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The curse of natural resources: An empirical investigation of U.S. counties

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  • James, Alex
  • Aadland, David

Abstract

Research consistently shows that natural resource dependence tends to be associated with lower economic growth. However, the studies typically focus on differences across nations or states. We fill a gap in the literature by testing the so-called resource curse at a more disaggregated county level. Our results show clear evidence that resource-dependent counties exhibit more anemic economic growth, even after controlling for state-specific effects, socio-demographic differences, initial income, and spatial correlation. A case study analysis of Maine and Wyoming, and the counties within, highlight the growth effects of specializing in natural resource extraction.

Suggested Citation

  • James, Alex & Aadland, David, 2011. "The curse of natural resources: An empirical investigation of U.S. counties," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 440-453, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:resene:v:33:y:2011:i:2:p:440-453
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    References listed on IDEAS

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