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A Closed Economy Model of Horizontal and Vertical Product Differentiation: The Case of Innovation in Biotechnology

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  • Rohini Acharya
  • Thomas Ziesemer

Abstract

In endogenous growth theory models have either increasing or constant ranges of product variety. Developments in modem biotechnology however show cases of increasing, decreasing or constant ranges of product variants. We present a simple endogenous growth model allowing for all of these three cases in one model. Quality weights that are exponential in the index of goods are multiplied to the quantity of goods in a love-of-variety utility function. Consumers prefer not to buy goods which are too expensive relative to their quality. The presence or absence of cumulated knowledge determines whether licensing fees, endogenous fixed costs for and the number of producers and the quantities produced are falling or constant, thereby allowing more or less room for variety in household budgets. Whereas new goods always appear, old goods may be selected away or are even reselected. The case of pure love-of-variety and total creative destruction are limiting cases in this model and cases of decreasing variety or initially increasing and later decreasing variety are additions to the present literature. The highly non-linear dynamics of the model are presented in simulations.

Suggested Citation

  • Rohini Acharya & Thomas Ziesemer, 1996. "A Closed Economy Model of Horizontal and Vertical Product Differentiation: The Case of Innovation in Biotechnology," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(3), pages 245-264.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:ecinnt:v:4:y:1996:i:3:p:245-264
    DOI: 10.1080/10438599600000012
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth through Creative Destruction," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(2), pages 323-351, March.
    2. E. S. Phelps, 1966. "Models of Technical Progress and the Golden Rule of Research," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 33(2), pages 133-145.
    3. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1991. "Quality Ladders in the Theory of Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(1), pages 43-61.
    4. Filip Abraham, 1994. "Social protection and regional convergence in a European Monetary Union," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 89-114, March.
    5. Grossman, Gene M & Helpman, Elhanan, 1990. "Comparative Advantage and Long-run Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(4), pages 796-815, September.
    6. Trostel, Philip A, 1993. "The Effect of Taxation on Human Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 327-350, April.
    7. Young, Alwyn, 1993. "Invention and Bounded Learning by Doing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 443-472, June.
    8. Alwyn Young, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," NBER Working Papers 3577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1991. "Quality Ladders and Product Cycles," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 557-586.
    10. Alwyn Young, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 369-405.
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    Cited by:

    1. Stoneman, Paul, 2011. "Soft Innovation: Economics, Product Aesthetics, and the Creative Industries," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199697021.
    2. Das, Gouranga Gopal, 2005. "Information age to genetic revolution: Embodied technology transfer and assimilation — A tale of two technologies," MPRA Paper 37250, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2006.
    3. Schneider, Johannes & Ziesemer, Thomas, 1994. "What's New and What's Old in New Growth Theory: Endogenous Technology, Microfoundation, and Growth Rate Predictions," MPRA Paper 56132, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Biotechnology; growth; innovation; product differentiation J.E.L. Codes: L65; O31; 41;

    JEL classification:

    • L65 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Chemicals; Rubber; Drugs; Biotechnology; Plastics
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives

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