Munich Personal RePEc Archive

On Barriers to Technology Adoption, Appropriate Technology and Deep Integration (with implications for the European Union)

Mercenier, Jean and Voyvoda, Ebru (2018): On Barriers to Technology Adoption, Appropriate Technology and Deep Integration (with implications for the European Union).

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Abstract

Based on two strands of research, namely ‘barriers to technology adoption’ and ‘appropriate technology’, we propose a formal reappraisal of ‘deep integration’, a broad concept often used in trade policy discussions. We then evaluate the 2004-7 EU enlargement wave utilizing this operational reappraisal. More specifically, we first estimate, using 2007 data, total labor productivity (TLP) in the 27 EU member states, and show that in all but a few sectors, new member states clearly stand below the lower envelope technology frontier of the older members in their use of skilled and unskilled labor. We interpret this as being the result of past barriers to technology adoption that are likely to be removed by the integration process into the EU, with these new counties’ TLP shifting to the incumbent members’ lower envelope. We then explore the potential effects on all 27 EU member states of this ‘deep integration’ experiment using a calibrated intertemporal multisectoral general equilibrium model. Our main finding is that, for most parameter configurations, workers’ welfare in incumbent member countries is not negatively impacted despite the rather drastic improvement in competitiveness experienced by new members.

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