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Second thoughts on development accounting

  • Gundlach, Erich
  • Rudman, Desmond
  • Wößmann, Ludger

The relative roles of factor inputs and productivity are estimated in explaining the level of economic development. For a large sample of countries, it is shown that international differences in factor inputs account for between two thirds and three quarters of international differences in output per worker if alternative identifying productivity assumptions and a quality-adjusted measure of human capital are employed. For a sample of OECD countries, it is found that all differences in output per worker can be attributed to differences in factor inputs, leaving no role for international productivity differences. This result supports the reasoning of a traditional neoclassical growth model.

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Paper provided by University of Munich, Department of Economics in its series Munich Reprints in Economics with number 20436.

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Date of creation: 2002
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Applied Economics 11 34(2002): pp. 1359-1369
Handle: RePEc:lmu:muenar:20436
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  1. Prescott, Edward C, 1998. "Needed: A Theory of Total Factor Productivity," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(3), pages 525-51, August.
  2. Douglas Gollin, 2002. "Getting Income Shares Right," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(2), pages 458-474, April.
  3. Mankiw, N Gregory & Romer, David & Weil, David N, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 407-37, May.
  4. Barro, Robert J, 1999. " Notes on Growth Accounting," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 119-37, June.
  5. Maddison, Angus, 1987. "Growth and Slowdown in Advanced Capitalist Economies: Techniques of Quantitative Assessment," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 25(2), pages 649-98, June.
  6. Eric A. Hanushek & Dongwook Kim, 1995. "Schooling, Labor Force Quality, and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 5399, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Nelson, Richard R, 1973. "Recent Exercises in Growth Accounting: New Understanding or Dead End?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(3), pages 462-68, June.
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