Skip to main content

Journal article

Technology and changes in skill structure: evidence from seven OECD countries

This paper compares the changing skill structure of wage bills and employment in the United States with six other OECD countries (Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Sweden, and the United Kingdom). We investigate whether a directly observed measure of technical change (R&D intensity) is closely linked to the growth in the importance of more highly skilled workers which has occurred in all countries. Evidence of a significant association between skill upgrading and R&D intensity is uncovered in all seven countries. These results provide evidence that skill-biased technical change is an international phenomenon that has had a clear effect of increasing the relative demand for skilled workers.

Stephen Machin and John Van Reenen

1 November 1998

The Quarterly Journal of Economics 113(4) , pp.1215-1244, 1998

DOI: 10.1162/003355398555883

This Journal article is published under the centre's Labour markets programme, Education and skills programme.