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Is there a shortfall in public capital investment? An overview

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  • Alicia H. Munnell

Abstract

This article summarizes the Bank’s economic conference held in June 1990. The conference aimed to determine the extent to which the United States may be underinvesting in public infrastructure, explain the potential economic consequences, and suggest mechanisms to help alleviate any adverse trends. It focused on public investment in physical capital only to make the topic manageable, and should not be interpreted to mean that investment in human capital is in any way less important. ; Two quite different perspectives on the need for more infrastructure investment emerge from the discussion. On one side are those who see a strong link between public capital investment and economic and social well-being; they view the current stock of public capital as inadequate and believe that additional investment is required. On the other side are those who are primarily concerned with the efficient use of existing infrastructure; they basically oppose increasing investment until the engineering, pricing, and financing of infrastructure are closer to the optimum.

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File URL: http://www.bostonfed.org/economic/conf/conf34/conf34a.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Boston in its journal Conference Series ; [Proceedings].

Volume (Year): 34 (1990)
Issue (Month): ()
Pages: 1-20

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedbcp:y:1990:p:1-20:n:34

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Keywords: Capital investments ; Public policy ; Infrastructure (Economics);

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Cited by:
  1. Bruno Jullien & Frederic Rychen & Antoine Soubeyran, 2000. "Local Public Investment and Competition for a Firm," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1400, Econometric Society.
  2. Pedro R. D. Bom & Jenny Ligthart, 2008. "How Productive is Public Capital? A Meta-Analysis," CESifo Working Paper Series 2206, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Andrew F. Haughwout, 2000. "Public infrastructure investments, productivity and welfare in fixed geographic areas," Staff Reports 104, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  4. M.Rosaria Alfano & A. Laura Baraldi, 2008. "The design of electoral rules and their impact on economic growth: the Italian case," Working Papers 3_2008, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
  5. Kopp, Andreas, 1995. "Public sector capital and labour productivity: West German federal states and spatial interdependence," Kiel Working Papers 699, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  6. Alberto Bucci & Chiara Del Bo, 2012. "On the interaction between public and private capital in economic growth," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 106(2), pages 133-152, June.
  7. Prabir De, 2010. "Governance, Institutions, and Regional Infrastructure in Asia," Working Papers id:3029, eSocialSciences.

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