Seminar: Automation, employment and income inequality

Course content

To go into depth about the consequences of new technologies – robots automation and AI, on the labor market. To what extent do these technologies affect the labor market differently than technological innovation that came before it? Students are encouraged to carry out their own empirical analysis

 

Topics could include

  • The effects of the implementation of a specific technology on inequality or unemployment
  • Historical parallels between new technologies today and previously
  • Gender differences in the effects of technology
  • The interplay between new technology and globalization
  • The interplay between education and new technology.
  • Job and Wage polarization
  • The labor share of GDP.
  • The drivers of new technologies
Education

MSc programme in Economics

The seminar is primarily for students at the MSc of Economics

Learning outcome

After completing the seminar the student is expected to be able to fulfill the learning outcome specified in the Curriculum and to be able to:

 

Knowledge:

  • Account for the most recent findings in the literature studying the interplay between technology and labor markets
  • Account for the basic assumptions of the theoretical models including: factor complementarity, labor share of GDP and task-based modelling.

 

Skills:

  • Analyze the consequences of new technology in a specific setting
  • Evaluate existing research and discuss its reliability.
  • Evaluate policy responses to rising inequality.

 

Competencies:

  • Plan a research project
  • Design policy responses to adverse developments in labor markets.

Activities:
- Kick-off meeting
- Finding literatur and defining the project
- Writing process of the seminar paper
- Presentation of own project and paper
- Giving constructive feedback to another student´s paper
- Actively participating in discussions at the presentations and other meetings.

At the seminar the student is trained independently to
- identify and clarify a problem,
- seek and select relevant literatur,
- write a academic paper,
- present and discuss own paper with the other students at the seminar.

The aim of the presentations is, that the student uses the presentation as an opportunity to practice oral skills and to receive feedback. The presentations is not a part of the exam and will not be assessed.

There is no weekly teaching/lecturing and the student cannot expect guidance from the teacher. If the teacher gives a few introduction lectures or gives the opportunity for guidance, this as well as other expectations are clarified at the kickoff meeting.

Process:
It is strongly recommended that you think about and search for a topic before the semester begins, as there is only a few weeks from the kick-off meeting to the submission of the project description/ agreement paper.

Before the presentations, your nearly finished version of the seminar project paper must be uploaded in Absalon, as the opponents and the other seminar participants have to read and comment on the paper. It is important that you upload a paper that is so finalized as possible due to the fact that the value of feedback and comments at the presentation is strongly associated with the skill level of the seminar paper.

After the presentations, you can with a few corrections improve the seminar paper by including the feedback and comments emerged during the presentations. It is NOT intended that you rewrite or begin the writing of the full project AFTER the presentation has taken place.

  • Acemoglu and Autor, “Skills, tasks and technologies: implications for employment and earnings”, Handbook of labor economics, 2011
  • Acemoglu and Restrepo, “Robots and jobs: Evidence for US labor market”, Working Paper, 2017
  • Michaels, Natraj and Van Reenen “Has ICT polarized skill demand? Evidence from eleven countries over twenty-five years”, Review of Economics and Statistics, 2014
  • Jaimovich and Siu, “The trend is the cycle: Job polarization and jobless recoveries”, Working paper, 2012
  • Autor, Dorn and Hanson, “Untangling trade and technology: Evidence from local labour markets”, The economic Journal, 2015.
  • Dechezleprêtre, Hémous, Olsen and Zanella, “Automating Labor: Evidence from Firm-level patent data”, Working paper 2019

The seminar only relies on the mandatory classes in the Bachelor of Economics at the Department of Economics, Copenhagen University. A solid understanding of econometrics and long-run macroeconomics is an advantage.

BSc in Economics or similar

Schedule:

Spring 2020:
• Kick-off meeting: 5th of February 2020 3PM to 5 PM
• Deadline of commitment paper: not later than March 1st at 10 AM
• Deadline of pre-paper upload in Absalon: A week before the presentations
• Presentations/Workshops: Early May

All information regarding the seminar is communicated through Absalon including venue. So it is very important that you by yourself logon to Absalon and read the information already when you are registered at the seminar.

Oral
Individual
Collective
Feedback by final exam (In addition to the grade)
ECTS
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written examination
A seminar paper in English that meets the formal requirements for written papers stated in the curriculum and at KUNet for seminars.
_____
Aid
All aids allowed

for the seminar paper.

The teacher defines the aids that must be used for the presentations.

____

Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
_____
Criteria for exam assessment

Students are assessed on the extent to which they master the learning outcome for the seminar and can make use of the knowledge, skills and competencies listed in the learning outcomes in the Curriculum of the Master programme.

 

To receive the top grade, the student must with no or only a few minor weaknesses be able to demonstrate an excellent performance displaying a high level of command of all aspects of the relevant material.

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Project work
  • 186
  • Seminar
  • 20
  • English
  • 206