Why England? Demand, Growth and Inequality During the Industrial Revolution
Why was England first? And why Europe? We present a probabilistic model that builds on big-push models by Murphy, Shleifer and Vishny (1989), combined with hierarchical preferences. The interaction of exogenous demographic factors (in particular the English low-pressure variant of the European marriage pattern) and redistributive institutions such as the "old Poor Law" combined to make an Industrial Revolution more likely. Essentially, industrialization is the result of having a critical mass of consumers that is "rich enough" to afford (potentially) mass-produced goods. Our model is then calibrated to match the main characteristics of the English economy in 1750 and the observed transition until 1850. This allows us to address explicitly one of the key features of the British Industrial Revolution unearthed by economic historians over the last three decades: the slowness of productivity and output change. In our calibration, we find that the probability of Britain industrializing is 5 times larger than France. Contrary to the recent argument by Pomeranz, China in the 18th century had essentially no chance to industrialize at all. This difference is decomposed into a demographic and a policy component, with the former being far more important than the latter.
|Date of creation:||Jun 2005|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +34 93 542-1222
Fax: +34 93 542-1223
Web page: http://www.barcelonagse.eu
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Charles I. Jones, 1999.
"Was an Industrial Revolution Inevitable? Economic Growth Over the Very Long Run,"
NBER Working Papers
7375, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Jones Charles I., 2001. "Was an Industrial Revolution Inevitable? Economic Growth Over the Very Long Run," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 1(2), pages 1-45, August.
- Charles I. Jones, . "Was an Industrial Revolution Inevitable? Economic Growth Over the Very Long Run," Working Papers 99008, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
- Gary D. Hansen & Edward C. Prescott, 1998.
"Malthus to Solow,"
NBER Working Papers
6858, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Nicholas Crafts, 2004.
"Steam as a general purpose technology: A growth accounting perspective,"
Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(495), pages 338-351, 04.
- Nicholas Crafts, 2003. "Steam as a general purpose technology: a growth accounting perspective," Economic History Working Papers 22354, London School of Economics and Political Science, Department of Economic History.
- Horrell, Sara, 1996. "Home Demand and British Industrialization," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(03), pages 561-604, September.
- Nicholas Crafts, 2005. "The First Industrial Revolution: Resolving the Slow Growth/Rapid Industrialization Paradox," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 525-534, 04/05.
- Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2002.
"Natural Selection And The Origin Of Economic Growth,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1133-1191, November.
- Galor, Oded & Moav, Omer, 2001. "Natural Selection and the Origin of Economic Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 2727, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Galor, Oded & Moav, Omer, 2000. "Natural Selection and the Origin of Economic Growth," Arbetsrapport 2000:5, Institute for Futures Studies.
- Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2000. "Natural Selection and the Origin of economic Growth," Working Papers 2000-18, Brown University, Department of Economics.
- Crafts, N. F. R., 1995. "Exogenous or Endogenous Growth? The Industrial Revolution Reconsidered," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 55(04), pages 745-772, December.
- Da Rin, Marco & Hellmann, Thomas, 2002.
"Banks as Catalysts for Industrialization,"
Journal of Financial Intermediation,
Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 366-397, October.
- Da Rin, Marco & Hellmann, Thomas F., 2002. "Banks as Catalysts for Industrialization," Research Papers 1398, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
- Marco Da Rin & Thomas Hellmann, 2000. "Banks as Catalysts for Industrialisation," FMG Discussion Papers dp343, Financial Markets Group.
- Marco Da Rin & Thomas Hellmann, 2001. "Banks as Catalysts for Industrialization," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 443, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
- Marco Da Rin & Thomas Hellmann, . "Banks as Catalysts for Industrialization," Working Papers 103, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
- Foellmi, Reto & Zweimuller, Josef, 2004.
"Inequality, market power, and product diversity,"
Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 139-145, January.
- Robert William Fogel, 1993. "New Sources and New Techniques for the Study of Secular Trends in Nutritional Status, Health, Mortality, and the Process of Aging," NBER Historical Working Papers 0026, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David S. Landes, 1994. "What room for accident in history?: explaining big changes by small events," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 47(4), pages 637-656, November.
- Feinstein, Charles, 1988. "The Rise and Fall of the Williamson Curve," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 48(03), pages 699-729, September.
- Robert W. Fogel, 1986.
"Nutrition and the Decline in Mortality since 1700: Some Preliminary Findings,"
in: Long-Term Factors in American Economic Growth, pages 439-556
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Robert W. Fogel, 1984. "Nutrition and the Decline in Mortality Since 1700: Some Preliminary Findings," NBER Working Papers 1402, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- N. F. R. Crafts, 1977. "Industrial Revolution in England and France: Some Thoughts on the Question, “Why was England First?”," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 30(3), pages 429-441, 08.
- Broadberry, Stephen N & Gupta, Bishnupriya, 2005. "The Early Modern Great Divergence: Wages, Prices and Economic Development in Europe and Asia, 1500-1800," CEPR Discussion Papers 4947, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Shachar, Ari Y. Ben, 1984. "Demand versus Supply in the Industrial Revolution: A Comment," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 44(03), pages 801-805, September.
- N. F. R. Crafts & C. K. Harley, 1992. "Output growth and the British industrial revolution: a restatement of the Crafts-Harley view," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 45(4), pages 703-730, November.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:208. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bruno Guallar)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.