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The Producer Service Sector in Italy: Long-term Growth and its Local Determinants

Listed author(s):
  • Giacinto Micucci
  • Valter di Giacinto

Abstract This paper analyses the local determinants of producer service growth in Italy, focusing on agglomeration economies. From a methodological viewpoint, we address the critique on the Glaeser et al. (1992)-type employment growth regressions by deriving a reduced-form equation that incorporates variables affecting both local labour supply and local demand for the industry's output. At the same time, by implementing an error-correction approach, we improve on previous dynamic specifications that do not allow for short-term fluctuations along the steady-state growth path. It turns out that long-run employment growth is positively influenced by specialization, with a smaller role played by urbanization externalities. These results are in line with the empirical findings of recent analysis based on firm-level TFP (total factor productivity) estimates, thus providing them with a valuable cross-validation, considering that TFP measurement is far from being undisputed, especially in the service sector. Le secteur tertiaire en Italie: expansion à long terme et ses déterminants locaux RÉSUMÉ La présente communication analyse les déterminants locaux de la croissance des services de producteur en Italie, en se concentrant sur les économies des agglomérations. Du point de vue de la méthodologie, nous axons la critique sur les régressions de la croissance de l'emploi du type Glaeser et al. (1992), en dérivant une équation à forme réduite incorporant des variables affectant l'offre de main-d’æuvre locale et la demande locale pour la production industrielle. Parallèlement, et en réalisant une méthode de rectification des erreurs, nous optimisons des spécifications dynamiques précédentes, qui ne tiennent pas compte des fluctuations à court terme le long du chemin de croissance équilibrée à taux constant. Il en ressort que la spécialisation influe de façon positive sur l'expansion de l'emploi à long terme, un rôle plus limité revenant à des facteurs externes de l'urbanisation. Ces résultats rejoignent les conclusions empiriques d'analyses effectuées récemment, basées sur des évaluations TFP au niveau d'entreprise, en apportant ainsi une importante validation croisée, les mesures TFP étant loin d’être contestées, en particulier dans le secteur tertiaire. El sector de los servicios de productor en Italia: el crecimiento a largo plazo y sus determinantes locales RÉSUMÉN Este trabajo analiza los determinantes locales del crecimiento de los servicios de productor en Italia, centrándose en las economías de aglomeración. Desde un punto de vista metodológico, tratamos la crítica sobre las regresiones del crecimiento de empleo del tipo Glaeser et al. (1992), derivando una ecuación de forma reducida que incorpora variables que afectan tanto al suministro de mano de obra local como a la demanda local en relación con la producción de la industria. Al mismo tiempo, mediante la implantación de un planteamiento de corrección de errores, mejoramos las especificaciones dinámicas anteriores, que no tienen en cuenta las fluctuaciones a corto plazo a lo largo del curso de crecimiento continuo del estado. El resultado es que el crecimiento del empleo a largo plazo es influido positivamente por la especialización, con una menor función desempeñada por las externalidades de urbanización. Estos resultados coinciden con los descubrimientos empíricos de análisis recientes basados en estimaciones de la PFT, las cuales, aunque la medición de la PFT está lejos de ser innegable, les aportan una valiosa validación sesgada, especialmente en el sector de servicios.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Spatial Economic Analysis.

Volume (Year): 4 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 391-425

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Handle: RePEc:taf:specan:v:4:y:2009:i:4:p:391-425
DOI: 10.1080/17421770903317637
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