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Diasporas, Diversity, and Economic Activity: Evidence from 18th-century Berlin

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  • Hornung, Erik

    (University of Cologne, Center for Macroeconomic Research)

Abstract

Diversity may either increase economic activity by utilizing complementarities in production or lead to costly conflict over resources. Using citydistrict panel data from 18th-century Berlin, a major center of refuge for persecuted minorities in early modern Europe, we analyze the relationship between changes in diversity and economic activity. Prussian rulers specifically invited groups of skilled immigrants, such as Jews, Huguenots, and Bohemians, to settle in Berlin’s newly-developed city quarters. We find that the resulting ethnic diversity fosters textile production in a much broader range of products than individual ethnicities, arguably reflecting complementarities between groups.Keywords: Ethnic Diversity, Minorities, Huguenots, Jews, Productivity JEL Classification: N33, J61, Z12, O33

Suggested Citation

  • Hornung, Erik, 2018. "Diasporas, Diversity, and Economic Activity: Evidence from 18th-century Berlin," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 390, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
  • Handle: RePEc:cge:wacage:390
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    Cited by:

    1. Gradstein, Mark & Justman, Moshe, 2019. "Cultural interaction and economic development: An overview," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 243-251.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • Z12 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Religion
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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