Working Paper No. 294: Technological Change and Wage Polarization – The Illiberal Populist Response

PublikationWorking paper
Arbetsmarknad, Jonas Grafström, Teknikskiften
Ladda ner


The purpose of this paper is to discuss populist actions that are expected follow technological change on the labor market.1 The causes and consequences of possible technological unemployment will be addressed and to what extent it could be expected that the rapid technological change leads to unemployment (or that the labor market adapts in a similar way to previous technological changes as has been seen in history so far). A transforming labor market will constitute challenges for the future – possible wage polarization and heterogeneous distribution of unemployment in the labor force might create a demand for policy solutions that have an illiberal direction. In the paper it will be argued that the threat of populism will come from a disgruntled middle class rather than as commonly believed the poorer strata of the wage distribution.

Grafström, J. (2017). Technological Change and Wage Polarization – The Illiberal Populist Response. Ratio Working Paper No. 294. Stockholm: Ratio.

Liknande innehåll

No evidence of counteracting policy effects on European solar power invention and diffusion.
Artikel (med peer review)Publikation
Grafström, J., & Poudineh, R.


Publicerat i

Energy Policy, 172, 113319.


In this paper, the questions of how support policies affect invention and diffusion of solar PV technology and whether the effect is heterogeneous and counteracting are investigated in order to help policy makers produce a better policy mix. The policies (and policy proxies) investigated are Feed-in-tariffs (FITs), Public R&D stock and flow, Environmental tax, and Environmental Policy Stringency Index. The policies are within the control of national government and no EU level policies are investigated. Evaluating policies on several dimensions is highly important since there is a risk that policies can promote one aspect of technological progress such as invention but derail diffusion. A Schumpeterian technological development approach is utilised on a panel dataset covering 23 European countries between 2000 and 2019. Two econometric approaches are employed, a negative binomial regression model is used to assess inventions and a panel data fixed effect regression is used for the diffusion model. The empirical findings suggest that no counteracting policy effects were present.

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