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General human capital and employment adjustment in the Great Depression: Apprentices and journeymen in UK engineering

Citation
Hart RA (2005) General human capital and employment adjustment in the Great Depression: Apprentices and journeymen in UK engineering, Oxford Economic Papers, 57 (1), pp. 169-189.

Abstract
The relationship between training and firm-level employment adjustment given an unanticipated fall in product demand has been central to human capital theory. The most cataclysmic negative output shock occurred in 1929-30. At this time, easily the most important source of United Kingdom general training was the apprenticeship system. Using data collected by the Engineering Employers' Federation (EEF), this paper examines the impact of the Great Depression on numbers of apprentices and skilled journeymen. Statistics cover eight skilled engineering occupations in 27 local labour markets over the period 1928-38. Relative employment adjustment responses of apprentices and journeymen accord well with general human capital arguments.

Keywords
employment; Great Depression; historical perspective; human capital; labor market

StatusPublished
AuthorsHart Robert A
Publication date01/2005
PublisherOxford University Press (OUP)
ISSN 0030-7653
LanguageEnglish

Journal
Oxford Economic Papers: Volume 57, Issue 1 (JAN 2005)

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