We document that countries with higher initial education levels experienced faster value-added and employment growth in schooling-intensive industries in the 1980s and 1990s. This effect is robust to controls for other determinants of international specialization and becomes stronger when we focus on economies open to international trade. Our finding is consistent with schooling fostering the adoption of new technologies if such technologies are skilled-labor augmenting, as was the case in the 1980s and the 1990s. In line with international specialization theory, we also find that countries where education levels increased rapidly experienced stronger shifts in production toward schooling-intensive industries.

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