Is Technological Change Really Skill Biased? Evidence from the Introduction of ICTs on the Textile Sector (1980-2000)
University of Siena - Dipartimento di Economia Politica; University of Siena
University of Siena
Università di Siena Working Paper No. 465
This paper investigates the effects of the introduction of information and communication technologies (ICTs) on the skills of a workforce. Using micro-data collected from workers in the textile sector, we analyse whether the introduction of ICTs has modified workers' tasks, so that higher skills and longer training periods than before are necessary. Our survey has shown that ICTs i) have replaced unskilled labour in some cases and skilled labour in others; ii) have changed workers' tasks in some cases but not in others; and finally, iii) have brought about an increase in skills for only a small number of occupations. This empirical evidence does not confirm the hypothesis that technological change, and in particular change introduced by ICTs, is necessarily skill biased.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 20
Keywords: Technological change, skill bias, textile industry
JEL Classification: O33, L670working papers series
Date posted: April 22, 2008
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