Pascual Restrepo's research while affiliated with Boston University and other places

Publications (27)

Article
This article introduces the Special Issue on “Technology and the Labor Market”. We sum- marize the included articles and offer some lessons for policy and future research. The articles cover central issues such as how technology changes the nature of labor demand, the impact of technology on individual workers, the role of policy, as well as emergi...
Article
We argue theoretically and document empirically that aging leads to greater (industrial) automation, because it creates a shortage of middle-aged workers specializing in manual production tasks. We show that demographic change is associated with greater adoption of robots and other automation technologies across countries and with more robotics-rel...
Article
Artificial intelligence (AI) is set to influence every aspect of our lives, not least the way production is organised. AI, as a technology platform, can automate tasks previously performed by labour or create new tasks and activities in which humans can be productively employed. Recent technological change has been biased towards automation, with i...
Article
We study the firm-level implications of robot adoption in France. Of 55,390 firms in our sample, 598 adopted robots between 2010 and 2015, but these firms accounted for 20 percent of manufacturing employment. Adopters experienced significant declines in labor shares, the share of production workers in employment, and increases in value added and pr...
Article
We extend the canonical model of skill-biased technical change by modeling the allocation of tasks to factors and allowing for automation and the creation of new tasks. In our model, factor prices depend on the set of tasks they perform. Automation can reduce real wages and generate sizable changes in inequality associated with small productivity g...
Article
We study the firm-level implications of robot adoption in France. Of 55,390 firms in our sample, 598 adopted robots between 2010 and 2015, but these firms accounted for 20 percent of manufacturing employment. Adopters experienced significant declines in labor shares, the share of production workers in employment, and increases in value added and pr...
Article
We present a framework for understanding the effects of automation and other types of technological changes on labor demand, and use it to interpret changes in US employment over the recent past. At the center of our framework is the allocation of tasks to capital and labor—the task content of production. Automation, which enables capital to replac...
Article
We examine the concerns that new technologies will render labor redundant in a framework in which tasks previously performed by labor can be automated and new versions of existing tasks, in which labor has a comparative advantage, can be created. In a static version where capital is fixed and technology is exogenous, automation reduces employment a...
Article
We present a task-based model in which high- and low-skill workers compete against machines in the production of tasks. Low-skill (high-skill) automation corresponds to tasks performed by low-skill (high-skill) labor being taken over by capital. Automation displaces the type of labor it directly affects, depressing its wage. Through ripple effects,...
Article
Modeling automation as factor-augmenting technological change has unappealing implications. Instead, modeling it as the process of machines replacing tasks previously performed by labor is both descriptively realistic and leads to distinct and plausible predictions. In contrast to factor-augmenting technological change, the automation of tasks alwa...
Article
Several recent theories emphasize the negative effects of an aging population on economic growth, either because of the lower labor force participation and productivity of older workers or because aging will create an excess of savings over desired investment, leading to secular stagnation. We show that there is no such negative relationship in the...
Article
Several recent theories emphasize the negative effects of an aging population on economic growth, either because of the lower labor force participation and productivity of older workers or because aging will create an excess of savings over desired investment, leading to secular stagnation. We show that there is no such negative relationship in the...
Article
We study the effects of industrial robots on US labor markets. We showtheoretically that robots may reduce employment and wages and thattheir local impacts can be estimated using variation in exposure to ro-bots—defined from industry-level advances in robotics and local indus-try employment. We estimate robust negative effects of robots on em-ploym...

Citations

... AI will almost certainly continue to supplant a few man-made inventions and computer-assisted attempts, for example confession, decision-making, communication, and power [41]. In [42], complexity, judgment, relationship-based learning, original thinking, and a mix of actual labor, empathy, and correspondence [43] present new nonprofit intelligence agencies. For example, the following are some of the new job titles: ...
... Thus, there has been significant disagreement on the true impact of AI on jobs. Acemoglu et al. (2022) studied the impact of AI on labor markets using online vacancies in the United States from 2010 onwards. They concluded that "while visible at the establishment level, the aggregate impacts of AI-labor substitution on employment and wage growth in more exposed occupations and industries is currently too small to be detectable" (p. ...
... The problems of the labor market are reflected in the works of many authors. Technologies in relation to the labor market were studied by G. Graetz et al. (2019). ...
... Rising fixed costs can explain these stylized facts by imposing barriers for market entry and, hence, hampering competitiveness (Colciago and Mechelli 2020;Ridder 2020). Various arguments for the underlying causes of rising fixed costs include technological change (Acemoglu et al. 2020;Ridder 2020;Grullon et al. 2019;Bessen 2017), demographic change (Karahan et al. 2019;Hopenhayn et al. 2018), a slow-down in research productivity (Bloom et al. 2020) and increasing regulations (Gutiérrez and Philippon 2019). 2 Abstracting from redistributional issues, a recent strand of the literature studies different forms of taxation with market imperfections and strategic interactions which allow for endogenous entry and markups. See Coto-Martínez et al. (2007) (capital income and profit taxes), Colciago (2016) (labor and dividend income taxes), Etro (2018) (labor, dividend and capital income taxes), Bilbiie et al. (2019) (dividend income and consumption taxes) and Avdiu (2018) (capital and labor income taxes in developing countries). ...
... Indeed, many workers fear that wages will fall, as has already happened in many areas. A study by Acemoglu and Restrepo (2021) demonstrated that between 50 per cent and 70 per cent of changes in the US wage structure over the last four decades are accounted for by the relative wage declines of worker groups specialized in routine tasks in industries experiencing rapid automation. ...
... Numerous research conclusions show that the use of artificial intelligence technology can not only reduce costs and improve total factor productivity but also directly improve labor productivity. The application of artificial intelligence technology has effectively improved the productivity of existing labor while creating new employment opportunities (Acemoglu and Restrepo 2019). However, existing research mainly focuses on the technology of AI to increase the productivity of existing labor, and there are few comments on the creation of new labor opportunities. ...
... The literature on automation highlights that these jobs often routine tasks that can be relatively easily automated and therefore disappear due to lower labour demand (Autor et al., 2003;Michaels et al., 2014). Acemoglu et al. (2021) show for the United States that artificial intelligence replaces human workers in various types of tasks, but there is currently no aggregate impact on labour markets. For Austria, however, Hofer et al. (2017) find no evidence of polarization between 1994 and 2015, despite a relative decline in the share of jobs requiring intermediate formal education. ...
... 10 In many contributions the possible role of technical progress is explored. While in some cases (Acemoglu & Restrepo, 2017;Autor & Salomons, 2018) automation is found responsible for part of the fall in the labor share in the last decades, in other cases (Acemoglu & Restrepo, 2020) its effect is seen especially on wage differentials rather than the average wage rates. ...
... The technology adoption events in our data are almost entirely product rather than process-type changes. But both types may occur in reality, and some studies report examples of the latter when it comes to automation (e.g., Acemoglu and Restrepo 2020; Restrepo and Hubmer 2021). We explain next why our findings are distinctive but logical-and applicable to other settings where similar incentives for process vs. product type technology adoption prevail. ...
... Hu and Cao [16] demonstrated that population aging and total factor productivity in manufacturing are in an "inverted U shaped", with the impact mechanisms being higher labor costs and increased R&D investment, and China is currently in the positive impact zone. The more the workforce ages, the higher the density of use of automated production technologies such as industrial robots [17]. However, population aging raises the capital labor ratio with enterprise heterogeneity. ...