In This Review

Accelerating the Globalization of America: The Role for Information Technology
Accelerating the Globalization of America: The Role for Information Technology
By Catherine L. Mann with Jacob Funk Kirkegaard
Institute for International Economics, 2006, 256 pp

This data-rich book addresses the role of information technology (IT) in transforming the U.S. economy and the country's economic relations with the rest of the world. The basic thesis is that IT has increased globalization and pushed it into new territory, especially that of selected service industries, and that both IT and globalization have made possible higher productivity and higher living standards in the United States. Lower prices of IT goods have increased living standards directly, and they have also increased productivity gains in IT-using sectors of the economy. Rising incomes in the United States and elsewhere have increased the demand for IT services, which the United States excels at providing and exporting. The IT revolution has also increased "churning" in the labor force, as firms adapt to the new technologies, and has increased the relative advantage of those workers who are more highly educated or adapt more readily to new opportunities. The book provides informative analysis of the role of foreign skilled workers in the United States, U.S. IT firms abroad, U.S. venture capital abroad, and educational attainment in the United States and other rich countries; it closes with policy recommendations for how to continue rapid innovation in the United States and improve the ability of American workers to keep up with and adapt to a high-innovation economy.