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The Low-Skill, Low-Quality Trap: Strategic Complementarities between Human Capital and R&D


  • Redding, Stephen


This paper investigates the relationship between investments in human capital and R&D in a model of endogenous growth. Both forms of investment exhibit pecuniary externalities and are, as a result, strategic complements. Multiple equilibria may occur for intermediate parameter values and the present analysis may be seen as providing a theoretical rationalization for the idea that an economy may become trapped in a 'low-skills' equilibrium, characterized by a poorly trained workforce and low product quality. In the presence of multiple equilibria, there may be a welfare-improving role for government policy in coordinating expectations. Copyright 1996 by Royal Economic Society.

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  • Redding, Stephen, 1996. "The Low-Skill, Low-Quality Trap: Strategic Complementarities between Human Capital and R&D," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(435), pages 458-470, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:106:y:1996:i:435:p:458-70

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Brown, William & Walsh, Janet, 1991. "Pay Determination in Britain in the 1980s; the Anatomy of Decentralization," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(1), pages 44-59, Spring.
    2. Clark, Simon, 1991. "Inventory Accumulation, Wages, and Employment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(405), pages 230-238, March.
    3. Nickell, Stephen J, 1987. "Why Is Wage Inflation in Britain So High?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 49(1), pages 103-128, February.
    4. Ingram, Peter N, 1991. "Ten Years of Manufacturing Wage Settlements: 1979-89," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(1), pages 93-106, Spring.
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