Employment Polarization and the Role of the Apprenticeship System

University of Zurich, UBS International Center of Economics in Society, Working Paper No. 10

38 Pages Posted: 6 Nov 2014

See all articles by Michelle Rendall

Michelle Rendall

University of Zurich - Department of Economics

Franziska Weiss

University of Zurich - Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: August 2014

Abstract

This paper studies the effects of the apprenticeship system on innovation and labor market polarization. A stylized model with two key features is developed: (1) apprentices are more productive due to industry-specific training, but (2) from the firm’s perspective, when training apprentices, technological innovation is costly since training becomes obsolete. Thus, apprentices correlate with slower adoption of skill-replacing technologies, but also less employment polarization. We test this hypothesis on German regions given local variation in apprenticeship systems until 1976. The results shows no employment polarization related to apprentices, but similar displacement of non-apprentices as in the US.

Keywords: Apprentices, educational system, employment polarization, technology adoption

JEL Classification: E24, J24, O33, R23

Suggested Citation

Rendall, Michelle and Weiss, Franziska, Employment Polarization and the Role of the Apprenticeship System (August 2014). University of Zurich, UBS International Center of Economics in Society, Working Paper No. 10. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2519472 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2519472

Michelle Rendall (Contact Author)

University of Zurich - Department of Economics ( email )

Zürich
Switzerland

Franziska Weiss

University of Zurich - Department of Economics ( email )

Zuerich, 8006
Switzerland

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