Malthusian Agricultural Economies

The repeated waves of automation in manufacturing eliminate—or at least severely reduce the salience of—tasks. Whether those waves amount to "deskilling" on the level of occupations is a subtle and empirical question, for what tasks make up on occupation and how those tasks can shift about without destroying the occupation is a complicated and subtle thing. We do not have a good handle on this, theoretically or conceptually. But here we have the smart and hard-working David Kunst doing useful work: David Kunst: Deskilling Among Manufacturing Production Workers "Has technological progress in manufacturing been skill-biased or deskilling? This column argues that the conventional distinction between white-collar and production workers has concealed substantial deskilling among manufacturing production workers since the 1950s. Automation has reduced the demand for skilled craftsmen around the world, thereby reducing the number of jobs in which workers with little formal education could acquire significant marketable skills...

#noted #2020-02-07