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A Simple Model of Economic Geography à la Helpman-Tabuchi

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  • Murata, Yasusada
  • Thisse, Jacques-François

Abstract

This paper explores the interplay between commodities’ transportation costs and workers’ commuting costs within a general equilibrium framework à la Dixit-Stiglitz. Workers are mobile and choose a region to work in as well as an intra-urban location in which to live. We show that a more integrated economy need not be more agglomerated. Instead, low transportation costs lead to the dispersion of economic activities. This is because workers are able to alleviate the burden of urban costs by being dispersed, while retaining a good access to all varieties. By contrast, low commuting costs foster the agglomeration of economic activities.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4936.

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Date of creation: Feb 2005
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4936

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Keywords: agglomeration; commuting costs; economic geography; transportation costs; urban costs;

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  1. Ottaviano, Gianmarco Ireo Paolo & Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2004. "The 'Genome' of NEG Models with Vertical Linkages: A Positive and Normative Synthesis," CEPR Discussion Papers 4600, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. TABUCHI, Takahoshi & THISSE, Jacques-François, . "Regional specialization, urban hierarchy, and commuting costs," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1967, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  3. Gianmarco Ottaviano & Takatoshi Tabuchi & Jacques-Francois Tissse, 1999. "Agglomeration and Trade Revisited," CIRJE F-Series CIRJE-F-65, CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo.
  4. Alex Anas, 2003. "Vanishing Cities: What Does the New Economic Geography Imply About the Efficiency of Urbanization?," Urban/Regional 0302005, EconWPA.
  5. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
  6. Duranton, Gilles & Puga, Diego, 2000. "Nursery Cities: Urban Diversity, Process Innovation, and the Life-Cycle of Products," CEPR Discussion Papers 2376, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Paul Krugman, 1990. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," NBER Working Papers 3275, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Krugman, Paul & Elizondo, Raul Livas, 1996. "Trade policy and the Third World metropolis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 137-150, April.
  9. Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2004. "The Structure of Simple 'New Economic Geography' Models," CEPR Discussion Papers 4326, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Tabuchi, Takatoshi, 1998. "Urban Agglomeration and Dispersion: A Synthesis of Alonso and Krugman," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 333-351, November.
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