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Reconciling conflicting evidence on the origins of comparative development: A finite mixture model approach

  • Thomas K.J. McDermott
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    In this paper, I revisit the controversy over the fundamental sources of comparative development. In contrast to much of the previous literature, my focus is on the appropriate specification of the empirical strategy. Using a finite mixture model approach and Monte Carlo simulations, I demonstrate that the standard linear estimation strategy may be mis-specified and as a result is likely to obscure the true effects of the variables used to explain cross-country income differences. My findings could potentially reconcile apparently conflicting results from the existing literature on the role of geography and institutions in comparative development.

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    File URL: http://www.lse.ac.uk/GranthamInstitute/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/WP130-Reconciling-conflicting-evidence-on-origins-of-comparative-development.pdf
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    Paper provided by Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment in its series GRI Working Papers with number 130.

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    Date of creation: Aug 2013
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    Handle: RePEc:lsg:lsgwps:wp130
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    1. Conway, Karen Smith & Deb, Partha, 2005. "Is prenatal care really ineffective? Or, is the 'devil' in the distribution?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 489-513, May.
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    8. Cervellati, Matteo & Sunde, Uwe, 2011. "Disease and development: The role of life expectancy reconsidered," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 113(3), pages 269-272.
    9. Danny Quah, 1996. "Twin Peaks: Growth and Convergence in Models of Distribution Dynamics," CEP Discussion Papers dp0280, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    10. Strulik, Holger, 2007. "Geography, Health, and the Pace of Demo-Economic Development," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-361, Leibniz Universit├Ąt Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakult├Ąt.
    11. Carstensen, Kai & Gundlach, Erich, 2006. "The primacy of institutions reconsidered: Direct income effects of malaria prevalence," Munich Reprints in Economics 19929, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    12. Bloom, David E & Canning, David & Sevilla, Jaypee, 2003. " Geography and Poverty Traps," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 355-78, December.
    13. William Easterly & Ross Levine, 2002. "Tropics, Germs, and Crops: How Endowments Influence Economic Development," NBER Working Papers 9106, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    15. David Y. Albouy, 2012. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(6), pages 3059-76, October.
    16. Danny Quah, 1996. "Twin peaks : growth and convergence in models of distribution dynamics," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 2278, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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