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The Direction of Technical Change in Capital-Resource Economies

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Abstract

We analyze a multi-sector growth model with directed technical change where man-made capital and exhaustible resources are essen- tial for production. The relative profitability of factor-specific inno- vations endogenously determines whether technical progress will be capital- or resource-augmenting. We show that convergence to bal- anced growth implies zero capital-augmenting innovations: in the long run, the economy exhibits purely resource-augmenting technical change. This result provides sound microfoundations for the broad class of models of exogenous/endogenous growth where resource-aug- menting progress is required to sustain consumption in the long run, contradicting the view that these models are conceptually biased in favor of sustainability.

Suggested Citation

  • Corrado Di Maria & Simone Valente, 2006. "The Direction of Technical Change in Capital-Resource Economies," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 06/50, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
  • Handle: RePEc:eth:wpswif:06-50
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    13. Sjak Smulders & Lucas Bretschger & Hannes Egli, 2005. "Economic growth and the diffusion of clean technologies : explaining environmental Kuznets," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 05/42, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
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    Cited by:

    1. Daron Acemoglu & Philippe Aghion & Leonardo Bursztyn & David Hemous, 2012. "The Environment and Directed Technical Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 131-166, February.
    2. Pietro Peretto & Simone Valente, 2015. "Growth on a finite planet: resources, technology and population in the long run," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 305-331, September.
    3. Juergen Antony, 2007. "Depletion of Non-Renewable Resources and Endogenous Technical Change," Working Papers 027, Bavarian Graduate Program in Economics (BGPE).
    4. Daubanes, Julien & Grimaud, André & Rougé, Luc, 2012. "Green Paradox and Directed Technical Change: The Effects of Subsidies to Clean R&D," IDEI Working Papers 743, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
    5. Groth, Christian & Ricci, Francesco, 2011. "Optimal growth when environmental quality is a research asset," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(4), pages 340-352, December.
    6. Karen Pittel & Lucas Bretschger, 2010. "The implications of heterogeneous resource intensities on technical change and growth," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 43(4), pages 1173-1197, November.
    7. Lucas Bretschger & Simone Valente, 2011. "International trade and net investment: theory and evidence," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 197-224, June.
    8. Gerard van der Meijden & Sjak Smulders, 2014. "Carbon Lock-In: The Role of Expectations," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 14-100/VIII, Tinbergen Institute, revised 14 Jul 2016.
    9. Manh Hung Nguyen & Phu Nguyen Van, 2008. "Growth and convergence in a model with renewable and nonrenewable resources," Working Papers 21, Development and Policies Research Center (DEPOCEN), Vietnam.
    10. Pittel, Karen & Rübbelke, Dirk T. G., . "Energy supply and the sustainability of endogenous growth," Chapters in Economics, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    11. Simone Valente, 2009. "Accumulation Regimes in Dynastic Economies with Resource Dependence and Habit Formation," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 09/101, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
    12. Simone Valente, 2007. "Human Capital, Resource Constraints and Intergenerational Fairness," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 07/68, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
    13. Tobias Kronenberg, 2010. "Energy conservation, unemployment and the direction of technical change," Portuguese Economic Journal, Springer;Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestao, vol. 9(1), pages 1-17, April.
    14. Francesco Ricci, "undated". "Resource Conservation and Directed R&D as Strategic Complements," Energy and Environmental Modeling 2007 24000052, EcoMod.
    15. Christian Groth, 2006. "A New-Growth Perspective on Non-Renewable Resources," Discussion Papers 06-26, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
    16. Simone Valente, 2008. "Optimal Growth, Genuine Savings And Long-Run Dynamics," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 55(2), pages 210-226, May.
    17. Valente, Simone, 2011. "Intergenerational externalities, sustainability and welfare—The ambiguous effect of optimal policies on resource depletion," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 995-1014.
    18. Karen Pittel & Lucas Bretschger, 2010. "Sectoral Hetorgeneity, Resoure Depletion, and Directed Technical Change: theory and policy," OxCarre Working Papers 039, Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Endogenous Growth; Directed Technical Change; Exhaustible Resources; Sustainability;

    JEL classification:

    • 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
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models
    • Q32 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Exhaustible Resources and Economic Development

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