millennials Richard Levine/Getty Images

L'augmentation de la productivité n'est pas un but en soi !

MILAN – Les économistes ne cherchent pas seulement à répondre à des questions difficiles, mais aussi à trouver les bonnes questions. Et il arrive que reconsidérer une question permette d'en trouver la réponse.

Intéressons-nous par exemple au débat sur la productivité. Les économistes qui essayent de comprendre le ralentissement apparent de la croissance de la productivité posent la question suivante : où est passée la part manquante de cette croissance ? Dans leur réponse ils évoquent la mesure des indicateurs économiques, les changements structuraux du marché de l'emploi, le manque potentiel d'opportunités d'investissement, l'innovation technologique qui conduit parfois à un saupoudrage de la hausse de productivité et à une inadéquation entre cette innovation et les compétences de la main d'œuvre.

Or il pourrait être judicieux de poser une autre question, plus fondamentale : de combien voulons-nous accroître la productivité, et à quel prix ?

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