Oct 072007

Dr. Robert Solow, recipient of the 1987 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics,
gives a lecture on his recent work with the Russell Sage Foundation on the
economics of low wage workers in high wage countries.

Dr. Solow coordinated an international team of researchers looking at economic differences in five leading European nations with respect to their low wage earners. Among the more interesting findings Dr. Solow feels the study has uncovered are the wide variations in the percentages of low wage living in first world nations as well as great differences in these workers’ ability to move on to higher paying work. Smaller, more homogeneous nations such as Denmark were much more successful in transitioning their low wage workers to better employment compared to larger, more heterogenous nations such as France.

Perhaps the most interesting obesrvation Dr. Solow makes is how the United
States would exhibit the least amount of social mobility if compared to
these other nations. With careful discussion on productivity, education, and
economic theory Dr. Solow gives a serious and engaging speech on the state
of economic inequity in the 21st century.

Another write-up from this lecture is available at the U.Va Sentinel.

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