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Railroad expansion and entrepreneurship: Evidence from Meiji Japan

  • John Tang
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    Railroads in Meiji Japan are credited with facilitating factor mobility as well as access to human and financial capital, but the impact on firms is unclear. Using a newly developed firm-level dataset and a difference-in-differences model that exploits the temporal and spatial variation of railroad expansion, I assess the relationship between railways and firm activity across Japan. Results indicate that railroad expansion corresponded with increased firm activity, particularly in manufacturing, although this effect is mitigated in less populous regions. These findings are consistent with industrial agglomeration in areas with larger markets and earlier development among both new and existing establishments.

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    File URL: https://crawford.anu.edu.au/pdf/ajrc/wpapers/2013/201302.pdf
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    Paper provided by Australia-Japan Research Centre, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University in its series AJRC Working Papers with number 1302.

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    Length: 32 pages
    Date of creation: 2013
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:csg:ajrcwp:1302
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Canberra ACT 2601
    Phone: (61-2) 6249 3780
    Fax: (61-2) 6249 3941
    Web page: https://crawford.anu.edu.au/research_units/ajrc/
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    1. Dave Donaldson, 2010. "Railroads of the Raj: Estimating the Impact of Transportation Infrastructure," NBER Working Papers 16487, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Tim Leunig, 2010. "Social Savings," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(5), pages 775-800, December.
    3. Nicholas Crafts & Abay Mulatu, 2004. "How did the location of industry respond to falling transport costs in Britain before World War 1?," Economic History Working Papers 22555, London School of Economics and Political Science, Department of Economic History.
    4. David Card & Alan B. Krueger, 1993. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania," NBER Working Papers 4509, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. John P. Tang, 2011. "Technological leadership and late development: evidence from Meiji Japan, 1868–1912," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 64(s1), pages 99-116, February.
    6. Jeremy Atack & Fred Bateman & Michael Haines & Robert A. Margo, 2009. "Did Railroads Induce or Follow Economic Growth? Urbanization and Population Growth in the American Midwest, 1850-60," NBER Working Papers 14640, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Marcus DEJARDIN, 2001. "Entrepreneurship and Economic Growth: An Obvious Conjunction?," Development and Comp Systems 0110010, EconWPA.
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