La economía del conocimiento tácito

CAMBRIDGE – Casi todos los países ricos lo son porque aprovechan el progreso tecnológico. Han retirado la mayor parte de su fuerza laboral de la agricultura y la han trasladado a las ciudades, donde pueden compartir más fácilmente sus conocimientos. Sus familias tienen menos hijos y los instruyen más profundamente, con lo cual facilitan el progreso tecnológico.

Para llegar a ser ricos, los países pobres deben experimentar un cambio similar: reducir el empleo agrícola, urbanizarse más, tener menos hijos y mantener más tiempo en la escuela a los que tengan. Si lo hacen, se les abrirán las puertas de la prosperidad. ¿Pero acaso no está sucediendo ya eso?

Comparemos, por ejemplo, el Brasil en 2010 con el Reino Unido en 1960. En 2010, el Brasil estaba urbanizado en un 84,3 por ciento; su tasa de fecundidad era de 1,8 nacimientos por mujer; su fuerza laboral tenía en promedio 7,2 años de escolaridad 5,2 por ciento de estos tenía título universitario. Estos indicadores sociales son mejores que los del Reino Unido en 1960. En aquella época, este país estaba urbanizado en un 78,4 por ciento; su tasa de fecundidad era de 2,7; su fuerza laboral tenía seis años de escolaridad y menos del dos por ciento eran graduados universitarios.

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