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Market size, division of labor, and firm productivity

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  • Chaney, Thomas
  • Ossa, Ralph

Abstract

We generalize Krugman's (1979) ‘new trade’ model by allowing for an explicit production chain in which a range of tasks is performed sequentially by a number of specialized teams. We demonstrate that an increase in market size induces a deeper division of labor among these teams which leads to an increase in firm productivity. The paper can be thought of as a formalization of Smith's (1776) famous theorem that the division of labor is limited by the extent of the market. It also sheds light on how market size differences can limit the scope for international technology transfers.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Economics.

Volume (Year): 90 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 177-180

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Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:90:y:2013:i:1:p:177-180

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505552

Related research

Keywords: Market size; Division of labor; Firm productivity; Technology transfer;

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References

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  1. Daniel Trefler, 2004. "The Long and Short of the Canada-U. S. Free Trade Agreement," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 870-895, September.
  2. Wolfgang Keller, 2001. "International Technology Diffusion," NBER Working Papers 8573, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. John McLaren, 2000. ""Globalization" and Vertical Structure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1239-1254, December.
  4. Krugman, Paul, 1980. "Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 950-59, December.
  5. Sofronis Clerides & Saul Lach & James Tybout, 1996. "Is "Learning-by-Exporting" Important? Micro-Dynamic Evidence from Colombia, Mexico and Morocco," NBER Working Papers 5715, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Eckel, Carsten & Neary, J. P., 2010. "Multi-product firms and flexible manufacturing in the global economy," Munich Reprints in Economics 20525, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  7. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2011. "Multiproduct Firms and Trade Liberalization," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(3), pages 1271-1318.
  8. Melitz, Marc J, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," CEPR Discussion Papers 3381, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Susanto Basu & David N. Weil, 1996. "Appropriate Technology and Growth," NBER Working Papers 5865, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Nina Pavcnik, 2000. "Trade Liberalization, Exit, and Productivity Improvements: Evidence from Chilean Plants," NBER Working Papers 7852, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Andrew B Bernard & Jonathan Eaton & J. Bradford Jensen & Samuel Kortum, 2000. "Plants and productivity in international trade," Working Papers 00-08, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  12. Philippe Aghion & Robin Burgess & Stephen Redding & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2005. "Entry Liberalization and Inequality in Industrial Performance," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 291-302, 04/05.
  13. Krugman, Paul R., 1979. "Increasing returns, monopolistic competition, and international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 469-479, November.
  14. Dixit, Avinash K & Grossman, Gene M, 1982. "Trade and Protection with Multistage Production," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(4), pages 583-94, October.
  15. George J. Stigler, 1951. "The Division of Labor is Limited by the Extent of the Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59, pages 185.
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Cited by:
  1. Kwok Tong Soo, 2013. "The gains from the division of labour and comparative advantage," Working Papers 33867696, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
  2. Kamei, Keita, 2013. "Trade Liberalization, Division of Labor, and Firm Productivity," MPRA Paper 50301, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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