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Class Year

2017

Abstract

Technological progress has significantly changed the inputs and production processes utilized by firms. Such shifts have led to warnings throughout the past few decades that substantial numbers of jobs, particularly things belonging to the middle class, would be eliminated and replaced by technology. This paper examines the validity of this argument by estimating the impact of technology investment on local labor markets during that period. I find evidence for a positive, rather than negative, relationship between technology and employment. Furthermore, my estimates suggest there exists a complementary relationship between technology investment and growth in labor opportunities, rather than a substitution effect of workers moving from technology-intensive industries to non-technology intensive sectors.

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