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Nonergodic Economic Growth

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  • Steven N. Durlauf

Abstract

This paper explores the role of complementarities and incomplete markets in economic growth. We analyze the evolution of an economy composed of a countable set of industries. Individual industries exhibit non-convexities in production and are linked by localized technological complementarities. These complementarities, when strong enough, produce multiple equilibria in long-run economic activity. The equilibria have a simple probabilistic structure that demonstrates how local interactions can affect the aggregate equilibrium. The model generates interesting cross-sectional and intertemporal dynamics as coordination problems become the source of aggregate and individual industry volatility. The model also illustrates how the growth of leading sectors can cause a takeoff to a high aggregate production equilibrium.

Suggested Citation

  • Steven N. Durlauf, 1993. "Nonergodic Economic Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(2), pages 349-366.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:60:y:1993:i:2:p:349-366.
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    1. Romer, Paul M, 1986. "Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-1037, October.
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    6. Murphy, Kevin M & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1989. "Industrialization and the Big Push," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1003-1026, October.
    7. Costas Azariadis & Allan Drazen, 1990. "Threshold Externalities in Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 501-526.
    8. Larry E. Jones & Rodolfo Manuelli, 1990. "A Convex Model of Equilibrium Growth," NBER Working Papers 3241, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1990. "The Economics of Modern Manufacturing: Technology, Strategy, and Organization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 511-528, June.
    10. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
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