Skills, Exports, and the Wages of Five Million Latin American Workers

39 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Irene Brambilla

Irene Brambilla

Universidad Nacional de La Plata

Rafael Dix-Carneiro

Duke University

Daniel Lederman

World Bank - Latin America and Caribbean Region

Guido G. Porto

World Bank; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: March 1, 2010

Abstract

The returns to schooling or the skill premium is a key parameter in various literatures, including globalization and inequality and international migration. This paper explores the skill premium and its link to exports in Latin America, thus linking the skill premium to the emerging literature on the structure of trade and development. Using data on employment and wages for over five million workers in sixteen Latin American economies, the authors estimate national and industry-specific skill premiums and study some of their determinants. The evidence suggests that both country and industry characteristics are important in explaining skill premiums. The analysis also suggests that the incidence of exports within industries, the average income per capita within countries, and the relative abundance of skilled workers are related to the underlying industry and country characteristics that explain skill premiums. In particular, higher sectoral exports are positively linked with the skill premium at the industry level, a result that supports recent trade models linking exports with wages and the demand for skills.

Keywords: Labor Markets, Water and Industry, Tertiary Education, Labor Policies, Inequality

Suggested Citation

Brambilla, Irene and Dix-Carneiro, Rafael and Lederman, Daniel and Porto, Guido, Skills, Exports, and the Wages of Five Million Latin American Workers (March 1, 2010). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 5246, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1578114

Irene Brambilla (Contact Author)

Universidad Nacional de La Plata ( email )

La Plata, Buenos Aires 1900
Argentina

Rafael Dix-Carneiro

Duke University ( email )

100 Fuqua Drive
Durham, NC 27708-0204
United States

Daniel Lederman

World Bank - Latin America and Caribbean Region ( email )

1818 H Street NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/site/danielledermanworldbank/

Guido Porto

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/gporto

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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