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Spatial Allocation of Capital: The Role of Risk Preferences


  • Udo Broll
  • Antonio Roldán-Ponce
  • Jack Wahl


Abstract This paper considers a model of spatial allocation of investment capital under uncertainty. We demonstrate that the spatial concentration of economic activity depends upon properties of risk preferences deeper than risk aversion. The degree of so-called relative prudence unambiguously decides whether or not the diversification of income risk favours the geographic dispersion of economic activity. In our framework we relate risk diversification with economic integration. Then there exists risk preferences so that spatial concentration of industry and capital is not affected by the degree of economic integration or segmentation of the regions. We also study the impact of net return regressibility upon spatial allocation. Affectation spatiale du capital: le rôle des préférences de risques RÉSUMÉ La présente communication se penche sur un modèle d'application spatiale du capital-investissement en présence d'incertitudes. Nous démontrons que la concentration spatiale de l'activité économique est tributaire de propriétés de préférences de risque plus profondes que l'aversion au risque. Le degré de la soi-disant prudence relative décide sans ambiguïté si la diversification des risques de revenus favorise la dispersion géographique de l'activité économique. Dans le cadre de notre étude, nous examinons la diversification du risque en fonction de l'intégration économique. Il existe également des préférences de risque, qui font en sorte que la concentration spatiale de l'industrie et du capital n'est pas affectée par le degré d'intégration économique de la segmentation des régions. Asignación espacial de capital: la función de las preferencias de riesgo EXTRACTO Este trabajo considera un modelo de asignación espacial de capital de inversión en situación incierta. Demostramos que la concentración espacial de actividad económica depende más profundamente de las propiedades de las preferencias de riesgo que de la aversión al riesgo. El grado de la llamada prudencia relativa decide sin ambigüedad si la diversificación del riesgo de ingresos favorece, o no, la dispersión geográfica de la actividad económica. En nuestro marco, relacionamos la diversificación del riesgo con la integración económica. Asimismo, existen preferencias de riesgos para que la concentración espacial de la industria y el capital no sean afectados por el grado de integración o segmentación económica de las regiones.

Suggested Citation

  • Udo Broll & Antonio Roldán-Ponce & Jack Wahl, 2010. "Spatial Allocation of Capital: The Role of Risk Preferences," Spatial Economic Analysis, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(4), pages 389-398.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:specan:v:5:y:2010:i:4:p:389-398 DOI: 10.1080/17421772.2010.516442

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Andrés Rodríguez-Pose, 2013. "Do Institutions Matter for Regional Development?," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(7), pages 1034-1047, July.
    2. Joseph Byrne & Giorgio Fazio & Davide Piacentino, 2009. "Total Factor Productivity Convergence among Italian Regions: Some Evidence from Panel Unit Root Tests," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(1), pages 63-76.
    3. Rodriguez-Pose, Andres, 1998. "Dynamics of Regional Growth in Europe: Social and Political Factors," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198233831, June.
    4. Mundlak, Yair, 1978. "On the Pooling of Time Series and Cross Section Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 69-85, January.
    5. Luigi Guiso & Fabiano Schivardi, 2007. "Spillovers in Industrial Districts," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(516), pages 68-93, January.
    6. Bontempi, Maria Elena & Golinelli, Roberto & Parigi, Giuseppe, 2010. "Why demand uncertainty curbs investment: Evidence from a panel of Italian manufacturing firms," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 218-238, March.
    7. I.P. Ottaviano, Gianmarco, 2008. "Infrastructure and economic geography: An overview of theory and evidence," EIB Papers 6/2008, European Investment Bank, Economics Department.
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    More about this item


    Spatial allocation; inter-regional disparity; risk aversion; prudence; regression; D81; R12; R30; R38;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
    • R30 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - General
    • R38 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Government Policy


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