The role played by technological change in the economy and in the labor markets, where it generates both winners and losers, has long been object of debate and investigation. The present paper aims to provide an updated picture of the link between technological progress and labor by surveying the recent literature on this subject. Specifically, it organizes the relevant studies according to the wave of technological change under scrutiny and the selected empirical approach, makes comparisons across articles in the same group and derives some tentative findings. Additionally, this work touches upon an emerging line of research on a related topic, namely, the link between technological change and voting choices. From the reviewed literature, it emerges that, all in all, technological change mainly hinders workers who perform routine tasks and who work in firms that did not keep pace with the digital transformation. At the same time, technological change often increases output and productivity, and can also positively affect employment, especially in the case of workers who perform non-routine tasks and of technologically advanced companies. However, the considerable heterogeneity that affects the surveyed studies makes it difficult to draw general and robust conclusions. A meta-analysis would help overcome such limitation.

The evolution of technological change and its impact on workers. A survey of the literature

Jasmine Mondolo
Primo
2020

Abstract

The role played by technological change in the economy and in the labor markets, where it generates both winners and losers, has long been object of debate and investigation. The present paper aims to provide an updated picture of the link between technological progress and labor by surveying the recent literature on this subject. Specifically, it organizes the relevant studies according to the wave of technological change under scrutiny and the selected empirical approach, makes comparisons across articles in the same group and derives some tentative findings. Additionally, this work touches upon an emerging line of research on a related topic, namely, the link between technological change and voting choices. From the reviewed literature, it emerges that, all in all, technological change mainly hinders workers who perform routine tasks and who work in firms that did not keep pace with the digital transformation. At the same time, technological change often increases output and productivity, and can also positively affect employment, especially in the case of workers who perform non-routine tasks and of technologically advanced companies. However, the considerable heterogeneity that affects the surveyed studies makes it difficult to draw general and robust conclusions. A meta-analysis would help overcome such limitation.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11566/301089
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