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Inclusive Institutions and Long-Run Misallocation

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This research advances the hypothesis that resource abundant economies characterized by a socially cohesive workforce and network externalities triggered the emergence of efficiency-enhancing inclusive institutions designed to restrict mobility and to enhance the attachment of community members to the local labor market. However, the persistence of these institutions, and the inter-generational transmission of their value, ultimately resulted in the misallocation of talents across occupations and a reduction in the long-run level of income per capita in the economy as a whole. Exploiting variation in resource intensity across the American Midwest during its initial development, the empirical analysis establishes that higher initial resource-intensity in 1860 is indeed associated with greater community participation over the subsequent 150 years, and reduced mobility and labor misallocation in the contemporary period.

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Paper provided by Brown University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2013-9.

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Date of creation: 2013
Handle: RePEc:bro:econwp:2013-9
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Department of Economics, Brown University, Providence, RI 02912

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  1. Anastasia Litina, 2016. "Natural land productivity, cooperation and comparative development," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 21(4), pages 351-408, December.
  2. Joseph G. Altonji & Todd E. Elder & Christopher R. Taber, 2005. "Selection on Observed and Unobserved Variables: Assessing the Effectiveness of Catholic Schools," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 151-184, February.
  3. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
  4. Oded Galor & Omer Moav & Dietrich Vollrath, 2009. "Inequality in Landownership, the Emergence of Human-Capital Promoting Institutions, and the Great Divergence," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(1), pages 143-179.
  5. repec:hrv:faseco:4553034 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Alberto Alesina & Reza Baqir & Caroline Hoxby, 2004. "Political Jurisdictions in Heterogeneous Communities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 348-396, April.
  7. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2002. "Reversal of Fortune: Geography and Institutions in the Making of the Modern World Income Distribution," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1231-1294.
  8. Alberto Alesina & Reza Baqir & William Easterly, 1999. "Public Goods and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1243-1284.
  9. Suresh Naidu & Noam Yuchtman, 2013. "Coercive Contract Enforcement: Law and the Labor Market in Nineteenth Century Industrial Britain," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(1), pages 107-144, February.
  10. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2006. "Das Human-Kapital: A Theory of the Demise of the Class Structure," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(1), pages 85-117.
  11. Suresh Naidu & Noam Yuchtman, 2011. "Coercive Contract Enforcement: Law and the Labor Market in 19th Century Industrial Britain," NBER Working Papers 17051, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. William N. Evans & Robert M. Schwab, 1995. "Finishing High School and Starting College: Do Catholic Schools Make a Difference?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(4), pages 941-974.
  13. Kaivan Munshi & Mark Rosenzweig, 2006. "Traditional Institutions Meet the Modern World: Caste, Gender, and Schooling Choice in a Globalizing Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1225-1252, September.
  14. Margo, Robert A., 1999. "Regional Wage Gaps and the Settlement of the Midwest," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 128-143, April.
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