Skip to main content

Education, Skills, and Technical Change

Implications for Future US GDP Growth

Over the past few decades, US business and industry have been transformed by the advances and redundancies produced by the knowledge economy. The workplace has changed, and much of the work differs from that performed by previous generations. Can human capital accumulation in the United States keep pace with the evolving demands placed on it, and how can the workforce of tomorrow acquire the skills and competencies that are most in demand?

Education, Skills, and Technical Change explores various facets of these questions and provides an overview of educational attainment in the United States and the channels through which labor force skills and education affect GDP growth. Contributors to this volume focus on a range of educational and training institutions and bring new data to bear on how we understand the role of college and vocational education and the size and nature of the skills gap. This work links a range of research areas—such as growth accounting, skill development, higher education, and immigration—and also examines how well students are being prepared for the current and future world of work.


"The chapters in this book explore both broadly and in depth some of the hot topics in education within the field of economics, and with a focus on how these may have an impact on future US growth. The macroeconomic literature on the sources of growth has acknowledged the importance of human capital in the generation of growth, with a shift in focus to study mechanisms of that growth accumulation. This is studied mostly in the microeconomic literature on education and human capital formation. Different from other existing works, the authors in this book study in detail different aspects of skill supply and demand at the microeconomic level, but, more importantly, they draw out the implications for the future of macroeconomic growth. While there are many topics that are yet to be explored, this book constitutes a good spring-board for economists of education to continue their discussions."

Economic Record

Table of Contents

Prefatory Note
Charles R. Hulten and Valerie A. Ramey
I. The Macroeconomic Link between Education and Real GDP Growth
1. Educational Attainment and the Revival of US Economic Growth
Dale W. Jorgenson, Mun S. Ho, and Jon D. Samuels
2. The Outlook for US Labor-Quality Growth
Canyon Bosler, Mary C. Daly, John G. Fernald, and Bart Hobijn
Comment on Chapters 1 and 2: Douglas W. Elmendorf
3. The Importance of Education and Skill Development for Economic Growth in the Information Era
Charles R. Hulten
II. Jobs and Skills Requirements
4. Underemployment in the Early Careers of College Graduates following the Great Recession
Jaison R. Abel and Richard Deitz
5. The Requirements of Jobs: Evidence from a Nationally Representative Survey
Maury Gittleman, Kristen Monaco, and Nicole Nestoriak
III. Skills, Inequality, and Polarization
6. Noncognitive Skills as Human Capital
Shelly Lundberg
Comment: David J. Deming
7. Wage Inequality and Cognitive Skills: Reopening the Debate
Stijn Broecke, Glenda Quintini, and Marieke Vandeweyer
Comment: Frank Levy
8. Education and the Growth-Equity Trade-Off
Eric A. Hanushek
9. Recent Flattening in the Higher Education Wage Premium: Polarization, Skill Downgrading, or Both?
Robert G. Valletta
Comment: David Autor
IV. The Supply of Skills
10. Accounting for the Rise in College Tuition
Grey Gordon and Aaron Hedlund
Comment: Sandy Baum
11. Online Postsecondary Education and Labor Productivity
Caroline M. Hoxby
Comment: Nora Gordon
12. High-Skilled Immigration and the Rise of STEM Occupations in US Employment
Gordon H. Hanson and Matthew J. Slaughter
Comment: John Bound
Author Index
Subject Index

Be the first to know

Get the latest updates on new releases, special offers, and media highlights when you subscribe to our email lists!

Sign up here for updates about the Press