Prizes for Basic Research â€“ Human Capital, Economic Might and the Shadow of History
This paper studies the impact of global factors on patterns of basic research across countries and time. We rely on the records of major scientific awards, and on data dealing with global economic and historical trends. Specifically, we investigate the degree to which scale or threshold effects account for countries share of major prizes [Nobel, Fields, Kyoto and Wolf]. We construct a stylized model, predicting that lagged relative GDP of a country relative to the GDP of all countries engaging in basic research is an important explanatory variable of countryâ€™s share of prizes. Scale effects imply that the association between the GDP share of a country and its prize share tends to be logistic -- above a threshold, there is a â€œtake offâ€ range, where the prize share increases at an accelerating rate with the relative GDP share of the country, until it reaches â€œmaturityâ€ stage. Our empirical analysis confirms the importance of lagged relative GDP in accounting for countriesâ€™ prize shares, and the presence of "winner takes all" scale effect benefiting the leader. Using measures of casualties during the wars, we find that the only significant effect can be found for a lag of 3 decades â€“ i.e., deaths in the war negatively impact the viability of basic research about 30 years after the fact. With more recent data, we document the growing importance of countries that used to be at the periphery of global research, possibly advancing towards the take off stage.
|Date of creation:||01 May 2006|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: (831) 459-2743
Fax: (831) 459-5077
Web page: http://www.escholarship.org/repec/ucscecon/
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Andrew K. Rose, 2006. "Size Really Doesn't Matter: In Search of a National Scale Effect," NBER Working Papers 12191, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David E. Weinstein & Donald R. Davis, 2004.
"Search for Multiple Equilibria in Urban Industrial Structure,"
Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings
639, Econometric Society.
- Donald R. Davis & David E. Weinstein, 2008. "A Search For Multiple Equilibria In Urban Industrial Structure," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(1), pages 29-65.
- Donald R. Davis & David E. Weinstein, 2004. "A Search for Multiple Equilibria in Urban Industrial Structure," NBER Working Papers 10252, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Krugman, Paul, 1991. "History versus Expectations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(2), pages 651-67, May.
- Lucas, Robert Jr, 1976. "Econometric policy evaluation: A critique," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 19-46, January.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cdl:ucscec:qt31b6j0wh. 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: (Lisa Schiff)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.