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Contribution Details

Type Working Paper
Scope Discipline-based scholarship
Title Employment polarization and the role of the apprenticeship system
Organization Unit
  • Michelle Rendall
  • Franziska J Weiss
  • German
  • English
Institution University of Zurich
Series Name Working paper series / Department of Economics
Number 141
ISSN 1664-7041
Number of Pages 48
Date 2014
Abstract Text This paper studies the effects of the apprenticeship system on innovation and labor market polarization. A stylized model with two key features is developed: (1) apprentices are more productive due to industry-specific training, but (2) from the firm’s perspective, when training apprentices, technological innovation is costly since training becomes obsolete. Thus, apprentices correlate with slower adoption of skillreplacing technologies, but also less employment polarization. We test this hypothesis on German regions given local variation in apprenticeship systems until 1976. The results shows no employment polarization related to apprentices, but similar displacement of non-apprentices as in the US.
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Keywords Apprentices, educational system, employment polarization, technology adoption, Lehrling, Berufsausbildung, Innovation, Innovationsbereitschaft