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Quality Improvements in Models of Growth

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  • Sala-i-Martin, X.
  • Barro, R.J.

Abstract

Technological progress takes the form of improvements in quality of an array of intermediate inputs to production. In an equilibrium that is standard in the literature, all research is carried out by outsiders, and success means that the outsider replaces the incumbent as the industry leader. The equilibrium research intensity involves three considerations: leading-edge goods are priced above the competitive level, innovators value the extraction of monopoly rents from predecessors, and innovators regard their successes as temporary. We show that, if industry leaders have lower costs of research, then the leaders will do all the research in equilibrium. However, if the cost advantage is not too large, then the equilibrium research intensity and growth rate depend on the existence of the competitive fringe and take on the same values as in the standard solution. We discuss the departures from Pareto optimality and analyze the determination of the economy's rate of return and growth rate.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Yale - Economic Growth Center in its series Papers with number 715.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: 1994
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fth:yalegr:715

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Postal: U.S.A.; YALE UNIVERSITY, ECONOMIC GROWTH CENTER, YALE STATION NEW-HAVEN CONNECTICUT 06520 U.S.A
Phone: (203) 432-3610
Fax: (203) 432-3898
Web page: http://www.econ.yale.edu/~egcenter/
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Keywords: economic theory ; economic growth ; innovations ; technological change;

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References

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  1. Romer, Paul M, 1990. "Endogenous Technological Change," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages S71-102, October.
  2. Reinganum, Jennifer F., 1989. "The timing of innovation: Research, development, and diffusion," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 14, pages 849-908 Elsevier.
  3. 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.
  4. Ethier, Wilfred J, 1982. "National and International Returns to Scale in the Modern Theory of International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(3), pages 389-405, June.
  5. Spence, Michael, 1976. "Product Selection, Fixed Costs, and Monopolistic Competition," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(2), pages 217-35, June.
  6. Alwyn Young, 1993. "Substitution and Complementarity in Endogenous Innovation," NBER Working Papers 4256, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Sergio Rebelo, 1999. "Long Run Policy Analysis and Long Run Growth," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2114, David K. Levine.
  8. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth through Creative Destruction," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(2), pages 323-51, March.
  9. Elise Brezis & Paul Krugman & Daniel Tsiddon, 1991. "Leapfrogging: A Theory of Cycles in National Technological Leadership," NBER Working Papers 3886, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Young, Alwyn, 1993. "Substitution and Complementarity in Endogenous Innovation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(3), pages 775-807, August.
  11. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Scholarly Articles 12490578, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. Piercarlo Zanchettin & Vincenzo Denicolò, 2009. "Leadership Cycles," Discussion Papers in Economics 09/25, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
  2. Smolny, Werner, 1997. "Endogenous innovations in a model of the firm: Theory and empirical application for West-German manufacturing firms," Discussion Papers 39, University of Konstanz, Center for International Labor Economics (CILE).

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