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Production Functions: The Search for Identification

  • Zvi Griliches
  • Jacques Mairesse

Some aspects of the econometric estimation of production functions are discussed, focussing primarily on the issue of simultaneity and reviewing the stream of criticisms of Douglas' work and the response to it. We look in particular at the work that uses panel data on micro data for plants or firms and at some more recent multi-equation extensions of it. We find that researchers, in trying to evade the simultaneity problem, have shifted to the use of thinner and thinner slices of data, exacerbating thereby other problems and misspecifications. We describe the need for better data, especially on product prices at the individual observation level and on relevant cost and demand shifters, and for better behavioral theories which would encompass the large amount of heterogeneity observed at the micro level.

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Paper provided by Harvard - Institute of Economic Research in its series Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers with number 1719.

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Date of creation: 1995
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Handle: RePEc:fth:harver:1719
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  1. ZELLNER, Arnold & KMENTA, Jan & DREZE, Jacques H., . "Specification and estimation of Cobb-Douglas production function models," CORE Discussion Papers RP 12, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Keane, Michael P & Runkle, David E, 1992. "On the Estimation of Panel-Data Models with Serial Correlation When Instruments Are Not Strictly Exogenous," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 10(1), pages 1-9, January.
  3. Chamberlain, Gary, 1982. "Multivariate regression models for panel data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 5-46, January.
  4. Hellerstein, J-K & Neumark, D, 1995. "Sex, Wages, and Productivity : an Empirical Analysis of Israeli, Firm-Level Data," Papers 9501, Michigan State - Econometrics and Economic Theory.
  5. J.D. Angrist & Guido W. Imbens & D.B. Rubin, 1993. "Identification of Causal Effects Using Instrumental Variables," NBER Technical Working Papers 0136, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Griliches, Zvi & Hausman, Jerry A., 1986. "Errors in variables in panel data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 93-118, February.
  7. Christensen, Laurits R & Jorgenson, Dale W & Lau, Lawrence J, 1973. "Transcendental Logarithmic Production Frontiers," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 55(1), pages 28-45, February.
  8. George S Olley & Ariel Pakes, 1992. "The Dynamics Of Productivity In The Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Working Papers 92-2, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  9. Robert E. Hall, 1986. "The Relation Between Price and Marginal Cost in U.S. Industry," NBER Working Papers 1785, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Klette, T.J., 1992. "The Inconsistency of Common Scale Estimators when Output Prices are unobserved and Endogenous," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1586, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  11. Eden, Benjamin & Griliches, Zvi, 1993. "Productivity, Market Power, and Capacity Utilization When Spot Markets Are Complete," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 219-23, May.
  12. Angrist, Joshua D, 1990. "Lifetime Earnings and the Vietnam Era Draft Lottery: Evidence from Social Security Administrative Records," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 313-36, June.
  13. Ariél Pakes & Zvi Griliches, 1984. "Estimating Distributed Lags in Short Panels with an Application to the Specification of Depreciation Patterns and Capital Stock Constructs," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 51(2), pages 243-262.
  14. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Returns to Research and Development Expenditures in the Private Sector," NBER Chapters, in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 49-81 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Jacques Mairesse & Zvi Griliches, 1988. "Heterogeneity in Panel Data: Are There Stable Production Functions?," NBER Working Papers 2619, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Tor Jakob Klette, 1994. "Estimating Price- Cost Margins and Scale Economies from a Panel of Microdata," Discussion Papers 130, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
  17. Ariel Pakes & Steven Olley, 1994. "A Limit Theorem for a Smooth Class of Semiparametric Estimators," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1066, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  18. Hall, Bronwyn H. & Mairesse, Jacques, 1995. "Exploring the relationship between R&D and productivity in French manufacturing firms," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 263-293, January.
  19. Griliches, Zvi, 1977. "Estimating the Returns to Schooling: Some Econometric Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(1), pages 1-22, January.
  20. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
  21. repec:cor:louvrp:-12 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Zvi Griliches & Jacques Mairesse, 1981. "Productivity and R and D at the Firm Level," NBER Working Papers 0826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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