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Resource dependence and the causes of local economic growth: An empirical investigation

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  • Rian Hilmawan
  • Jeremy Clark

Abstract

Previous research has found that regional resource dependence in Indonesia has been positively associated with income growth, contrary to a ‘resource curse’. We test five potential causal mechanisms for this positive effect: spillovers to manufacturing or to agriculture, higher education provision, improved institutional quality and share of public spending on capital. We follow 390 Indonesian districts from 2006 to 2015, using four alternative resource dependence measures, and instrumenting for their potential endogeneity. We first confirm a positive overall effect of resource dependence on real per capita Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP), then test whether district resource dependence positively affects manufacturing, agriculture, education, public capital investment and institutional quality. We finally test whether these factors contribute to GRDP while reducing the remaining effect of resource dependence. We find that resource dependence may aid income in part by raising district institutional quality, which in turn raises GRDP. We also find little support for a ‘contingent curse’ hypothesis that resource dependence only benefits districts that already have higher institutional quality.

Suggested Citation

  • Rian Hilmawan & Jeremy Clark, 2021. "Resource dependence and the causes of local economic growth: An empirical investigation," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 65(3), pages 596-626, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajarec:v:65:y:2021:i:3:p:596-626
    DOI: 10.1111/1467-8489.12429
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • Q32 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Exhaustible Resources and Economic Development
    • Q33 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Resource Booms (Dutch Disease)
    • Q38 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Government Policy (includes OPEC Policy)
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

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