Absorptive Capacity and the Growth Effects of Regional Transfers: A Regression Discontinuity Design with Heterogeneous Treatment Effects
AbstractTransfers to individuals, firms, and regions are often regulated by threshold rules, giving rise to a regression discontinuity design. An example are transfers provided by the European Commission to regions of EU member states below a certain income level. Researchers have focused on estimation of the average treatment effect of this program, assuming that it does not vary in a systematic way across units. We suggest a regression discontinuity design which allows for parametric or nonparametric identification of heterogeneous average treatment effects that systematically vary with observable characteristics in order to shed light on the role of absorptive capacity in determining the impact of regional transfers on economic growth across regions in the European Union. The results suggest that only about 47% of the regions, namely those with a sufficiently high endowment with human capital and a high quality of government, are able to turn transfers under the Union's Objective 1 Structural Funds programme into faster growth. Those regions are the ones which are responsible for a positive average effect of the programme.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8474.
Date of creation: Jul 2011
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
- H54 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Infrastructures
- O40 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General
- R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-07-21 (All new papers)
- NEP-EUR-2011-07-21 (Microeconomic European Issues)
- NEP-GEO-2011-07-21 (Economic Geography)
- NEP-PBE-2011-07-21 (Public Economics)
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