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The Impacts of Natural Disasters on Plants' Growth: Evidence from the Great Hanshin-Awaji (Kobe) Earthquake

  • TANAKA Ayumu

The Great Hanshin-Awaji (Kobe) Earthquake in 1995 affected numerous plants in Kobe. In this study, I focus on this earthquake and use plant-level data to re-examine the creative disaster hypothesis which states that natural disasters enhance the growth of firms or plants in the affected areas. I employ the matching method and the difference-in-difference (DID) approach to reveal the effects of the quake. The results show that the plants that survived in the most devastated districts of Kobe faced severe negative effects in terms of employment growth and value added in the subsequent three years. This result is not consistent with previous empirical studies that support the creative disaster hypothesis.

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Paper provided by Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI) in its series Discussion papers with number 13051.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:eti:dpaper:13051
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  1. Andrea Leiter & Harald Oberhofer & Paul Raschky, 2009. "Creative Disasters? Flooding Effects on Capital, Labour and Productivity Within European Firms," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 43(3), pages 333-350, July.
  2. UESUGI Iichiro & UCHIDA Hirofumi & UCHINO Taisuke & ONO Arito & HAZAMA Makoto & HOSONO Kaoru & MIYAKAWA Daisuke, 2012. "Natural Disasters and Firm Dynamics (Japanese)," Policy Discussion Papers (Japanese) 12001, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
  3. Mark Skidmore & Hideki Toya, 2005. "Economic Development and the Impacts of Natural Disasters," Working Papers 05-04, UW-Whitewater, Department of Economics.
  4. Crespo Cuaresma & Hlouskova & Obersteiner, 2008. "Natural Disasters As Creative Destruction? Evidence From Developing Countries," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 46(2), pages 214-226, 04.
  5. Strobl, Eric, 2012. "The economic growth impact of natural disasters in developing countries: Evidence from hurricane strikes in the Central American and Caribbean regions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(1), pages 130-141.
  6. Horwich, George, 2000. "Economic Lessons of the Kobe Earthquake," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 48(3), pages 521-42, April.
  7. Belasen, Ariel R. & Polachek, Solomon, 2007. "How Disasters Affect Local Labor Markets: The Effects of Hurricanes in Florida," IZA Discussion Papers 2976, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Adam Rose & Shu-Yi Liao, 2005. "Modeling Regional Economic Resilience to Disasters: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis of Water Service Disruptions," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(1), pages 75-112.
  9. Mark Skidmore & Hideki Toya, 2002. "Do Natural Disasters Promote Long-Run Growth?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 40(4), pages 664-687, October.
  10. Henriet, Fanny & Hallegatte, St├ęphane & Tabourier, Lionel, 2012. "Firm-network characteristics and economic robustness to natural disasters," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 150-167.
  11. Matthew E. Kahn, 2005. "The Death Toll from Natural Disasters: The Role of Income, Geography, and Institutions," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 271-284, May.
  12. William D. Nordhaus, 2006. "The Economics of Hurricanes in the United States," NBER Working Papers 12813, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Yasuyuki Sawada & Satoshi Shimizutani, 2008. "How Do People Cope with Natural Disasters? Evidence from the Great Hanshin-Awaji (Kobe) Earthquake in 1995," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(2-3), pages 463-488, 03.
  14. Yasuyuki Sawada & Satoshi Shimizutani, 2007. "Consumption insurance against natural disasters: evidence from the Great Hanshin-Awaji (Kobe) earthquake," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(4), pages 303-306.
  15. Paolo Angelini & Andrea Generale, 2008. "On the Evolution of Firm Size Distributions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 426-38, March.
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