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Trade, knowledge, and the industrial revolution

Author: Kevin H O'Rourke; Ahmed S Rahman; Alan M Taylor; National Bureau of Economic Research.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : National Bureau of Economic Research, 2007.
Series: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 13057.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Technological change was unskilled-labor-biased during the early Industrial Revolution of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, but is skill-biased today. This fact is not embedded in extant unified growth models. We develop a model of the transition to sustained economic growth which can endogenously account for both these facts, by allowing the factor bias of technological innovations to reflect the  Read more...
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Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Kevin H O'Rourke; Ahmed S Rahman; Alan M Taylor; National Bureau of Economic Research.
OCLC Number: 123414714
Description: 1 online resource (1 volume).
Series Title: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 13057.
Responsibility: Kevin H. O'Rourke, Ahmed S. Rahman, Alan M. Taylor.

Abstract:

Technological change was unskilled-labor-biased during the early Industrial Revolution of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, but is skill-biased today. This fact is not embedded in extant unified growth models. We develop a model of the transition to sustained economic growth which can endogenously account for both these facts, by allowing the factor bias of technological innovations to reflect the profit-maximising decisions of innovators. Endowments dictated that the initial stages of the Industrial Revolution be unskilled-labor biased. The transition to skill-biased technological change was due to a growth in "Baconian knowledge" and international trade. Simulations show that the model does a good job of tracking reality, at least until the mass education reforms of the late nineteenth century.

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