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DEEP Séminaires en Macroéconomie

The DEEP organizes a workshop covering a wide array of Macro topics, including growth, business cycles, monetary models, equilibrium asset pricing, labor markets, macro-econometrics, …

Presentations are 1h15, including questions from the audience. The workshop is open to external and internal speakers. 

Send an email to Fang.Liu.2@unil.ch for further information.

RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINES: LABOR-SAVING TECHNOLOGY AND UNREST IN ENGLAND, 1830-32*

Bruno Caprettini (University of Zurich)

25 avril 2017  -  12:15-13:30, salle Extranef 109

Host(s): Dominic Rohner

 

Can the adoption of labor-saving technology lead to social instability and unrest? We examine a canonical historical case, the so-called ̳Captain Swing‘ riots in 1830s Britain. Variously attributed to the adverse consequences of weather shocks, the shortcomings of the Poor Law, or the after-effects of enclosure, we emphasize the importance of a new technology – the threshing machine. Invented in the 1780s, it spread during and after the Napoleonic Wars. Using farm advertisements from newspapers published in 66 English and Welsh towns, we compile a new measure of the technology‘s diffusion. Parishes with ads for threshing machines had much higher riot probabilities in 1830 – and the relationship was even stronger for machine- breaking attacks. Threshing machines were mainly useful in wheat-growing areas. To establish a causal role for labor-saving technology, we instrument technology adoption with the FAO measure of soil suitability for wheat, and show that this in turn predicts unrest. 

Liste des prochaines séances

28 novembre 2017 Andreas Tischbirek (UNIL)
12:15-13:30, salle Extranef 109

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