Steam as a general purpose technology: a growth accounting perspective
AbstractThe contribution of steam to British economic growth in the nineteenth century is estimated using growth accounting methods similar to those recently employed to examine the role of ICT. The results indicate that steam contributed little to growth before 1830 and had its peak impact about a hundred years after Watt's famous invention. Only with the advent of high-pressure steam after 1850 did the technology realise its potential. Compared with ICT, steam's impact on the annual rate of growth was modest. It is unlikely that these conclusions are vulnerable to quantification of hitherto unmeasured TFP spillovers. Copyright 2004 Royal Economic Society.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by London School of Economics and Political Science, Department of Economic History in its series Economic History Working Papers with number 22354.
Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: May 2003
Date of revision:
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Postal: LSE, Dept. of Economic History Houghton Street London, WC2A 2AE, U.K.
Phone: +44 (0) 20 7955 7084
Web page: http://www.lse.ac.uk/economicHistory/
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Other versions of this item:
- Nicholas Crafts, 2004. "Steam as a general purpose technology: A growth accounting perspective," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(495), pages 338-351, 04.
- O3 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights
- N0 - Economic History - - General
- F3 - International Economics - - International Finance
- G3 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance
- B1 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought through 1925
- O52 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Europe
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