IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper

The "Out of Africa" Hypothesis, Human Genetic Diversity, and Comparative Economic Development

  • Ashraf, Quamrul

    ()

    (Williams College)

  • Galor, Oded

    ()

    (Brown University)

This research argues that deep-rooted factors, determined tens of thousands of years ago, had a significant effect on the course of economic development from the dawn of human civilization to the contemporary era. It advances and empirically establishes the hypothesis that in the course of the exodus of Homo sapiens out of Africa, variation in migratory distance from the cradle of humankind to various settlements across the globe affected genetic diversity and has had a direct long-lasting effect on the pattern of comparative economic development that could not be captured by contemporary geographical, institutional, and cultural factors. In particular, the level of genetic diversity within a society is found to have a hump-shaped effect on development outcomes in the pre-colonial era, reflecting the trade-off between the beneficial and the detrimental effects of diversity on productivity. Moreover, the level of genetic diversity in each country today (i.e., genetic diversity and genetic distance among and between its ancestral populations) has a similar non-monotonic effect on the contemporary levels of income per capita. While the intermediate level of genetic diversity prevalent among the Asian and European populations has been conducive for development, the high degree of diversity among African populations and the low degree of diversity among Native American populations have been a detrimental force in the development of these regions. Further, the optimal level of diversity has increased in the process of industrialization, as the beneficial forces associated with greater diversity have intensified in an environment characterized by more rapid technological progress.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp6330.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6330.

as
in new window

Length: 100 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2012
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: American Economic Review, 2013, 103 (1), 1-46
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6330
Contact details of provider: Postal:
IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany

Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page: http://www.iza.org

Order Information: Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Email:


References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Pagan, Adrian, 1984. "Econometric Issues in the Analysis of Regressions with Generated Regressors," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 25(1), pages 221-47, February.
  2. Ottaviano, Gianmarco & Peri, Giovanni, 2004. "Cities and Cultures," CEPR Discussion Papers 4438, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Oded Galor & Andrew Mountford, 2006. "Trade and the Great Divergence: The Family Connection," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 299-303, May.
  4. Wacziarg, Romain & Alesina, Alberto & Devleeschauwer, Arnaud & Easterly, William & Kurlat, Sergio, 2002. "Fractionalization," Research Papers 1744, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  5. Guiso, Luigi & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2005. "Cultural Biases in Economic Exchange," CEPR Discussion Papers 4837, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Quamrul Ashraf & Oded Galor, 2008. "Dynamics and Stagnation in the Malthusain Epoch: Theory and Evidence," Working Papers 2008-14, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  7. Giuliano, Paola & Spilimbergo, Antonio & Tonon, Giovanni, 2006. "Genetic, Cultural and Geographical Distances," CEPR Discussion Papers 5807, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. R. Haveman & K. Holden & B. Wolfe & P. Smith & K. Wilson, . "The Changing Economic Status of U.S. Disabled Men: Trends and Their Determinants, 1982–1991," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1190-99, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  9. Sara LaLumia & James Sallee, 2013. "The value of honesty: empirical estimates from the case of the missing children," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 192-224, April.
  10. Edward P. Lazear, 1999. "Culture and Language," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(S6), pages S95-S126, December.
  11. Dani Rodrik & Arvind Subramanian & Francesco Trebbi, 2002. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," NBER Working Papers 9305, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Edward L. Glaeser & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Do Institutions Cause Growth?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(3), pages 271-303, 09.
  13. Dalgaard, Carl-Johan & Strulik, Holger, 2010. "The Physiological Foundations of the Wealth of Nations," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Hannover 2010 3, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
  14. Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2006. "The Diffusion of Development," NBER Working Papers 12153, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Quamrul Ashraf & Oded Galor & Omer Ozak, 2009. "Isolation and Development," Department of Economics Working Papers 2009-04, Department of Economics, Williams College.
  16. Keller, Wolfgang, 2001. "Knowledge Spillovers at the World's Technology Frontier," CEPR Discussion Papers 2815, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Stelios Michalopoulos, 2011. "The Origins of Technolinguistic Diversity," Economics Working Papers 0095, Institute for Advanced Study, School of Social Science.
  18. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1999. "The Quality of Government," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 222-79, April.
  19. Luigi Guiso & Paola Sapienza & Luigi Zingales, 2002. "People's Opium? Religion and Economic Attitudes," NBER Working Papers 9237, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. La Porta, Rafael, et al, 1997. "Trust in Large Organizations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 333-38, May.
  21. Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, 2001. "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262232197.
  22. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum, 2002. "Technology, Geography, and Trade," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(5), pages 1741-1779, September.
  23. Montalvo, Jose G. & Reynal-Querol, Marta, 2005. "Ethnic diversity and economic development," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 293-323, April.
  24. Louis Putterman, 2006. "Agriculture, Diffusion,and Development: Ripple Effects of the Neolithic Revolutions," Working Papers 2006-19, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  25. Jonathan Temple & Paul A. Johnson, 1998. "Social Capability and Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(3), pages 965-990.
  26. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
  27. Jacob L. Weisdorf, 2005. "From Foraging To Farming: Explaining The Neolithic Revolution," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(4), pages 561-586, 09.
  28. Oded_Galor, 2004. "From Stagnation to Growth:Unified Growth Theory," Working Papers 2004-15, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  29. Olsson, Ola & Hibbs, Douglas Jr., 2005. "Biogeography and long-run economic development," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(4), pages 909-938, May.
  30. Bockstette, Valerie & Chanda, Areendam & Putterman, Louis, 2002. "States and Markets: The Advantage of an Early Start," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 7(4), pages 347-69, December.
  31. Masters, William A & McMillan, Margaret S, 2001. "Climate and Scale in Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 167-86, September.
  32. Murphy, Kevin M & Topel, Robert H, 2002. "Estimation and Inference in Two-Step Econometric Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(1), pages 88-97, January.
  33. Krugman, Paul, 1991. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 483-99, June.
  34. Areendam Chanda & Louis Putterman, 2004. "Early Starts, Reversals and Catchup in The Process of Economic Development," Working Papers 2004-04, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  35. Wolfgang Keller, 2000. "Geographic Localization of International Technology Diffusion," NBER Working Papers 7509, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  36. Desmet, Klaus & Le Breton, Michel & Ortuño-Ortín, Ignacio & Weber, Shlomo, 2006. "Nation Formation and Genetic Diversity," CEPR Discussion Papers 5918, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  37. William T. Alpert & Stephen A. Woodbury, 2000. "Introduction," Book chapters authored by Upjohn Institute researchers, in: William T. Alpert & Stephen A. Woodbury (ed.), Employee Benefits and Labor Markets in Canada and the United States, chapter 1, pages 1-12 W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  38. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  39. Klaus Desmet & Michel Le Breton & Ignacio Ortuno-Ortin & Shlomo Weber, 2009. "The Stability and Breakup of Nations: A Quantitative Analysis," Working Papers VIVES Research Centre for Regional Economics 10, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business, VIVES Research Centre for Regional Economics.
  40. Gylfason, Thorvaldur, 2000. "Natural Resources, Education, and Economic Development," CEPR Discussion Papers 2594, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  41. N/A, 2000. "The world economy," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 172(1), pages 3-3, April.
  42. Graziella Bertocchi & Fabio Canova, 1996. "Did colonization matter for growth? An empirical exploration into the historical causes of Africa's underdevelopment," Economics Working Papers 202, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  43. Tabellini, Guido, 2007. "Culture and Institutions," CEPR Discussion Papers 6589, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  44. Easterly, W & Levine, R, 1996. "Africa's Growth Tragedy : Policies and Ethnic Divisions," Papers 536, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  45. N/A, 2000. "The world economy," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 173(1), pages 3-3, July.
  46. Edward L. Glaeser & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "Legal Origins," NBER Working Papers 8272, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  47. Matthias Doepke, 2004. "Accounting for Fertility Decline During the Transition to Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(3), pages 347-383, 09.
  48. Conley, T. G., 1999. "GMM estimation with cross sectional dependence," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 1-45, September.
  49. Oded Galor & Omer Moav & Dietrich Vollrath, 2005. "Land Inequality and the Emergence of Human Capital Promoting Institutions," Development and Comp Systems 0502018, EconWPA.
  50. Nils-Petter Lagerlöf, 2003. "From Malthus to Modern Growth: Can Epidemics Explain the Three Regimes?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(2), pages 755-777, 05.
  51. Gradstein, Mark & Justman, Moshe, 2001. "Education, Social Cohesion and Economic Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 2773, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  52. Galor, Oded & Moav, Omer & Vollrath, Dietrich, 2008. "Inequality in Land Ownership, the Emergence of Human Capital Promoting Institutions and the Great Divergence," CEPR Discussion Papers 6751, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  53. Hong, Lu & Page, Scott E., 2001. "Problem Solving by Heterogeneous Agents," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 97(1), pages 123-163, March.
  54. N/A, 2000. "The world economy," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 174(1), pages 3-3, October.
  55. N/A, 2000. "The World Economy," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 173(1), pages 43-65, July.
  56. John Luke Gallup & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew Mellinger, 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," CID Working Papers 1, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
  57. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1997. "Does Social Capital Have an Economic Payoff? A Cross-Country Investigation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1251-1288.
  58. John Luke Gallup & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew D. Mellinger, 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," International Regional Science Review, , vol. 22(2), pages 179-232, August.
  59. Abramovitz, Moses, 1986. "Catching Up, Forging Ahead, and Falling Behind," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 46(02), pages 385-406, June.
  60. Galor, Oded, 2009. "2008 Lawrence R. Klein Lecture -- Comparative Economic Development: Insights from Unified Growth Theory," CEPR Discussion Papers 7519, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  61. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
  62. Diego A. Comin & William Easterly & Erick Gong, 2008. "Was the Wealth of Nations Determined in 1000 B.C.?," Harvard Business School Working Papers 09-052, Harvard Business School.
  63. Zak, Paul J & Knack, Stephen, 2001. "Trust and Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(470), pages 295-321, April.
  64. McCleary, Rachel & Barro, Robert, 2003. "Religion and Economic Growth across Countries," Scholarly Articles 3708464, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  65. Greif, Avner, 1993. "Contract Enforceability and Economic Institutions in Early Trade: the Maghribi Traders' Coalition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 525-48, June.
  66. Guido Tabellini, 2008. "Presidential Address Institutions and Culture," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(2-3), pages 255-294, 04-05.
  67. Michael Kremer, 1993. "Population Growth and Technological Change: One Million B.C. to 1990," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 681-716.
  68. Gallup, J.L. & Sachs, J.D. & Mullinger, A., 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," Papers 1, Chicago - Graduate School of Business.
  69. Quamrul Ashraf & Oded Galor, 2011. "Dynamics and Stagnation in the Malthusian Epoch," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 2003-41, August.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6330. 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: (Mark Fallak)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

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

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.