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Why did (pre‐industrial) firms train?: premiums and apprenticeship contracts in 18th century England

By Chris Minns and Patrick Wallis


Despite poor information flows, high levels of uncertainty, and low completion rates, training through apprenticeship provided the main mechanism for occupational human capital formation in pre‐industrial England. This paper demonstrates how training premiums complemented the formal legal framework surrounding apprenticeship to secure training contracts. Premiums compensated parties for the anticipated risk of default, but in most trades were small enough to allow access to apprenticeship training for youths from modest families

Topics: DA Great Britain, HC Economic History and Conditions, HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Publisher: Department of Economic History, London School of Economics and Political Science
Year: 2011
OAI identifier:
Provided by: LSE Research Online

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