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Regulatory Barriers to the Diffusion of Innovation: Some Evidence from Building Codes

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  • Sharon M. Oster
  • John M. Quigley

Abstract

Previous studies, including the reports of the Douglas and Kaiser Commission, have suggested that outmoded local regulation of residential construction has impeded technical progress in the industry. In this paper, we try to identify the determinants of differences across communities in these regulations. The permissibility of four particular innovations in a cross section of jurisdictions in 1970 and the timing of these innovations are explained by attributes of local firms, labor unions, building officials, and housing demand. Our results suggest that the educational level of the chief building official, the extent of unionization, and the relative size of housebuilding firms in an area affect the diffusion of innovations in residential construction.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by The RAND Corporation in its journal Bell Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 8 (1977)
Issue (Month): 2 (Autumn)
Pages: 361-377

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Handle: RePEc:rje:bellje:v:8:y:1977:i:autumn:p:361-377

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Cited by:
  1. Martin Jakob & Reinhard Madlener, 2003. "Exploring Experience Curves for the Building Envelope: An Investigation for Switzerland for 1970–2020," CEPE Working paper series 03-22, CEPE Center for Energy Policy and Economics, ETH Zurich.
  2. Carlton, Dennis W. & Perloff, Jeffrey M., 1989. "The Economics of Information," Research Reports 25156, University of Connecticut, Food Marketing Policy Center.
  3. Geroski, Paul A, 1999. "Models of Technology Diffusion," CEPR Discussion Papers 2146, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Garrett, Vicki & Koontz, Tomas M., 2008. "Breaking the cycle: Producer and consumer perspectives on the non-adoption of passive solar housing in the US," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 1551-1566, April.
  5. Nils Kok & Marquise McGraw & John Quigley, 2012. "The diffusion over time and space of energy efficiency in building," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 48(2), pages 541-564, April.
  6. Wang, Chunhua, 2014. "Regulating land development in a natural disaster-prone area: The roles of building codes," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 209-228.
  7. Mueller, Steffen, 2006. "Missing the spark: An investigation into the low adoption paradox of combined heat and power technologies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(17), pages 3153-3164, November.
  8. Holmes, Thomas J. & Jr., James A. Schmitz, 2001. "A gain from trade: From unproductive to productive entrepreneurship," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 417-446, April.

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