Portage and path dependence
The authors examine portage sites in the U.S. South, Mid-Atlantic, and Midwest, including those on the fall line, a geomorphological feature in the southeastern U.S. marking the final rapids on rivers before the ocean. Historically, waterborne transport of goods required portage around the falls at these points, while some falls provided water power during early industrialization. These factors attracted commerce and manufacturing. Although these original advantages have long since been made obsolete, the authors document the continuing importance of these portage sites over time. They interpret these results as path dependence and contrast explanations based on sunk costs interacting with decreasing versus increasing returns to scale.
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References listed on IDEAS
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- Esteban Rossi-Hansberg & Mark L. J. Wright, 2007.
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- Thomas J. Holmes & Sanghoon Lee, 2012. "Economies of Density versus Natural Advantage: Crop Choice on the Back Forty," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 1-19, February.
- Thomas J. Holmes & Sanghoon Lee, 2009. "Economies of Density versus Natural Advantage: Crop Choice on the Back Forty," NBER Working Papers 14704, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Thomas J. Holmes & Sanghoon Lee, 2009. "Economies of density versus natural advantage: crop choice on the back forty," Working Papers 668, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Bester, C. Alan & Conley, Timothy G. & Hansen, Christian B., 2011. "Inference with dependent data using cluster covariance estimators," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 165(2), pages 137-151.
- Conley, T. G., 1999. "GMM estimation with cross sectional dependence," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 1-45, September. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
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