Why the rich should like R&D less
It is well known that research and development (R&D) is an important engine for economic growth. Also, initial wealth inequality and subsequent economic growth are well known to be related. This paper links inequality and R&D-driven growth. It shows that in a class of economies where R&D is the main engine for growth, different wealth groups differ in their desire for aggregate innovative effort: the richer the individual the lower her ideal aggregate R&D investment. In so far as rich shareholders are able to pursue their common interests in avoiding to invest too much in R&D compared to their ideal level, a pro-labour government able to impose distortionary progressive taxation, by minimizing the difference between the rich and the poor can maximize growth. Such predicted negative relationship between desired R&D and dynastic wealth is robust to any subsidy rate lower than 100%.
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|Date of creation:||Jun 2008|
|Date of revision:||Aug 2008|
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