Return of the Solow Paradox? It, Productivity, and Employment in U.S. Manufacturing
23 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2014 Last revised: 15 Sep 2021
Date Written: January 2014
An increasingly influential "technological-discontinuity" paradigm suggests that IT-induced technological changes are rapidly raising productivity while making workers redundant. This paper explores the evidence for this view among the IT-using U.S. manufacturing industries. There is some limited support for more rapid productivity growth in IT-intensive industries depending on the exact measures, though not since the late 1990s. Most challenging to this paradigm, and our expectations, is that output contracts in IT-intensive industries relative to the rest of manufacturing. Productivity increases, when detectable, result from the even faster declines in employment.
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