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A regression tree algorithm for the identification of convergence clubs

  • Postiglione, Paolo
  • Benedetti, Roberto
  • Lafratta, Giovanni

The concept of convergence clubs is analyzed and compared with classical methods for the study of economic [beta]-convergence, which often consider the entire data set as one sample. A technique for the identification of convergence clubs is proposed. The algorithm is based on a modified version of the usual regression trees procedure. The objective function of the method is represented by the difference among the parameters of the model under investigation. Different strategies are adopted in the definition of the model used in the objective function of the algorithm. The first is the classical non-spatial [beta]-convergence model. The others are modified [beta]-convergence models which take into account the dependence showed by spatially distributed data. The proposed procedure identifies situation of local stationarity in the economic growth of the different regions: a group of regions is divided into two sub-groups if the parameter estimates are significantly different among them. The algorithm is applied to 191 European regions for the period 1980-2002. Given the adaptability of the algorithm, its implementation provides a flexible tool for the use of any regression model in the analysis of non-stationary spatial data.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Computational Statistics & Data Analysis.

Volume (Year): 54 (2010)
Issue (Month): 11 (November)
Pages: 2776-2785

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Handle: RePEc:eee:csdana:v:54:y:2010:i:11:p:2776-2785
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