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Neighbors and the Evolution of the Comparative Advantage of Nations: Evidence of International Knowledge Diffusion?

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  • Bahar, Dany

    (Harvard University)

  • Hausmann, Ricardo

    (Harvard University)

  • Hidalgo, Cesar A.

    (MIT)

Abstract

The literature on knowledge diffusion shows that it decays strongly with distance. In this paper we document that the probability that a product is added to a country's export basket is, on average, 65% larger if a neighboring country is a successful exporter of that same product. For existing products, having a neighbor with comparative advantage in them is associated with a growth of exports that is higher by 1.5 percent per annum. While these results could be driven by a common third factor that escapes our controls, they are what would be expected from the localized character of knowledge diffusion.

Suggested Citation

  • Bahar, Dany & Hausmann, Ricardo & Hidalgo, Cesar A., 2013. "Neighbors and the Evolution of the Comparative Advantage of Nations: Evidence of International Knowledge Diffusion?," Working Paper Series rwp13-025, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecl:harjfk:rwp13-025
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    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • F62 - International Economics - - Economic Impacts of Globalization - - - Macroeconomic Impacts
    • F63 - International Economics - - Economic Impacts of Globalization - - - Economic Development
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • 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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