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Is Infrastructure Productive? Evaluating the effects of specific infrastructure projects on firm productivity within New Zealand

  • Jason Timmins

    ()

    (Department of Labour)

The paper investigates the feasibility of using a variant of the spatial equilibrium model to estimate the productivity effects of a specific infrastructure project in New Zealand. Policy makers are interested in the marginal effects of infrastructure investment on productivity and an evaluation of such effects would provide a useful check on the appropriateness and adequacy of current decision rules and institutions. To date, there appear to be no examples of using a spatial equilibrium model to estimate the productivity effects of a specific infrastructure project. However, the analysis in this paper suggests that such an approach is feasible. There is a range of data and estimation issues that needs to be addressed in the use of a spatial equilibrium model for this purpose, but we find that a reasonably useful range of data is available in New Zealand. The next step in determining feasibility is to select a particular infrastructure project, and to develop an empirical model based on available data.

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Paper provided by Motu Economic and Public Policy Research in its series Working Papers with number 05_14.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mtu:wpaper:05_14
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  1. Roback, Jennifer, 1982. "Wages, Rents, and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1257-78, December.
  2. Angel de la Fuente, 2010. "Infrastructures and productivity: an updated survey," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 831.10, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  3. David Aschauer, 1988. "Is public expenditure productive?," Staff Memoranda 88-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  4. Garcia-Mila, Teresa & McGuire, Therese J & Porter, Robert H, 1996. "The Effect of Public Capital in State-Level Production Functions Reconsidered," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(1), pages 177-80, February.
  5. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko & Raven E. Saks, 2005. "Urban Growth and Housing Supply," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2062, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  6. Haughwout, Andrew F., 2002. "Public infrastructure investments, productivity and welfare in fixed geographic areas," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 405-428, March.
  7. John Fernald, 1997. "Roads to prosperity? assessing the link between public capital and productivity," International Finance Discussion Papers 592, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Jeremy B. Rudd, 2000. "Assessing the productivity of public capital with a locational equilibrium model," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2000-23, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  9. Stephen Gibbons & Stephen Machin, 2004. "Valuing rail access using transport innovations," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19989, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  10. Holtz-Eakin, Douglas, 1994. "Public-Sector Capital and the Productivity Puzzle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(1), pages 12-21, February.
  11. Gramlich, Edward M, 1994. "Infrastructure Investment: A Review Essay," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(3), pages 1176-96, September.
  12. Randall W. Eberts, 1990. "Cross-sectional analysis of public infrastructure and regional productivity growth," Working Paper 9004, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  13. Alicia H. Munnell, 1992. "Policy Watch: Infrastructure Investment and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(4), pages 189-198, Fall.
  14. Haughwout, Andrew F., 1998. "Aggregate Production Functions, Interregional Equilibrium, and the Measurement of Infrastructure Productivity," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 216-227, September.
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