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Can Economic Growth Be Sustained? A Post-Malthusian Perspective

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  • Ruttan, Vernon W.

Abstract

During the late 1990's, a spurt of growth in output and productivity led the business press, and some economists, to proclaim that the economy had entered a new era in which the old rules that governed cyclical and secular growth in the past no longer obtained. In the paper I present the results of a two sector economic growth model that demonstrates that as the share of the goods producing sectors (agriculture and manufacturing) continue to decline the service sector will have to bear almost the entire burden of sustaining productivity growth in the U.S. economy. A clear implication is that the rate of productivity growth, and the rate of output, will regress toward the rate of growth in its least productive sectors.

Suggested Citation

  • Ruttan, Vernon W., 2002. "Can Economic Growth Be Sustained? A Post-Malthusian Perspective," Staff Papers 14276, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:umaesp:14276
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    References listed on IDEAS

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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.
    2. Dale W. Jorgenson & Kevin J. Stiroh, 2000. "Raising the Speed Limit: U.S. Economic Growth in the Information Age," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 31(1), pages 125-236.
    3. Nordhaus, William D, 1973. "World Dynamics: Measurement Without Data," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 83(332), pages 1156-1183, December.
    4. Robert E. Lucas, 2000. "Some Macroeconomics for the 21st Century," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(1), pages 159-168, Winter.
    5. Vernon Ruttan, 1998. "The new growth theory and development economics: A survey," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(2), pages 1-26.
    6. 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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    Cited by:

    1. Neves Sequeira Tiago & Reis Ana B, 2006. "Human Capital Composition, R&D and the Increasing Role of Services," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 1-25, June.

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    Keywords

    International Development;

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