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The Rise and Fall of Spatial Inequalities in France: a Long-Run Perspective

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  • Combes, Pierre-Philippe
  • Lafourcade, Miren
  • Thisse, Jacques-François
  • Toutain, Jean-Claude

Abstract

This paper uses a unique database that provides value-added, employment, and population levels for the entire set of French departments for the years 1860, 1930, and 2000. These data cover three sectors: agriculture, manufacturing, and services. This allows us to study the evolution of spatial inequalities within France and to test the empirical relevance of economic geography predictions over the long run. The evidence confirms the existence of a bell-shaped evolution of the spatial concentration of manufacturing and services. In contrast, labor productivity has been converging across departments. Last, our study also confirms the presence of strong agglomeration economies during the full time-period. Market potential during the first sub-period (1860-1930), and higher education during the second (1930-2000), together with sectoral diversity, account for the spatial distribution of these gains.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7017.

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Date of creation: Oct 2008
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7017

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Keywords: agglomeration economies; economic geography; economic history; human capital;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Brian A'Hearn & Tony Venables, 2011. "Internal Geography and External Trade: regional disparities in Italy, 1861-2011," Economics Series Working Papers 578, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  2. CARPANTIER, Jean-François & SAPATA, Christelle, 2012. "Unfair inequalities in France: A regional comparison," CORE Discussion Papers 2012038, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  3. Jean-François Carpantier & Christelle Sapata, 2013. "An Ex-Post View of Inequality of Opportunity in France and its Regions," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 34(3), pages 281-311, September.
  4. Tabuchi, Takatoshi & Thisse, Jacques-François & Zhu, Xiwei, 2014. "Technological Progress and Economic Geography," CEPR Discussion Papers 9901, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Maria Florencia Granato, 2011. "REGIONAL NEW ECONOMIC GEOGRAPHY (refereed paper)," ERSA conference papers ersa10p747, European Regional Science Association.
  6. Schaeffer, Y. & Charlot, S., 2012. "Inequality aversion, income redistribution and economic geography," Working Papers 201204, Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory (GAEL).
  7. Julio Martinez-Galarraga, 2010. "The determinants of industrial location in Spain, 1856-1929," Working Papers in Economics 244, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
  8. Evgeniya Kolomak, 2013. "Spatial inequalities in Russia: dynamic and sectorial analysis," International Journal of Economic Policy in Emerging Economies, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 6(4), pages 375-402.
  9. Dusan Paredes, 2010. "Can NEG explains the spatial distribution of wages in developing countries? Evidence from Chile," Documentos de Trabajo en Economia y Ciencia Regional 02, Universidad Catolica del Norte, Chile, Department of Economics, revised Sep 2010.
  10. Pflüger, Michael & Tabuchi, Takatoshi, 2010. "The size of regions with land use for production," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 481-489, November.
  11. Julio Martínez-Galarraga & Daniel A. Tirado-Fabregat & Rafael González-Val, 2014. "Market Potential and Regional Economic Growth in Spain, 1860-1930," Documentos de Trabajo (DT-AEHE) 1409, Asociación Española de Historia Económica.
  12. María Ayuda & Fernando Collantes & Vicente Pinilla, 2010. "From locational fundamentals to increasing returns: the spatial concentration of population in Spain, 1787–2000," Journal of Geographical Systems, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 25-50, March.
  13. Eric BROUILLAT (GREThA UMR CNRS 5113) & Yannick LUNG (GREThA UMR CNRS 5113), 2010. "Spatial distribution of innovative activities and economic performances: A geographical-friendly model," Cahiers du GREThA 2010-11, Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée.
  14. Dusan Paredes, 2012. "Alternative theories for explaining the spatial wage inequality: a multilevel competition among human capital, NEG and amenities," Documentos de Trabajo en Economia y Ciencia Regional 20, Universidad Catolica del Norte, Chile, Department of Economics, revised Apr 2012.
  15. Pablo Martinelli, 2012. "Von Thünen South of the Alps : Access to Markets and Interwar Italian Agriculture," Working Papers in Economic History wp12-12, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Historia Económica e Instituciones.
  16. Marion Drut & Aurélie MAHIEUX, 2014. "Correcting agglomeration economies: How air pollution matters," Working Papers hal-01007019, HAL.

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