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The Farthest Needs the Best. Human Capital Composition and Development Specific Economic Growth

  • Fabio Manca

In this study we provide robust and compelling evidence of the larger effect of tertiary education on the growth of less developed countries and of the relatively smaller impact on the growth of developed ones. This argues for the accumulation of high skills especially in technologically under-developed countries and, contrary to the common wisdom, independently of the fact that these economies might be initially producing low(er)-technology goods or performing technology imitation. Our results are robust to the different measures used to proxy for human capital and to the adjustment for cross-country differences in the quality of education. Country-specific insitutional quality, as well as other various indicators such as the legal origin, the religious fractionalization and openness to trade have been used to control for the robustness of the results. They are also shown to speed up technology convergence confirming previous empirical literature. Our estimates tackle endogeneity by applying a variety of techniques such as IV (both panel and cross-section) and two-step efficient system GMM.

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File URL: http://degit.sam.sdu.dk/papers/degit_16/c016_048.pdf
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Paper provided by DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade in its series DEGIT Conference Papers with number c016_048.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:deg:conpap:c016_048
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  1. Daron Acemoglu & Philippe Aghion & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2006. "Distance to Frontier, Selection, and Economic Growth," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(1), pages 37-74, 03.
  2. Michelle P. Connolly & Diego Valderrama, 2005. "North-South technological diffusion and dynamic gains from trade," Working Paper Series 2004-24, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  3. Harris, Christopher & Howitt, Peter & Vickers, John & Aghion, Philippe, 2001. "Competition, Imitation and Growth with Step-by-Step Innovation," Scholarly Articles 12375013, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  4. Manca, Fabio, 2010. "Technology catch-up and the role of institutions," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 1041-1053, December.
  5. Mansfield, Edwin & Schwartz, Mark & Wagner, Samuel, 1981. "Imitation Costs and Patents: An Empirical Study," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 91(364), pages 907-18, December.
  6. Benhabib, Jess & Spiegel, Mark M., 2005. "Human Capital and Technology Diffusion," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 13, pages 935-966 Elsevier.
  7. Aghion, Philippe, et al, 2001. "Competition, Imitation and Growth with Step-by-Step Innovation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(3), pages 467-92, July.
  8. Benhabib, Jess & Spiegel, Mark M., 1994. "The role of human capital in economic development evidence from aggregate cross-country data," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 143-173, October.
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