupations given workers’ characteristics, the probability of success is greater for workers who are male, tertiary educated, urbanized, and employed in the service sectors. Adjusted predictions by education and sector show that access to emerging occupations is highest among tertiary-educated workers in services, and that chances of success vary greatly across different age groups.
    Keywords: industries; innovation; new work; occupations
    JEL: J21 J23 J24 O14 O33
    Date: 2019–04–12
  3. By: Jong-Wha Lee; Do Won Kwak; Eunbi Song
    Abstract: This study examines how aging affects labor productivity using industry-level data of Japan and Korea. The analysis shows that, for both Japan and Korea, aging has positive effects on labor productivity when older workers are working in industries with a large share of information and communication technology (ICT) in the capital stock. We also find that, on average, older workers exert positive effects on labor productivity across all industries when they are low-educated in Japan and high-educated in Korea. In addition, a complementary effect between ICT capital and older workers is observed for both high- and low-educated workers in Japan but only for low-educated workers in Korea. We discuss the interplay among educational attainment, industry characteristics, and production techniques to explain the differences between the two countries in the productivity of their older workers.
    Keywords: aging, ICT capital, productivity, Japan, Korea
    JEL: J11 J14 O41 O47 O53
    Date: 2020–01
  4. By: Max Gillman
    Abstract: The paper presents a human capital based theory of the sectoral transformation along the balanced growth path equilibrium. Allowing a small upward trend in the productivity of the human capital sector, combined with di§erential human capital intensity and constant productivity across sectors, output gradually shifts over time from relatively less human capital intensive sectors towards more human capital intensive sectors. Sectors intensive in the factor that is becoming relatively more plentiful find their relative prices falling, their "effective productivities" rising at di§erential rates inversely to their relative price decline, and their relative outputs expanding. Adding more sectors of greater human capital intensity causes labor time to decrease across existing sectors, and by relatively more in the least human capital sectors. literature.
    Keywords: human capital intensity; sectoral allocation; labor shares; productivity; technological change; neoclassical; optimal growth model
    JEL: E13 J24 O11 O14 O33 O41
    Date: 2019–12
  5. By: Okamuro, Hiroyuki; Nishimura, Junichi
    Abstract: Regional innovation policies have been implemented in several countries. In Japan, the controlled decentralization of traditionally centralized innovation policy is ongoing. Thus, we can observe the multilevel policy mix of public R&D (research and development) subsidies by national, prefecture, and city governments. However, empirical studies on multilevel R&D support, using panel data and considering the municipality level, are scarce. Based on original survey data and on the financial data for manufacturing SMEs (small and medium sized enterprises), we estimate their TFP (total factor productivity) and we empirically investigate the effects of public R&D subsidies by national, prefecture, and city governments. We employ firm-level fixed effect panel estimation to control for the effects of any unobservable time-invariant factors. We find that, with a two year lag, city and prefecture subsidies show positive and significant effects on TFP, which also persisted after the subsidy period. However, multilevel subsidies, especially those involving city subsidies, additionally and persistently increase recipients’ TFP. These results suggest significant advantages for the multilevel policy mix, especially those involving the city subsidy.
    Keywords: R&D subsidy, local authority, multilevel policy mix, SMEs, policy evaluation
    JEL: H71 O38 R58
    Date: 2020–01
  6. By: Liu, Chuan; Saam, Marianne
    Abstract: To what extent have economies become better off because of the diffusion of information and communication technologies (ICT)? We analyze this question based on a growth accounting approach at the level of final output. This approach traces productivity improvements not within sectors but within value chains. It allows judging in a better way to what extent more or better products have become available to final users, in particular consumers, as a result of the diffusion of ICT. A main result is that more than half of the productivity gains related to ICT capital deepening for manufactured goods are contributed by upstream industries. The major part of this contribution is domestic rather than foreign. Moreover, the high sectoral growth in total factor productivity (TFP) in the ICT sector contributes only moderately to TFP growth in non-ICT value chains via the use of intermediates.
    Keywords: ICT,economic growth,productivity,value chains,growth accounting
    JEL: E22 F62 O47
    Date: 2019
  7. By: Giovanni Dosi (Laboratory of Economics and Management); Mauro Napoletano (Observatoire français des conjonctures économiques); Andrea Roventini (Observatoire français des conjonctures économiques); Tania Treibich (Observatoire français des conjonctures économiques)
    Abstract: In this work we study the granular origins of business cycles and their possible underlying drivers. As shown by Gabaix (Econometrica 79:733–772, 2011), the skewed nature of firm size distributions implies that idiosyncratic (and independent) firm-level shocks may account for a significant portion of aggregate volatility. Yet, we question the original view grounded on “supply granularity”, as proxied by productivity growth shocks – in line with the Real Business Cycle framework–, and we provide empirical evidence of a “demand granularity”, based on investment growth shocks instead. The role of demand in explaining aggregate fluctuations is further corroborated by means of a macroeconomic Agent-Based Model of the “Schumpeter meeting Keynes” family Dosi et al. (J Econ Dyn Control 52:166–189, 2015). Indeed, the investigation of the possible microfoundation of RBC has led us to the identification of a sort of microfounded Keynesian multiplier.
    Keywords: Business cycles; Granular residual; Granularity hypothesis; Agent-based models; Firm dynamics ; Productivity growth; Investment growth
    JEL: C63 E12 E22 E32 O4
    Date: 2019–03
  8. By: Carlos Robalo Marques; Daniel A. Dias
    Abstract: In the empirical literature, the analysis of aggregate productivity dynamics using firm-level productivity has mostly been based on changes in the mean of log-productivity. This paper shows that there can be substantial quantitative and qualitative differences in the results relative to when the analysis is based on changes in the mean of productivity, and discusses the circumstances under which such differences are likely to happen . We use firm-level data for Portugal for the period 2006-2015 to illustrate the point. When the mean of productivity is used, we estimate that TFP and labor productivity for the whole economy increased by 17.7 percent and 5.2 percent, respectively, over this period. But, when the mean of log-productivity is used, we estimate that these two productivity measures declined by 4.3 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively. Similarly disparate results are obtained for productivity decompositions regarding the contributions for productivity growth of surviving, entering and exiting rms.
    JEL: D24 E32 L25 O47
    Date: 2019
  9. By: Felipe , Jesus (Asian Development Bank); McCombie, John (University of Cambridge)
    Abstract: This paper shows that because growth models in the tradition of Solow’s and Romer’s are framed in terms of production functions, they are equally subject to a criticism developed by, among others, Phelps Brown (1957), Simon (1979a), and Samuelson (1979). These authors argued that production function estimations are flawed exercises. The reason is that the series of output, labor, and capital stock used are definitionally related through an accounting identity. Consequently, the identity predetermines the estimates that regressions yield. We show that the identity argument helps demystify two illusions in the literature: (i) finding the Holy Grail: total factor productivity is, by construction, a weighted average of dollars per worker and a pure number (the rate of profit or the rental rate of capital); and (ii) the possibility of testing: if estimated properly, production function regressions will yield: (a) a very high fit, potentially an of unity; and (b) estimated factor elasticities equal to the factor shares, hence they must always add up to 1. We illustrate these points by discussing a series of well-known growth accounting exercises and models directly derived from production functions. They are merely tautologies. We conclude that we know substantially less than we think about growth and that many of the discussions in the growth literature are Kuhnian puzzles that only make sense within the neoclassical growth model paradigm.
    Keywords: accounting identity; Cobb–Douglas; dual TFP; growth accounting; primal TFP; production function; Romer; Solow
    JEL: E22 E23 E25 O11 O33 O47
    Date: 2019–10–28
  10. By: Kyle Handley; Fariha Kamal; Ryan Monarch
    Abstract: We examine the impacts of the 2018-2019 U.S. import tariff increases on U.S. export growth through the lens of supply chain linkages. Using 2016 confidential firm-trade linked data, we document the implied incidence and scope of new import tariffs. Firms that eventually faced tariff increases on their imports accounted for 84% of all exports and represented 65% of manufacturing employment. For all affected firms, the implied cost is $900 per worker in new duties. To estimate the effect on U.S. export growth, we construct product-level measures of import tariff exposure of U.S. exports from the underlying firm micro data. More exposed products experienced 2 percentage point lower growth relative to products with no exposure. The decline in exports is equivalent to an ad valorem tariff on U.S. exports of almost 2% for the typical product and almost 4% for products with higher than average exposure.
    Keywords: Global supply chains; tariffs; trade war; U.S. exports
    JEL: F1 F13 F14 F23 H2
    Date: 2020–01
  11. By: Avendano, Rolando; Bontadini, Filippo; Mulder, Nanno; Zaclicever, Dayna
    Abstract: This document contributes to the scarce empirical literature on the role of services as a source of manufacturing competitiveness in developing economies, providing evidence on the Latin American region. We use the 2018 release of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)’s Trade in Value Added (TiVA) database to assess the servicification of manufacturing exports in seven Latin American countries (Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico and Peru) between 2005 and 2015, in comparison with ten Asian emerging economies (eight ASEAN countries (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam), China and India).
    Date: 2020–01–08
  12. By: Luciano Pietronero; Andrea Gabrielli; Andrea Zaccaria
    Abstract: A recent paper by Hausmann and collaborators (1) reaches the important conclusion that Complexity-weighted diversification is the essential element to predict country growth. We like this result because Complexity-weighted diversification is precisely the first equation of the Fitness algorithm that we introduced in 2012 (2,3). However, contrary to what is claimed in (1), it is incorrect to say that diversification is contained also in the ECI algorithm (4). We discuss the origin of this misunderstanding and show that the ECI algorithm contains exactly zero diversification. This is actually one of the reasons for the poor performances of ECI which leads to completely unrealistic results, as for instance, the derivation that Qatar or Saudi Arabia are industrially more competitive than China (5,6). Another important element of our new approach is the representation of the economic dynamics of countries as trajectories in the GDPpc-Fitness space (7-10). In some way also this has been rediscovered by Hausmann and collaborators and renamed as "Stream plots", but, given their weaker metrics and methods, they propose it to use it only for a qualitative insight, while ours led to quantitative and successful forecasting. The Fitness approach has paved the way to a robust and testable framework for Economic Complexity resulting in a highly competitive scheme for growth forecasting (7-10). According to a recent report by Bloomberg (9): The new Fitness method, "systematically outperforms standard methods, despite requiring much less data".
    Date: 2019–12
  13. By: Niklas Stoehr; Fabian Braesemann; Michael Frommelt; Shi Zhou
    Abstract: The digital transformation is driving revolutionary innovations and new market entrants threaten established sectors of the economy such as the automotive industry. Following the need for monitoring shifting industries, we present a network-centred analysis of car manufacturer web pages. Solely exploiting publicly-available information, we construct large networks from web pages and hyperlinks. The network properties disclose the internal corporate positioning of the three largest automotive manufacturers, Toyota, Volkswagen and Hyundai with respect to innovative trends and their international outlook. We tag web pages concerned with topics like e-mobility and environment or autonomous driving, and investigate their relevance in the network. Sentiment analysis on individual web pages uncovers a relationship between page linking and use of positive language, particularly with respect to innovative trends. Web pages of the same country domain form clusters of different size in the network that reveal strong correlations with sales market orientation. Our approach maintains the web content's hierarchical structure imposed by the web page networks. It, thus, presents a method to reveal hierarchical structures of unstructured text content obtained from web scraping. It is highly transparent, reproducible and data driven, and could be used to gain complementary insights into innovative strategies of firms and competitive landscapes, which would not be detectable by the analysis of web content alone.
    Date: 2019–12

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