Does Future Pc Use Determine Our Wages Today? Evidence from German Panel Data

19 Pages Posted: 15 Feb 2002

See all articles by Silke Anger

Silke Anger

Humboldt University of Berlin - Faculty of Business

Johannes Schwarze

University of Bamberg; German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: February 2002

Abstract

Using 1985-1999 data from the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (GSOEP) to analyze wages confirms the hypothesis that existing computer wage premiums are determined by individual ability or other unobserved individual characteristics rather than by productivity effects. While a rather large personal computer (PC) wage premium was found in the cross-sectional regressions even after the inclusion of standard controls, the conventional longitudinal regression analysis revealed substantially lower or statistically insignificant coefficients, as have other studies. In addition, a new method of testing the two competing explanations for computer wage differentials against each other was found: future PC variables were employed in the wage regressions in order to obtain a further control for worker heterogeneity. The finding that future PC variables have a statistically significant effect on current wages leads one to conclude that computer wage differentials can be attributed to worker heterogeneity rather than to computer-induced productivity.

Keywords: Computer Wage Premium, Future Computer Usage, Unobserved Ability, Technological Change

JEL Classification: J31, O33, C23

Suggested Citation

Anger, Silke and Schwarze, Johannes, Does Future Pc Use Determine Our Wages Today? Evidence from German Panel Data (February 2002). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=300645

Silke Anger

Humboldt University of Berlin - Faculty of Business ( email )

Spandauer Str. 1
Berlin, D-10178
Germany

Johannes Schwarze (Contact Author)

University of Bamberg ( email )

Kirschaeckerstrasse 39
Bamberg 96045
Germany
+49 951 863 2600 (Phone)
+49 951 863 5569 (Fax)

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)

Mohrenstra├če 58
Berlin, 10117
Germany

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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