NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Ahmed Rahman

Department of Economics
United States Naval Academy
589 McNair Road
Annapolis, MD 21402

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

October 2017Computerization and Immigration: Theory and Evidence from the United States
with Gaetano Basso, Giovanni Peri: w23935
The changes in technology that took place in the US during the last three decades, mainly due to the introduction of computerization and automation, have been characterized as “routine-substituting.” They have reduced the demand for routine tasks, but have increased the demand for analytical tasks. Indirectly they have also increased the demand for manual tasks and service oriented occupations. Little is known about how these changes have impacted immigration, or task specialization between immigrants and natives. In this paper we show that such technological progress has attracted skilled and unskilled immigrants, with the latter group increasingly specialized in manual-service occupations. We also show that the immigration response has helped to reduce the polarization of employment fo...
November 2008Luddites and the Demographic Transition
with Kevin H. O'Rourke, Alan M. Taylor: w14484
Technological change was unskilled-labor-biased during the early Industrial Revolution, but is skill-biased today. This is not embedded in extant unified growth models. We develop a model which can endogenously account for these facts, where factor bias reflects profit-maximizing decisions by innovators. Endowments dictate that the early Industrial Revolution be unskilled-labor-biased. Increasing basic knowledge causes a growth takeoff, an income-led demand for fewer educated children, and the transition to skill-biased technological change. The simulated model tracks British industrialization in the 18th and 19th centuries and generates a demographic transition without relying on either rising skill premia or exogenous educational supply shocks.

Published: Journal of Economic Growth December 2013, Volume 18, Issue 4, pp 373-409 Luddites, the industrial revolution, and the demographic transition Kevin Hjortshøj O’Rourke, Ahmed S. Rahman, Alan M. Taylor

April 2007Trade, Knowledge, and the Industrial Revolution
with Kevin H. O'Rourke, Alan M. Taylor: w13057
Technological change was unskilled-labor-biased during the early Industrial Revolution of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, but is skill-biased today. This fact is not embedded in extant unified growth models. We develop a model of the transition to sustained economic growth which can endogenously account for both these facts, by allowing the factor bias of technological innovations to reflect the profit-maximising decisions of innovators. Endowments dictated that the initial stages of the Industrial Revolution be unskilled-labor biased. The transition to skill-biased technological change was due to a growth in "Baconian knowledge" and international trade. Simulations show that the model does a good job of tracking reality, at least until the mass education reforms of the...
 
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