Technology Adoption and Workforce Skill in U.S. Manufacturing Plants

32 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2004

See all articles by Timothy Dunne

Timothy Dunne

Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland

Kenneth R. Troske

University of Kentucky - Department of Economics; University of Missouri at Columbia - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: December 2004

Abstract

This paper examines the relationship between technology adoption and workforce skill in US manufacturing plants. Using information on the use and adoption of seven different information technologies, we find that the relationship between technology adoption and workforce skill varies across the technologies. Technologies more closely related to engineering and design tasks are associated with more skilled workforces. Technologies more closely related to production activities are not. When we examine the relationship between technology adoption and skill upgrading of workforces, we find little correlation between the use and/or adoption of technologies and changes in workforce skill at the plant level. However, we do find that plants adopting technologies related to engineering and design tasks do grow faster over the period 1987-1997.

Keywords: technology adoption, workforce skill

JEL Classification: J2, O3

Suggested Citation

Dunne, Timothy and Troske, Kenneth R., Technology Adoption and Workforce Skill in U.S. Manufacturing Plants (December 2004). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=634147

Timothy Dunne

Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland ( email )

PO Box 6387
Cleveland, OH 44101-1387
United States

Kenneth R. Troske (Contact Author)

University of Kentucky - Department of Economics ( email )

Lexington, KY 40506
United States

University of Missouri at Columbia - Department of Economics ( email )

118 Professional Building
Columbia, MO 65211
United States
573-882-4229 (Phone)
573-882-2697 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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