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Bohemians, Human Capital, and Regional Economic Growth

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  • Oliver Falck
  • Michael Fritsch
  • Stephan Heblich

Abstract

An emerging literature on the geography of bohemians argues that a region’s lifestyle and cultural amenities explain, at least partly, the unequal distribution of highly qualified people across space, which in turn, explains geographic disparities in economic growth. However, to date, there has been little or no empirical attempt to identify a causal relation. To identify the causal impact of bohemians on economic growth, we apply an instrumental variable approach using as an exogenous instrument the geographic distribution of bohemians prior to the Industrial Revolution in Germany. This distribution was primary the result of competition for prestige between courts and not of economic prosperity. Accordingly, the instrument is independent of today’s regional economic development. Focusing on the concentration of highly skilled people today that is explained by the proximity to exogenous concentrations of bohemians, the observed local average treatment effect supports the hypothesis of a positive impact of bohemians on regional economic development.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2715.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2715

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Keywords: regional growth; human capital; bohemians; instrumental variables;

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Cited by:
  1. Michael Funke & Yu-Fu Chen, 2009. "Booms, Recessions and Financial Turmoil: A Fresh Look at Investment Decisions under Cyclical Uncertainty," Quantitative Macroeconomics Working Papers 20908, Hamburg University, Department of Economics.
  2. Edward L. Glaeser & Sari Pekkala Kerr & William R. Kerr, 2013. "Entrepreneurship And Urban Growth:An Empirical Assessment With Historical Mines," Working Papers 13-15, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  3. Jan Wedemeier, 2011. "Creative professionals and high-skilled agents': Polarization of employment growth?," ERSA conference papers ersa11p489, European Regional Science Association.
  4. Aaron Chatterji & Edward L. Glaeser & William R. Kerr, 2013. "Clusters of Entrepreneurship and Innovation," NBER Working Papers 19013, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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