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Roads to innovation: Firm-level evidence from People's Republic of China (PRC)

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  • Wang, Xu
  • Xie, Zhuan
  • Zhang, Xiaobo
  • Huang, Yiping

Abstract

Although infrastructure and innovation play important roles in fostering a country's economic growth, discussion in the literature about how the two are connected is limited. This paper examines the impact of road density on firm innovation in the People's Republic of China. The analysis uses a matched patent database at the firm level and road information at the city level. Regional variation in the difficulty of constructing roads is used as an instrumental variable to address the potential endogeneity problem of the road variable. The empirical results show that a 10% improvement in road density increases the average number of approved patents per firm by 0.71%. Road development spurs innovation by enlarging market size and facilitating knowledge spillover.

Suggested Citation

  • Wang, Xu & Xie, Zhuan & Zhang, Xiaobo & Huang, Yiping, 2018. "Roads to innovation: Firm-level evidence from People's Republic of China (PRC)," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 154-170.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:49:y:2018:i:c:p:154-170
    DOI: 10.1016/j.chieco.2017.12.012
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    3. Olof Ejermo & Katrin Hussinger & Basheer Kalash & Torben Schubert, 2021. "Innovation in Malmö after the Öresund Bridge," Sciences Po publications 15/2021, Sciences Po.
    4. Bottasso, Anna & Conti, Maurizio & Robbiano, Simone & Santagata, Marta, 2020. "Roads to innovation: evidence from Italy," MPRA Paper 104735, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Gao, Yanyan & Zheng, Jianghuai, 2020. "The impact of high-speed rail on innovation: An empirical test of the companion innovation hypothesis of transportation improvement with China’s manufacturing firms," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 127(C).
    6. Zhao, Qifeng & Li, Zhen & Yu, Yihua, 2021. "Does top management quality promote innovation? Firm-level evidence from China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 65(C).
    7. Jun Chen & Jia Liu, 2021. "Incentive and uncertainty: the simultaneous effects of demand on innovation," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 126(9), pages 7743-7757, September.
    8. Liu, Min & Dries, Liesbeth & Heijman, Wim & Zhu, Xueqin & Deng, Xiangzheng & Huang, Jikun, 2019. "Land tenure reform and grassland degradation in Inner Mongolia, China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 181-198.
    9. Liu, Min & Dries, Liesbeth & Huang, Jikun & Min, Shi & Tang, Jianjun, 2019. "The impacts of the eco-environmental policy on grassland degradation and livestock production in Inner Mongolia, China: An empirical analysis based on the simultaneous equation model," Land Use Policy, Elsevier, vol. 88(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Infrastructure; Innovations; Transportation cost; Knowledge diffusion;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
    • R40 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - General

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