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Perspectives on Growth Theory

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  • Robert M. Solow

Abstract

This essay relates recent developments in growth theory to problems and ideas that first engaged R. F. Harrod, E. Domar, and their neoclassical successors. The body of 'new growth theory' began by finding special ways to assume that there are constant returns to capital. It is shown that this is a very nonrobust assumption, thus not a good basis for growth theory. More promising is the attempt to create a genuinely endogenous theory of the process of innovation. This notion has always been present in the literature or just beneath the surface. Current ideas, for all their ingenuity, may be too mechanical.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/jep.8.1.45
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal Journal of Economic Perspectives.

Volume (Year): 8 (1994)
Issue (Month): 1 (Winter)
Pages: 45-54

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Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:8:y:1994:i:1:p:45-54

Note: DOI: 10.1257/jep.8.1.45
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  1. Paul M Romer, 1999. "Endogenous Technological Change," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2135, David K. Levine.
  2. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1990. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 3541, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  4. Levine, Ross & Renelt, David, 1992. "A Sensitivity Analysis of Cross-Country Growth Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 942-63, September.
  5. Ricardo J. Caballero & Adam B. Jaffe, 1993. "How High are the Giants' Shoulders: An Empirical Assessment of Knowledge Spillovers and Creative Destruction in a Model of Economic Growth," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1993, Volume 8, pages 15-86 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Nancy L. Stokey, 1990. "Human Capital, Product Quality, And Growth," NBER Working Papers 3413, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Scholarly Articles 12490578, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  8. Romer, Paul M, 1986. "Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-37, October.
  9. Young, Alwyn, 1993. "Invention and Bounded Learning by Doing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 443-72, June.
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