Technological Progress and the Earnings of Older Workers

Published: 2012
Project ID: UM12-01


This proposal seeks to use SSA’s Continuous Work History Sample (CWHS) data to study the effect of technological progress on the earnings for workers of different ages, in particular, older workers nearing retirement. Prior work by Laitner and Stolyarov used decennial Census data to investigate whether older workers benefit (in terms of wage growth) from technological change as much as their younger colleagues. The tentative answer was in the affirmative. This project would conduct a more definitive analysis with annual, panel CWHS data. The ability of older workers to realize the benefits of technological change is important given the aging labor force in many OECD countries, and it may have a significant bearing on future retirement ages.