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Empirical Tests of the Factor Abundance Theory: What Do They Tell Us?


  • Donald R. Davis

    (Harvard University

  • David E. Weinstein

    (Harvard University
    University of Michigan)


Beamer and Levinsohn (1995) have recently proposed a formula for empirical work in international macroeconomics summarized by the injunction to "Estimate, Don't Test!" This is based on a perception that much of the empirical work has failed to be influential as it tests propositions we know ex ante to be false. We argue that the empirical work has been more influential than they suggest. We use the example of recent work on the Heckscher-Ohlin-Vanek model of trade to show how a cumulation of tests may be influential, even as no one test on its own would be.

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  • Donald R. Davis & David E. Weinstein, 1996. "Empirical Tests of the Factor Abundance Theory: What Do They Tell Us?," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 22(4), pages 433-440, Fall.
  • Handle: RePEc:eej:eeconj:v:22:y:1996:i:4:p:433-440

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mansfield, Edwin & Schwartz, Mark & Wagner, Samuel, 1981. "Imitation Costs and Patents: An Empirical Study," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 91(364), pages 907-918, December.
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    Heckscher Ohlin;

    JEL classification:

    • F11 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Neoclassical Models of Trade


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