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Computer, Wages and Working Hours in Italy

Riccardo (Jack) Lucchetti (), Stefano Staffolani () and Alessandro Sterlacchini ()

No 182, Working Papers from Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali

Abstract: This paper provides an estimate of the relationships between wages, working hours and the use of computers at the workplace for the Italian labour market. On the methodological side, we other a contribution on the appropriate procedure for estimating the above effects: it is shown that the simultaneity between wages and hours must be taken into account when specifying the statistical model for the data and, furthermore, that the interactions between explanatory variables plays a significant role that cannot be neglected. Our empirical findings are also of interest: by controlling for computer skill, workers' ability and many other covariates, we found that only for higher-level white collars the average wage premium associated with computer usage is in the same order of magnitude as the one estimated for the US, Germany and France, while the effect vanishes for lower qualifications. The use of computers at work increases the number of hours worked, although this effect is small and much lower than that estimated for the US. Moreover, since hourly wages have a negative impact on hours worked, computers seem to exert little, if any, impact on working time.

JEL-codes: J31 O33 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 24
Date: 2003-05
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