From blue to steel-collar jobs : The decline in employment gaps?

  • Lerch, Benjamin Istituto di economia politica (IdEP), Facoltà di scienze economiche, Università della Svizzera italiana, Svizzera


English The adoption of labor-replacing technologies has already displaced thousands of workers in the US. In this paper, I analyze how the adverse effects of the implementation of robots in firms’ production processes are spreading among the population and how they are shaping the composition of labor markets. Exploiting exogenous variation in robot exposure across local labor markets and over time, I find that the introduction of industrial robots between the mid-1990s and 2014 contributes to the decline in the gender employment gap but increases the race and ethnicity employment gap. This finding follows from men and racial and ethnic minorities being more exposed to robots because of their over-representation in blue-collar jobs. Despite their predominance in the manufacturing sector, the labor market impacts of robots are not confined to these industries, but spill over also to the service sector.
  • English
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  • RERO DOC 330892
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