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Title:Money for Nothing and your Chips for Free? The Anatomy of the PC Wage Differential PDF Logo
Authors:Schmidt, Christoph M.
Haisken-DeNew, John P.
Issue Date:1999
Series/Report no.:DIW-Diskussionspapiere 178
Abstract:In this paper, the role of the computer at the workplace will be examined in determining the wage structure in Germany. Following Krueger (1993) and using the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP), cross-sectional wage regression results from 1997 and panel results from 1984-1997 are presented. It is shown that the wage premium attributed to using a computer at work using cross-sectional results for 1997 is around 7%. Further it is shown that computer usage is very heterogeneous depending on which industry one works in. In cross-section, hypothesis tests show that several industries and almost all firm size categories exhibit very different wage differentials depending on computer usage at the workplace. As DiNardo/Pischke (1997) stress the need for panel data to control for unmeasured individual effects, we use GSOEP 1984-1997 panel data, where a random effects and fixed effects estimator were run in the wage estimation. We confirm the results that Entorf/Kramarz (1997) had for France, that in Germany the coefficient for computer usage at the workplace did NOT remain stable and although just barely significant, was reduced to mere 1% with individual fixed effects. We conclude that there are no computer usage wage differentials worth speaking of, once one controls adequately for unobserved individual heterogeneity.
Abstract (Translated):Aufbauend auf humankapital-theoretischen Überlegungen wird auf Basis der Individual-Daten des Sozio-oekonomischen Panels (SOEP) die Rolle der Nutzung von Computern am Arbeitsplatz als Determinante der Lohnstruktur in Deutschland untersucht. Bei Verwendung von Querschnittdaten ergibt sich für das Jahr 1997 ein signifikantes Lohndifferential zugunsten der PC-Nutzung von 7%. Um unbeobachtete Heterogenität zu kontrollieren, nutzen wir Fixed-Effects und Random-Effects-Panel-Schätzer. Im Ergebnis bleibt der Koeffizient der PC-Nutzung zwar noch schwach signifikant, reduziert sich aber auf nur noch 1%. Daraus schließen wir, daß es in Deutschland kein nennenswertes Lohndifferential der PC-Nutzung gibt, wenn man adäquat für unbeobachtete Heterogenität kontrolliert.
Subjects:Lohnprämie für Computernutzung
Skill-Biased Technological Change
interindustrielle Lohndifferentiale
Computer Wage Premium
Skill-Biased Technological Change
Inter-Industry Wage Differentials
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:DIW-Diskussionspapiere
Publikationen von Forscherinnen und Forschern des DIW

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