Fabio Montobbio, Jacopo Staccioli, Maria Enrica Virgillito and Marco Vivarelli

Author Archive | Fabio Montobbio, Jacopo Staccioli, Maria Enrica Virgillito and Marco Vivarelli


Robots and the origin of their labour-saving impact

This paper investigates the presence of explicit labour-saving heuristics within robotic patents. It analyses innovative actors engaged in robotic technology and their economic environment (identity, location, industry), and identifies the technological fields par- ticularly exposed to labour-saving innovations. It exploits advanced natural language processing and probabilistic topic modelling techniques on the universe of patent ap- […]

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The Impact of Deunionization on the Growth and Dispersion of Productivity and Pay

This paper presents an Agent-Based Model (ABM) that seeks to explain the concordance of sluggish growth of productivity and of real wages found in macro-economic statistics, and the increased dispersion of firm productivity and worker earnings found in micro level statistics in advanced economies at the turn of the 21st century. It shows that a […]

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Anatomy of the Italian occupational structure: concentrated power and distributed knowledge

Which type of work do Italians perform? In this contribution we aim at detecting the anatomy of the Italian occupational structure by taking stock of a micro-level dataset registering the task content, the execution of procedures, the knowledge embedded in the work itself, called ICP (Indagine Campionaria sulle Professioni), the latter being comparable to the […]

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Embodied and disembodied technological change: the sectoral patterns of job-creation and job-destruction

This paper addresses, both theoretically and empirically, the sectoral patterns of job creation and job destruction in order to distinguish the alternative effects of embodied vs disembodied technological change operating into a vertically connected economy. Disembodied technological change turns out to positively affect employment dynamics in the “upstream’’ sectors, while expansionary investment does so in […]

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Workers’ intervention authority in Italian 4.0 factories: autonomy and discretion

The present contribution aims at investigating the relationship between the introduction of Industry 4.0 technological innovations and the ensuing implications for workers’ skills composition, their empowerment, and their authority of intervention in the work process, within three Italian firms exhibiting a wide range of organisational practices: from Japanese Toyotism, to a mix of Taylorism and […]

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Control in the era of surveillance capitalism: an empirical investigation of Italian Industry 4.0 factories

We explore the extent to which the current technological trend, dubbed Industry 4.0, might increase forms of control inside organisations, by focussing on pivotal firms in the so-called Italian Motor Valley currently embracing its adoption. We find that Industry 4.0 technologies open up great possibilities for incorporating the three forms of control identified by Orlikowski […]

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The Wage-Productivity Nexus in the World Factory Economy

The Wage-Productivity Nexus in the World Factory Economy

This paper highlights new findings on the wage-productivity nexus in theWorld Factory Economy. After presenting the long-run macro-elasticity characterizing the phase of Chinese economic development since the eighties, we look at the wage-productivity nexus from a micro level perspective using a detailed firm-level dataset covering the period of ownership restructuring (1998-2007). A few results are […]

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Whither the evolution of the contemporary social fabric? New technologies and old socio-economic trends

The reflections which follow build on two interrelated questions, namely, first, whether we are witnessing another “industrial revolution”, and second, what is the impact of technological transformations upon the current dynamics of the socio-economic fabric, especially with respect to employment, income distribution, working conditions and labour relations. We argue that the processes of innovation and […]

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