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On technical change in the elasticities of resource inputs

  • GROWIEC, Jakub
  • SCHUMACHER, Ingmar

This article considers an economy whose production function takes both renewable and non-renewable resources as inputs. We extend the current literature by allowing for exogenous technical change in the elasticity of substitution betweenthese two types of resources. In addition, we study the consequences of biased technical change which alters the resources? relative productivities. We derive long-run asymptotic results, which we use to compare several cases. In the benchmark caseof no technical change, our results are close to those obtained by Dasgupta and Heal (1974). In the case of technical change in the elasticity of substitution, we observe that this kind of technical change helps obtain positive long-run production despite the depletion of non-renewable resources. In the biased technical change case, longrun production is only possible either if non-renewable resources are non-essential or if biased technical change is quick enough to compensate for the decreasing flowof non-renewable resources. We embed our production function in an optimal growth model and study its dynamics. As a steady state (or a balanced growth path) is only attainable as time goes to infinity, we resort to numerical simulations to convey what is happening during the short and medium run. Our results provide new considerations for the debate on natural resources. We suggest that technical change should be directed to the resource which is most important for production.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) in its series CORE Discussion Papers with number 2006063.

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Date of creation: 00 Jun 2006
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Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2006063
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  1. Growiec, Jakub & Schumacher, Ingmar, 2008. "On technical change in the elasticities of resource inputs," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 210-221, December.
  2. Cleveland, Cutler J. & Ruth, Matthias, 1997. "When, where, and by how much do biophysical limits constrain the economic process?: A survey of Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen's contribution to ecological economics," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 203-223, September.
  3. Romer, Paul M, 1990. "Endogenous Technological Change," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages S71-102, October.
  4. Grimaud, André & Rougé, Luc, 2003. "Polluting Non-Renewable Resources, Innovation and Growth : Welfare and Environmental Policy," IDEI Working Papers 206, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
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  6. Kaz Miyagiwa & Chris Papageorgiou, 2007. "Endogenous Aggregate Elasticity of Substitution," Emory Economics 0707, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
  7. Heal, G., 1990. "The Optimal Use Of Exhaustible Resources," Papers fb-_90-10, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  8. Christian Groth, 2003. "Strictly Endogenous Growth with Non-renewable Resources Implies an Unbounded Growth Rate," EPRU Working Paper Series 03-20, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  9. Lucas Bretschger, 2003. "Economics of technological change and the natural environment: how effective are innovations as a remedy for resource scarcity?," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 03/27, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich, revised Jun 2004.
  10. Groth, C. & Schou, P., 2000. "Can Nonrenewable Resources Alleviate the Knife-Edge Character of Endogenous Growth," Papers 00-02, Carleton - School of Public Administration.
  11. Andre, Francisco J. & Cerda, Emilio, 2005. "On natural resource substitution," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 233-246, December.
  12. de La Grandville, Olivier, 1989. "Erratum [In Quest of the Slutsky Diamond]," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(5), pages 1307, December.
  13. de La Grandville, Olivier, 1989. "In Quest of the Slutsky Diamond," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 468-81, June.
  14. Daron Acemoglu, 2003. "Labor- And Capital-Augmenting Technical Change," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(1), pages 1-37, 03.
  15. Poul Schou, 2000. "Polluting Non-Renewable Resources and Growth," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 16(2), pages 211-227, June.
  16. AMIGUES Jean-Pierre & MOREAUX Michel & RICCI Francesco, 2006. "Overcoming the Natural Resource Constraint Through Dedicated R&D Effort with Heterogenous Labor Supply," LERNA Working Papers 06.22.215, LERNA, University of Toulouse.
  17. Yuhn, Ky-hyang, 1991. "Economic Growth, Technical Change Biases, and the Elasticity of Substitution: A Test of the De La Grandville Hypothesis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(2), pages 340-46, May.
  18. Klump, Rainer & Preissler, Harald, 2000. " CES Production Functions and Economic Growth," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 102(1), pages 41-56, March.
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