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Variety and the evolution of refinery processing

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  • Bernard Bourgeois

    (LEPII - Laboratoire d'Economie de la Production et de l'Intégration Internationale - UPMF - Université Pierre Mendès France - Grenoble 2 - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Phuong Nguyen

    (GAEL - Laboratoire d'Economie Appliquée = Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory - UPMF - Université Pierre Mendès France - Grenoble 2 - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Pier Paolo Saviotti

    (GAEL - Laboratoire d'Economie Appliquée = Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory - UPMF - Université Pierre Mendès France - Grenoble 2 - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Michel Trommetter

    (GAEL - Laboratoire d'Economie Appliquée = Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory - UPMF - Université Pierre Mendès France - Grenoble 2 - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

Abstract

Evolutionary theories of economic development stress the role of variety as both a determinant and a result of growth. In this paper we develop a measure of variety, based on Weitzman's maximum likelihood procedure. This measure is based on the distance between products, and indicates the degree of differentiation of a product population. We propose a generic method, which permits to regroup the products with very similar characteristics values before choosing randomly the product models to be used to calculate Weitzman's measure. We apply the variety measure to process characteristics of oil refining. The results obtained for this technology show classic evolutionary specialization patterns that can be understood on the basis of niche theory. Here the changes in variety are related to changes in the range of the services the technology considered can deliver, range which plays a role similar to that of the size of the habitat of a biological species.

Suggested Citation

  • Bernard Bourgeois & Phuong Nguyen & Pier Paolo Saviotti & Michel Trommetter, 2005. "Variety and the evolution of refinery processing," Post-Print halshs-00003937, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:halshs-00003937
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://shs.hal.science/halshs-00003937
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Carolina Castaldi & Roberto Fontana & Alessandro Nuvolari, 2009. "‘Chariots of fire’: the evolution of tank technology, 1915–1945," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 19(4), pages 545-566, August.
    2. Dengsheng Wu & Xiaoli Lu & Jianping Li & Jing Li, 2020. "Does the institutional diversity of editorial boards increase journal quality? The case economics field," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 124(2), pages 1579-1597, August.
    3. Qiuju Zhou & Ronald Rousseau & Liying Yang & Ting Yue & Guoliang Yang, 2012. "A general framework for describing diversity within systems and similarity between systems with applications in informetrics," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 93(3), pages 787-812, December.
    4. Karolina Safarzyńska & Jeroen Bergh, 2010. "Evolutionary models in economics: a survey of methods and building blocks," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 329-373, June.
    5. David W. Meyer & Christopher T. Taylor, 2018. "The Determinants of Plant Exit: the Evolution of the U.S. Refining Industry," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 18(4), pages 429-448, December.
    6. Martin Woerter, 2009. "Industry diversity and its impact on the innovation performance of firms," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 19(5), pages 675-700, October.
    7. Frenken, Koen & Pyka, Andreas & Verspagen, Bart & Windrum, Paul, 2010. "Innovation, qualitative change and economic development--Special issue in honour of Pier-Paolo Saviotti," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 1-4, March.
    8. Witt, Ulrich, 2010. "Symbolic consumption and the social construction of product characteristics," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 17-25, March.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Technological evolution; refinery processes; variety; niche theory; Weitzman measure; progrès technologique; raffinage; pétrole; mesure de Weitzman; variété;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L93 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Air Transportation
    • Q40 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - General

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