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Rosenberg's "Learning by Using" and Technology Diffusion

  • MUKOYAMA, Toshihiko

This paper formulates Rosenberg's (1982) "learning by using" as a stochastic process. The producer of machines learns from the experience of users. Due to this learning, the quality of machines improves over time. It turns out that the process of this improvement approximately takes an exponential form. This improvement process, combined with the growth of demand due to the improvement, can produce an S-shape diffusion curve of machines. Strong demand and advancement of communication technology increase the diffusion speed. The distributional property of the stochastic process and the implications for inequality across machine users are also explored.

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Paper provided by Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 21-2005.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mtl:montec:21-2005
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  1. Georg Götz, 1999. "Monopolistic Competition and the Diffusion of New Technology," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 30(4), pages 679-693, Winter.
  2. Young, Alwyn, 1993. "Invention and Bounded Learning by Doing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 443-72, June.
  3. Young, Alwyn, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(2), pages 369-405, May.
  4. Beckmann, Martin J., 1977. "Management production functions and the theory of the firm," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 1-18, February.
  5. Chari, V V & Hopenhayn, Hugo, 1991. "Vintage Human Capital, Growth, and the Diffusion of New Technology," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(6), pages 1142-65, December.
  6. Bronwyn H. Hall & Beethika Khan, 2003. "Adoption of New Technology," NBER Working Papers 9730, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Christine Macleod, 1992. "Strategies for innovation: the diffusion of new technology in nineteenth-century British industry," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 45(2), pages 285-307, 05.
  8. Alwyn Young, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," NBER Working Papers 3577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Jovanovic, Boyan & Lach, Saul, 1989. "Entry, Exit, and Diffusion with Learning by Doing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 690-99, September.
  10. Toshihiko Mukoyama, 2004. "Diffusion and Innovation of New Technologies under Skill Heterogeneity," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(4), pages 451-479, December.
  11. Stephen L. Parente, 2000. "Learning-by-Using and the Switch to Better Machines," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 3(4), pages 675-703, October.
  12. Geroski, Paul A, 1999. "Models of Technology Diffusion," CEPR Discussion Papers 2146, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Kremer, Michael, 1993. "The O-Ring Theory of Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(3), pages 551-75, August.
  14. Sherwin Rosen, 1982. "Authority, Control, and the Distribution of Earnings," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(2), pages 311-323, Autumn.
  15. Griliches, Zvi & Regev, Haim, 1995. "Firm productivity in Israeli industry 1979-1988," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 175-203, January.
  16. Parente Stephen L., 1994. "Technology Adoption, Learning-by-Doing, and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 346-369, August.
  17. Bahk, Byong-Hong & Gort, Michael, 1993. "Decomposing Learning by Doing in New Plants," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 561-83, August.
  18. Paul S. Adler & Kim B. Clark, 1991. "Behind the Learning Curve: A Sketch of the Learning Process," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 37(3), pages 267-281, March.
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