Education, structural change and economic development

Pier Paolo Saviotti, Utrecht University

While the positive effect of education on economic growth is generally accepted its effect on income distribution is less well understood. In this paper we analyze the  role of education in the context of a model of economic development based on variety enhancing structural change called TEVECON. In this model the number of sectors is endogenously variable. New sectors are created by Schumpeterian entrepreneurs based on radical innovations and evolve by increasing sectoral output quality and internal differentiation. The population of the economic system is divided into two social classes differing for the level and quality of education they have access to. These social classes could be, for example, workers and managers. As a consequence the two social classes have different qualities of human capital, contribute differently to growth, have different wages and income per capita. Our results show that by varying investment in education, its allocation between the two social classes and the relative quality of education we can give rise to inclusive growth (reducing economic inequality) or exclusive growth (enhancing economic inequality).   

About the speaker

Dr Pier Paolo Saviotti has degrees in Chemistry (PhD, MCGill University Montreal) and in the social studies of science (MSc, University of Manchester). He taught in Universidad del Zulia, Venezuela, in the Departments of Science and Technology Policy and of Economics of Manchester University. Since 1994 and 2012 he has been Research Professor in the Grenoble unit of INRA, the National Institute of Agricultural Research of France, and in GREDEG CNRS in Sophia Antipolis. He has been Visiting Professor in the University of Jena (2002-2003), in Rand Afrikaans University (now University of Johannesburg) in 2004, in the University of Hohenheim in 2010-2011, in the Technological University of Eindhoven in 2012-2013. In 2012 he was research fellow in the Institute of Advanced Studies of Durham University. He is now visiting research fellow in innovation Studies, Copernicus Institute, Utrecht University, under the cross-faculty “Institutions” program, sub-theme “innovation”. Between July 2008 and July 2012 he has been vice-president of the International Schumpeter Society.

Venue: UNU-MERIT, Room 1.25

Date: 21 November 2017

Time: 16:00 - 17:00