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The importance of the embodied question revisited

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  • Raouf Boucekkine
  • Fernando del Río
  • Omar Licandro

Abstract

In order to assess the importance of embodiment, we build up an endogenous growth model in which learning by doing is the engine of both embodied and disembodied technological progress. In sharp contrast to Phelps (1962), we show that a change in the composition of technical change affects the growth rate in the long run. We also provide an alternative explanation for the productivity slowdown: an increase in the learning efficiency of the capital goods sector, permanently lowers the growth rate of technological progress, by increasing the obsolescence costs of investment. The productivity slowdown occurs together with a rise in the rate of decline of investment goods prices. Finally, we show that an increase in the embodied fraction of technical change reduces the gap between the optimal and the desentralized growth rates.

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Paper provided by FEDEA in its series Working Papers with number 99-13.

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Handle: RePEc:fda:fdaddt:99-13

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  1. Martin Neil Baily & Eric J. Bartelsman & John Haltiwanger, 1994. "Downsizing and Productivity Growth: Myth or Reality?," NBER Working Papers 4741, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Boucekkine, Raouf, et al, 1998. " Creative Destruction, Investment Volatility, and the Average Age of Capital," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 3(4), pages 361-84, December.
  3. Jeremy Greenwood & Boyan Jovanovic, 1998. "Accounting for Growth," NBER Working Papers 6647, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • Jeremy Greenwood & Boyan Jovanovic, 2001. "Accounting for Growth," NBER Chapters, in: New Developments in Productivity Analysis, pages 179-224 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Krusell, Per, 1997. "Long-Run Implications of Investment-Specific Technological Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 342-62, June.
  5. Boucekkine, R. & Germain, M. & Licandro, O., . "Replacement echoes in the vintage capital growth model," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1275, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  6. Parente Stephen L., 1994. "Technology Adoption, Learning-by-Doing, and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 346-369, August.
  7. Greenwood, J. & Hercowitz, Z. & Krusell, P., 1998. "The Role of Investment-Specific Technological Change in the Business Cycle," RCER Working Papers 449, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  8. Benhabib, Jess & Rustichini, Aldo, 1991. "Vintage capital, investment, and growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 323-339, December.
  9. Raouf Boucekkine & Fernando del Río & Omar Licandro, . "Endogenous vs Exogenously Driven Fluctuations in Vintage Capital Models," Working Papers 98-19, FEDEA.
  10. Hercowitz, Zvi, 1998. "The 'embodiment' controversy: A review essay," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 217-224, February.
  11. Krusell, Per, 1998. " Investment-Specific R&D and the Decline in the Relative Price of Capital," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 3(2), pages 131-41, June.
  12. Martin Neil Baily, 1981. "Productivity and the Services of Capital and Labor," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 12(1), pages 1-66.
  13. Andreas Hornstein & Per Krusell, 1996. "Can Technology Improvements Cause Productivity Slowdowns?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1996, Volume 11, pages 209-276 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Paul M Romer, 1999. "Increasing Returns and Long-Run Growth," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2232, David K. Levine.
  15. Martin Neil Baily & Robert J. Gordon, 1988. "The Productivity Slowdown, Measurement Issues, and the Explosion of Computer Power," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(2), pages 347-432.
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Cited by:
  1. BOUCEKKINE, Raouf & DEL RIO, Fernando & LICANDRO, Omar, . "Embodied technological change, learning-by-doint and the productivity slowdown," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1629, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Raouf Boucekkine & David de la Croix & Yiannis Vailakis, 2002. "Technological Shocks and IT Revolutions," Recherches économiques de Louvain, De Boeck Université, vol. 68(1), pages 75-89.
  3. Raouf Boucekkine & Fernando del Río & Omar Licandro, . "Obsolescence Vs modernization in a Schumpeterian vintage capital model," Working Papers 2000-27, FEDEA.
  4. Ana Goicolea & Omar Licandro & Reyes Maroto, 2001. "Picos de inversión y productividad del trabajo en los establecimientos industriales madrileños," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 25(2), pages 255-288, May.

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