اثر تجارت شمال و جنوب بر نابرابری دستمزدها و بر انباشت سرمایه انسانی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|18834||2013||12 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||11190 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Economic Modelling, Volume 35, September 2013, Pages 481–492
This paper develops an endogenous growth model with technological knowledge directed towards high- versus low-skilled labour, augmented with North–South international trade of intermediate goods and with human-capital accumulation, to analyse how trade affects wage inequality and the inter-country human-capital gap. Trade is a vehicle for inter-country technological-knowledge diffusion and human-capital accumulation interacts with the intra-country direction of technological knowledge arising from trade. In contrast with the market-size effect, stressed in the skill-biased technological change literature, the operation of the price channel following openness to trade predicts, in line with the recent trends in developed and developing countries, an increasing technological-knowledge bias towards high-skilled human capital. This, in turn, decreases inter-country gaps of technological knowledge and human capital and increases intra-country wage inequality. Also in line with recent empirical evidence, inter-country wage convergence is induced by the trade-opening level effect.
Empirical evidence detects two compelling trends since the early 1980s: (i) rise in wage inequality in favour of high-skilled labour and (ii) rise in the proportion of high-skilled labour, both occurring in developed (North) and developing (South, newly-industrialized) countries, in the context of strong technological-knowledge progress and enlarged intermediate goods trade flows (e.g., Acemoglu, 2003, Avalos and Savvides, 2006, Berman et al., 1998, Egger and Kreickemeier, 2008, Goldberg and Pavcnik, 2007, Machin and van Reenen, 1998, Robertson, 2004 and Zhu and Trefler, 2005). To account for the above empirical facts, we develop an endogenous directed technological-knowledge model with North–South trade and human-capital accumulation. In the model, trade of intermediate goods is a vehicle for inter-country technological-knowledge diffusion and human-capital accumulation interacts with the intra-country direction of technological knowledge arising from trade. The two main approaches in the literature contradict at least one of the mentioned trends. The dominant trade approach (e.g., Leamer, 1998 and Wood, 1995) relies on the labour-level channel through the Stolper–Samuelson theorem; i.e., a decline in the relative price of the imported good reduces the return of the factor that is used intensively in its production; however, applied to the South, it would predict a reduction of the high-skilled labour premium. The technological approach (e.g., Acemoglu, 1998, Acemoglu, 2002 and Acemoglu and Zilibotti, 2001) relies on the market-size channel; i.e., larger high-skilled labour creates a larger demand for R&D biased towards improvements in inputs used in goods produced by high-skilled labour, thus increasing relative high-skilled wages; however, applied to trade with the South (low-skilled abundant), it would predict a reduction of the high-skilled technological-knowledge bias and, thus, of the high-skilled premium in the North. Thus, in these two approaches labour levels govern wage inequality, either in a Heckscher–Ohlian way or through R&D intensity. However, with respect to the latter, and in addition to the described market-size channel, the direction of R&D is also influenced by the price of goods (price channel), since more expensive goods command higher profits for the producers of the respective inputs. For instance, the relative abundance of high-skilled labour increases the competitive price of goods produced by low-skilled labour and, thus, the demand for R&D directed towards improvements in goods produced by low-skilled labour. Pursuing this argument, we merge the technological and the trade approaches, by shifting the focus to the price channel (instead of the market size) (e.g., Afonso, 2006 and Afonso, 2008) and by accounting for technological-knowledge diffusion (e.g., Barro and Sala-i-Martin, 1997 and Grossman and Helpman, 1991), which we deem as non-dissociable from intermediate-good trade (e.g., Amiti and Konings, 2007 and Goldberg et al., 2008). This framework then implies that when the high-skilled labour abundant North exports inputs incorporating its R&D results to a low-skilled abundant South, it benefits from the higher prices of goods produced by high-skilled labour in the South. The resulting profit opportunities redirect R&D towards inputs that increase the marginal productivity and thus wages of high-skilled labour in the North and, under technological-knowledge diffusion, in the South. Furthermore, instead of fixed labour levels, we consider endogenous human-capital accumulation, through both schooling and on-the-job-training (OJT), in line with Lucas (1993) and Mincer (1993). Indeed, most of the empirical evidence points out the complementary nature of schooling and OJT (e.g., Bartel and Litchtenberg, 1987, Brunello, 2004 and OECD, 2001). In particular, high complementarity means that schooling is far from providing all the needed skills, which supports the claims in the growth-human-capital literature that the lack of an empirically robust relationship between human capital and growth is partially caused by the exclusion of OJT (e.g., Lucas, 1993). We assume that, relative to low-skilled, high-skilled human capital is school intensive and is more efficient in production. Final-goods production uses low (or high)-skilled human capital together with low (or high)-specific quality-adjusted intermediate goods (e.g., Acemoglu and Zilibotti, 2001). Innovative Northern R&D improves the quality of intermediate goods — Schumpeterian R&D, as formalized by Aghion and Howitt (1992). The South has a marginal cost advantage in final-goods production and R&D results are imitations of Northern innovations — as in Grossman and Helpman (1991, chs. 11 and 12). In order to focus on the price-channel mechanism, we remove scale effects as suggested by the dominant related literature (e.g., Barro and Sala-i-Martin, 2004, Jones, 1995a and Jones, 1995b). Upon trade opening, human-capital accumulation responds to incentives arising from technological-knowledge diffusion. Due to the immediate access by the South to the technological knowledge embodied in the intermediate goods produced in the North (level effect), wages jump upwards in South. Facing the permanent increase in wages, Southern individuals adjust time allocation, devoting more time to human-capital accumulation of both types along transition. Thus, trade induces inter-country human-capital level convergence. On the other hand, the North–South average relative price of final goods produced by high-skilled human capital is always higher than the one prevailing in pre-trade North. Thus, through the price channel, trade redirects technological knowledge in favour of intermediate goods used with high-skilled human capital, which relatively increases wages of high-skilled workers (high-skilled worker premium; i.e., the relative wage per worker who accumulates high-skilled human capital) in both countries. This then relatively improves the accumulation of high-skilled human capital, thereby increasing its relative supply. Human-capital supply affects wage inequality such that high-skilled worker premium rises even if the high-skilled human capital premium (i.e., the relative wage of high-skilled per unit of human capital) drops, due to the relative rise of high-skilled human capital per worker. Comparative dynamics shows that intra-country high-skilled human capital premium is more likely to prevail under trade when the world accumulation of the Southern relatively abundant type of human capital is enhanced and/or the absolute advantage of high-skilled human capital in final-goods production is improved. Our paper seeks to contribute to a revived literature on trade and wage inequality (e.g., Davidson et al., 2008, Egger and Kreickemeier, 2008, Helpman et al., 2008, Thoenig and Verdier, 2003, Yeaple, 2005 and Zeira, 2007). In particular, our results relate closely to Helpman et al. (2008), Thoenig and Verdier (2003) and Zeira (2007), in as much as the analysis is consistent with empirical findings of increased wage inequality in both developed and developing countries following trade liberalization. However, our model is the only one that brings together human-capital accumulation, technological-knowledge progress (Northern innovation and Southern imitation, induced by the price channel) and inter-country technological-knowledge diffusion through trade. The path followed by prices is supported by empirical studies such as Broda and Romalis (2009) and Krueger (1997). The paper now proceeds to characterise the economic structure and the international market. In Section 3 we analyse the dynamic general equilibrium, we obtain the level, steady-state and transitional dynamics price-channel effects of trade, and we analyse the comparative statics and dynamics resulting from alternative parameters of human-capital accumulation and of final-goods production. In Section 4 we present some concluding remarks.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Empirical evidence detects, in both developed and developing countries since the early 1980s, strong technological-knowledge progress, enlarged intermediate-goods trade flows, increase in wage inequality in favour of high-skilled labour and rise in the share of high-skilled labour. In particular, the recent widening in wage inequality has been attributed by some authors to skill-biased technological change and by others to international trade. By building a North–South technological-knowledge diffusion model, we connect the two explanations within a unified framework and we are able to explain all the above trends. More specifically, in this paper, we highlight the mechanisms, other than market size, through which international trade of intermediate goods incorporating top technological knowledge affects technological-knowledge progress, human-capital accumulation and wage inequality. Such mechanisms, working through the price (of final goods) channel, are better understood if transitional dynamics, as well as comparative steady-state statics and dynamics related to human-capital and final-goods production parameters, are worked out. Our results can be interpreted in the light of the skill-biased technological change literature. In that literature, the bias that causes wage inequality is mainly induced through the market-size channel. In our case, changes in the paths of inter and intra-country wage inequality result also from technological-knowledge bias, but are however induced through the price channel under international trade, conveniently insulated from market-size effects. Summarising the results it can be stated, in general terms, that a process of convergence between countries exists, since technological-knowledge and employed human-capital gaps narrow — i.e., during the transitional dynamics, the South grows at a higher rate than the North, although the growth rate differential falls steadily. In spite of the greater interdependence between countries induced by trade, differences in human-capital levels imply that the convergence in prices is only partial: the Southern relative price of high-technology final goods remains higher. Thus, the North–South average relative price of high-technology final goods is also higher than in the pre-trade North, which increases the relative demand for new high-skilled specific designs. In turn, this boosts the relative worldwide supply of high-skilled specific intermediate goods. Hence, the interdependence between countries and the price channel induce more R&D directed at improving high-skilled specific technological knowledge than in the pre-trade North, which originates more moderate paths for technological-knowledge bias and intra-country wage inequality. In particular, the level effect on the South is reverted and the path of wage inequality is more moderate than in the pre-trade North. Due to level and growth effects, trade strongly benefits the South. However, as a result of the gaps in exogenous productivity and in human capital, the steady-state levels of output and wages remain different between countries. Indeed, although the level effect strongly favours Southern wages, South–North wage differences remain: in (the new) steady state there is maintenance of inter-country wage inequality, since wages grow at the same rate. The comparative dynamics exercise with changes in the parameters of human-capital accumulation and final-goods production also shows that intra-country high-skilled human-capital premium is more likely to prevail under international trade, when such changes enhance: (i) the world accumulation of the type of human capital that is relatively abundant in the South; i.e., low-skilled human capital; and (ii) the absolute advantage of high-skilled human capital over low-skilled human capital in final-goods production.