Prospects for Human Resource Development
Two questions remain unanswered in the analysis of human resource change in Puerto Rico and its experience with an "industrialization-first" development strategy. The first is, to what extent can Puerto Rico provide an understanding of labor force dynamics that proves useful for grasping the complexities of a broader development experience? And second, given the dramatic changes that have taken place in Puerto Rico in the last 45 years, what are the prospects for labor force change as the economy enters its fifth decade of industrial growth? Answers to the second are speculative in nature while answers to the first provide knowledge about fundamental labor market processes.
Before attempting to answer these difficult questions it is important to restate that a major premise of this work is that an analytical approach to the study of labor market phenomena is crucial for comprehending the behavior of economic agents. It is important, however, to account for differences in the state of development of labor markets when applying analytical models that were generated in the context of more industrialized societies. The speed with which Puerto Rico's agricultural economy was transformed into an industrial one, and the crucial role of markets in this process, encourage a more analytical and quantitative approach.
The movement of wages and prices have played a fundamental role in the allocation of resources and goods and services in the Puerto Rican economy. They have served as crucial signals that have influenced the speed of industrialization and the changing structure of occupations and sectors. Patterns of labor force participation, labor mobility (including migration), and demographic