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Technical Education, Human Capital and Innovation

Research on economic growth has emphasized the role of human capital in economic and technological development and, in particular, its role in the transition towards modern economic growth. However, the important empirical question is to what extent it is average human capital, such as literacy rates or “upper-tail” knowledge of a smaller group of individuals that matter. The project uses rich new individual-level data on the universe of both Swedish inventors and individuals with a degree from a technical college between the 18 century and the outbreak of WWI. The database allows the research group to study the relationship between human capital, innovation, and productivity at the individual level and the firm and regional level.