A Economia do Conhecimento Tácito

CAMBRIDGE – Quase todos os países ricos são ricos porque exploram o progresso tecnológico. Transferiram a maior parte da sua mão-de-obra da agricultura para as cidades, onde o conhecimento prático pode ser mais facilmente partilhado. As suas famílias têm menos crianças e educam-nas mais intensivamente, facilitando assim o progresso tecnológico adicional.

Para se tornarem ricos, os países pobres deverão sofrer uma mudança equivalente: reduzir o emprego na agricultura, tornarem-se mais urbanos, ter menos crianças, e manter mais tempo na escola as crianças que tiverem. Se o fizerem, as portas da prosperidade abrir-se-ão. E isso não está já a acontecer?

Comparemos, por exemplo, o Brasil em 2010 com o Reino Unido em 1960. O Brasil em 2010 era 84,3% urbano; a sua taxa de fertilidade era de 1,8 nascimentos por mulher; a sua mão-de-obra tinha uma média de 7,2 anos de escolaridade; e os licenciados constituíam 5,2% dos trabalhadores potenciais. Estes indicadores escolares são melhores do que os do Reino Unido em 1960. Nessa altura, o Reino Unido era 78,4% urbano; a sua taxa de fertilidade era de 2,7; a sua mão-de-obra tinha em média seis anos de escolaridade, e os seus licenciados constituíam menos de 2% dos trabalhadores potenciais.

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