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Robust Growth Determinants


  • Doppelhofer, G.
  • Weeks, M.


This paper investigates the robustness of determinants of economic growth in the presence of model uncertainty, parameter heterogeneity and outliers. The robust model averaging approach introduced in the paper uses a flexible and parsimonious mixture modeling that allows for fat-tailed errors compared to the normal benchmark case. Applying robust model averaging to growth determinants, the paper finds that eight of eighteen variables found to be significantly related to economic growth by Sala-i-Martin et al. (2004) are sensitive to deviations from benchmark model averaging. For example, the GDP shares of mining or government consumption, are no longer robust or economically significant once deviations from the normal benchmark assumptions are allowed. The paper identifies outlying observations - most notably Botswana - in explaining economic growth in a cross-section of countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Doppelhofer, G. & Weeks, M., 2011. "Robust Growth Determinants," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1117, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  • Handle: RePEc:cam:camdae:1117

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Rockey, James & Temple, Jonathan, 2016. "Growth econometrics for agnostics and true believers," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 86-102.
    2. Havranek, Tomas & Horvath, Roman & Irsova, Zuzana & Rusnak, Marek, 2015. "Cross-country heterogeneity in intertemporal substitution," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(1), pages 100-118.

    More about this item


    Determinants of Economic Growth; Robust Model Averaging; Heteroscedasticity; Outliers; Mixture models;

    JEL classification:

    • C11 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Bayesian Analysis: General
    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • C52 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Model Evaluation, Validation, and Selection
    • O20 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - General
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • O50 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - General

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