Learning By Doing: The Real Connection Between Innovation, Wages, And Wealth

Hardcover | April 28, 2015

byJames BessenOtherGaramond Agency, Inc.

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Today’s great paradox is that we feel the impact of technology everywhere—in our cars, our phones, the supermarket, the doctor’s office—but not in our paychecks. In the past, technological advancements dramatically increased wages, but for three decades now, the median wage has remained stagnant. Machines have taken over much of the work of humans, destroying old jobs while increasing profits for business owners. The threat of ever-widening economic inequality looms, but in Learning by Doing, James Bessen argues that increased inequality is not inevitable.
 
Workers can benefit by acquiring the knowledge and skills necessary to implement rapidly evolving technologies; unfortunately, this can take years, even decades. Technical knowledge is mostly unstandardized and difficult to acquire, learned through job experience rather than in the classroom. As Bessen explains, the right policies are necessary to provide strong incentives for learning on the job. Politically influential interests have moved policy in the wrong direction recently. Based on economic history as well as analysis of today’s labor markets, his book shows a way to restore broadly shared prosperity.

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From the Publisher

Today’s great paradox is that we feel the impact of technology everywhere—in our cars, our phones, the supermarket, the doctor’s office—but not in our paychecks. In the past, technological advancements dramatically increased wages, but for three decades now, the median wage has remained stagnant. Machines have taken over much of the wo...

James Bessen, an economist, is a lecturer at Boston University Law School. He was founder and CEO of a software company that developed the first desktop publishing program.

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Kobo ebook|Aug 1 2009

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:312 pages, 9.25 × 6.13 × 1.06 inPublished:April 28, 2015Publisher:Yale University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0300195664

ISBN - 13:9780300195668

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'Sometimes a book seems to fit so neatly with a reader’s own preconceptions that one does not know whether to say “well done” or be irritated that someone else got there first.  This is one of those books. . . I can only concur:  competence with emerging technology does not require a university diploma.  But it does require an enabling environment.'—Andrew Hilton, Financial World.