IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/fip/fedmwp/606.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The transition to a new economy after the Second Industrial Revolution

Author

Listed:
  • Andrew Atkeson
  • Patrick J. Kehoe

Abstract

During the Second Industrial Revolution, 1860?1900, many new technologies, including electricity, were invented. These inventions launched a transition to a new economy, a period of about 70 years of ongoing, rapid technical change. After this revolution began, however, several decades passed before measured productivity growth increased. This delay is paradoxical from the point of view of the standard growth model. Historians hypothesize that this delay was due to the slow diffusion of new technologies among manufacturing plants together with the ongoing learning in plants after the new technologies had been adopted. The slow diffusion is thought to be due to manufacturers? reluctance to abandon their accumulated expertise with old technologies, which were embodied in the design of existing plants. Motivated by these hypotheses, we build a quantitative model of technology diffusion which we use to study this transition to a new economy. We show that it implies both slow diffusion and a delay in growth similar to that in the data.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2001. "The transition to a new economy after the Second Industrial Revolution," Working Papers 606, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmwp:606
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.minneapolisfed.org/research/common/pub_detail.cfm?pb_autonum_id=826
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: http://www.minneapolisfed.org/research/wp/wp606.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Paul A. David & Gavin Wright, "undated". "General Purpose Technologies and Surges in Productivity: Historical Reflections on the Future of the ICT Revolution," Working Papers 99026, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
    2. Philippe Aghion & Olivier Jean Blanchard, 1994. "On the Speed of Transition in Central Europe," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1994, Volume 9, pages 283-330, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Robert J. Gordon, 2000. "Does the "New Economy" Measure Up to the Great Inventions of the Past?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 49-74, Fall.
    4. Atkenson, Andrew & Khan, Aubhik & Ohanian, Lee, 1996. "Are data on industry evolution and gross job turnover relevant for macroeconomics?," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 215-239, June.
    5. Jeffrey Campbell, 1998. "Entry, Exit, Embodied Technology, and Business Cycles," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(2), pages 371-408, April.
    6. Argote, L. & Epple, D., 1990. "Learning Curves In Manufacturing," GSIA Working Papers 89-90-02, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
    7. Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 1993. "Industry evolution and transition: the role of information capital," Staff Report 162, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    8. Atack, Jeremy & Bateman, Fred & Weiss, Thomas, 1980. "The Regional Diffusion and Adoption of the Steam Engine in American Manufacturing," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 40(2), pages 281-308, June.
    9. Paul A. David & Gavin Wright, "undated". "General Purpose Technologies and Surges in Productivity: Historical Reflections on the Future of the ICT Revolution," Working Papers 99026, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
    10. Elhanan Helpman & Manuel Trajtenberg, 1996. "Diffusion of General Purpose Technologies," NBER Working Papers 5773, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Robert E. Lucas Jr., 1978. "On the Size Distribution of Business Firms," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 9(2), pages 508-523, Autumn.
    12. Hopenhayn, Hugo & Rogerson, Richard, 1993. "Job Turnover and Policy Evaluation: A General Equilibrium Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(5), pages 915-938, October.
    13. Alfred D. Chandler, 1992. "Organizational Capabilities and the Economic History of the Industrial Enterprise," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 79-100, Summer.
    14. J. Bradford Jensen & Robert H. McGuckin & Kevin J. Stiroh, 2001. "The Impact Of Vintage And Survival On Productivity: Evidence From Cohorts Of U.S. Manufacturing Plants," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(2), pages 323-332, May.
    15. Brixiova, Zuzana & Kiyotaki, Nobuhiro, 1997. "Private sector development in transition economies," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 241-279, June.
    16. Jovanovic, Boyan & MacDonald, Glenn M, 1994. "Competitive Diffusion," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(1), pages 24-52, February.
    17. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932.
    18. Castanheira, Micael & Roland, Gerard, 2000. "The Optimal Speed of Transition: A General Equilibrium Analysis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 41(1), pages 219-239, February.
    19. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1982. "Selection and the Evolution of Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(3), pages 649-670, May.
    20. David, Paul A, 1990. "The Dynamo and the Computer: An Historical Perspective on the Modern Productivity Paradox," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 355-361, May.
    21. Andreas Hornstein & Per Krusell, 1996. "Can Technology Improvements Cause Productivity Slowdowns?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1996, Volume 11, pages 209-276, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    22. Bahk, Byong-Hong & Gort, Michael, 1993. "Decomposing Learning by Doing in New Plants," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 561-583, August.
    23. Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin M. Hitt, 2000. "Beyond Computation: Information Technology, Organizational Transformation and Business Performance," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 23-48, Fall.
    24. Chari, V V & Hopenhayn, Hugo, 1991. "Vintage Human Capital, Growth, and the Diffusion of New Technology," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(6), pages 1142-1165, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2007. "Modeling the Transition to a New Economy: Lessons from Two Technological Revolutions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 64-88, March.
    2. repec:eee:labchp:v:3:y:1999:i:pb:p:2711-2805 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Douglas W Dwyer, 1995. "Technology Locks, Creative Destruction And Non-Convergence In Productivity Levels," Working Papers 95-6, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    4. Lucia Foster & John C. Haltiwanger & C. J. Krizan, 2001. "Aggregate Productivity Growth: Lessons from Microeconomic Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: New Developments in Productivity Analysis, pages 303-372, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Dosi, Giovanni & Nelson, Richard R., 2010. "Technical Change and Industrial Dynamics as Evolutionary Processes," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, in: Bronwyn H. Hall & Nathan Rosenberg (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 0, pages 51-127, Elsevier.
    6. Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2005. "Modeling and Measuring Organization Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(5), pages 1026-1053, October.
    7. Andrew Atkeson & Patrick Kehoe, 1997. "Industry Evolution and Transition: A Neoclassical Benchmark," NBER Working Papers 6005, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Ahn, Sanghoon, 2003. "Technology Upgrading with Learning Cost," CEI Working Paper Series 2003-21, Center for Economic Institutions, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
    9. Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 1995. "Industry evolution and transition: measuring investment in organization," Staff Report 201, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    10. Jovanovic, Boyan & Rousseau, Peter L., 2005. "General Purpose Technologies," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 18, pages 1181-1224, Elsevier.
    11. Catherine Armington & Zoltan Acs, 2000. "Differences in Job Growth and Persistence in Services and Manufacturing," Working Papers 00-04, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    12. Jeffrey R. Campbell & Jonas D. M. Fisher, 1998. "Organizational flexibility and employment dynamics at young and old plants," Working Paper Series WP-98-24, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    13. Susanto Basu & John G. Fernald & Nicholas Oulton & Sylaja Srinivasan, 2004. "The Case of the Missing Productivity Growth, or Does Information Technology Explain Why Productivity Accelerated in the United States but Not in the United Kingdom?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2003, Volume 18, pages 9-82, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Thomas F. Cooley & Vincenzo Quadrini, 2001. "Financial Markets and Firm Dynamics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1286-1310, December.
    15. Susanto Basu & John G. Fernald & Nicholas Oulton & Sylaja Srinivasan, 2003. "The Case of the Missing Productivity Growth: Or, Does Information Technology Explain why Productivity Accelerated in the US but not the UK?," NBER Working Papers 10010, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. repec:pri:cepsud:113krusell is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Les T. Oxley & Kenneth I. Carlaw, 2004. "ICT Diffusion and Economic Growth in New Zealand," Econometric Society 2004 Australasian Meetings 167, Econometric Society.
    18. Thompson, Peter, 2010. "Learning by Doing," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, in: Bronwyn H. Hall & Nathan Rosenberg (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 0, pages 429-476, Elsevier.
    19. Hornstein, Andreas & Krusell, Per & Violante, Giovanni L., 2005. "The Effects of Technical Change on Labor Market Inequalities," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 20, pages 1275-1370, Elsevier.
    20. Kiley, Michael T., 2001. "Computers and growth with frictions: aggregate and disaggregate evidence," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 171-215, December.
    21. Edquist, Harald & Henrekson, Magnus, 2004. "Technological Breakthroughs and Productivity Growth," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 0562, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 23 Jan 2006.
    22. Adam Jaffe & Nathan Chappell, 2018. "Worker flows, entry, and productivity in New Zealand’s construction industry," Working Papers 18_02, Motu Economic and Public Policy Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Technology - Economic aspects;

    JEL classification:

    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedmwp:606. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/cfrbmus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Jannelle Ruswick The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Jannelle Ruswick to update the entry or send us the correct address (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/cfrbmus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.