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Rational Underdevelopment

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  • Klaus Desmet
  • Ignacio Ortuño Ortín

Abstract

We propose a two-region two-sector model of uneven development, where technological change benefits either the lagging or the leading region. In this framework interregional transfers may lead to persistent underdevelopment; by raising wages, transfers reduce the chance of the backward region adopting a new technology and taking off. Due to uncertainty about which region benefits from technological change, the backward region may rationally choose to remain underdeveloped, while the advanced region continues to pay transfers. The model provides a rationale for cases, such as Italy's "Mezzogiorno", where the same rich region subsidizes the same poor region on a continuous basis. Copyright The editors of the "Scandinavian Journal of Economics" 2007 .

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Scandinavian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 109 (2007)
Issue (Month): 1 (03)
Pages: 1-24

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Handle: RePEc:bla:scandj:v:109:y:2007:i:1:p:1-24

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  1. Brunello, Giorgio & Lupi, Claudio & Ordine, Patrizia, 2001. "Widening differences in Italian regional unemployment," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 103-129, January.
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  11. Klaus Desmet & Ignacio Ortuño Ortín, 2007. "Rational Underdevelopment," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 109(1), pages 1-24, 03.
  12. Boltho, Andrea & Carlin, Wendy & Scaramozzino, Pasquale, 1996. "Will East Germany Become a New Mezzogiorno?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1256, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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Cited by:
  1. Klaus Desmet & Ignacio Ortuño Ortín, 2001. "Rational Underdevelopment," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0114, Banco de Espa�a.
  2. Ramon Tremosa-i-Balcells & Joan Costa-i-Font, . "The "relative competitiveness" patterns of Spanish regions after the European Monetary Union (1999-2002)," Studies on the Spanish Economy 169, FEDEA.
  3. Gilad Aharonovitz, 2011. "Knowledge-based spatial differences in economic activity, job related migration and housing related migration," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 46(1), pages 159-188, February.

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