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The Allocation of Talent: Implications for Growth

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  • Kevin M. Murphy
  • Andrei Shleifer
  • Robert W. Vishny

Abstract

A country's most talented people typically organize production by others, so they can spread their ability advantage over a larger scale. When they start firms, they innovate and foster growth, but when they become rent seekers, they only redistribute wealth and reduce growth. Occupational choice depends on returns to ability and to scale in each sector, on market size, and on compensation contracts. In most countries, rent seeking rewards talent more than entrepreneurship does, leading to stagnation. Our evidence shows that countries with a higher proportion of engineering college majors grow faster; whereas countries with a higher proportion of law concentrators grow slower.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3530.

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Date of creation: Dec 1990
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Publication status: published as The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol. CVI, pp. 503-530, May 1991.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3530

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  1. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1986. "Large Shareholders and Corporate Control," Scholarly Articles 3606237, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Krueger, Anne O, 1974. "The Political Economy of the Rent-Seeking Society," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(3), pages 291-303, June.
  3. Summers, Robert & Heston, Alan, 1988. "A New Set of International Comparisons of Real Product and Price Levels Estimates for 130 Countries, 1950-1985," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 34(1), pages 1-25, March.
  4. Barro, R.J., 1989. "Economic Growth In A Cross Section Of Countries," RCER Working Papers 201, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  5. Magee,Stephen P. & Brock,William A. & Young,Leslie, 1989. "Black Hole Tariffs and Endogenous Policy Theory," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521377003, April.
  6. Baumol, William J, 1990. "Entrepreneurship: Productive, Unproductive, and Destructive," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages 893-921, October.
  7. Robert E. Lucas Jr., 1978. "On the Size Distribution of Business Firms," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 9(2), pages 508-523, Autumn.
  8. Rosen, Sherwin, 1981. "The Economics of Superstars," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 845-58, December.
  9. Kuhn, Peter, 1988. "Unions in a General Equilibrium Model of Firm Formation," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 6(1), pages 62-82, January.
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  1. Le risorse per la crescita
    by lippi1968 in Noise from Amerika on 2012-07-01 22:12:38
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