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Agglomeration Elasticities in New Zealand

  • David C. Maré

    ()

    (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research)

  • Daniel J. Graham

    ()

    (Centre for Transport Studies, Imperial College, London)

This paper analyses the relationship between firms’ multi-factor productivity and the effective employment density of the areas where they operate. Quantifying these agglomeration elasticities is of central importance in the evaluation of the wider economic benefits of transport investments. We estimate agglomeration elasticities using the Statistics New Zealand prototype Longitudinal Business Database: a firm-level panel covering the period 1999 to 2006. We estimate that an area with 10 percent higher effective density has firms with productivity that is 0.69 percent higher, once we control for the industry specific production functions and sorting of more productive firms across industries and locations. We present separate estimates of agglomeration elasticities for specific industries and regions, and examine the interaction of agglomeration with capital, labour, and other inputs.

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Paper provided by Motu Economic and Public Policy Research in its series Working Papers with number 09_06.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mtu:wpaper:09_06
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  1. Ciccone, Antonio & Hall, Robert E, 1996. "Productivity and the Density of Economic Activity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 54-70, March.
  2. Giles Duranton & Diego Puga, 2003. "Micro-Foundations of Urban Agglomeration Economies," NBER Working Papers 9931, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Ackerberg, Daniel & Caves, Kevin & Frazer, Garth, 2006. "Structural identification of production functions," MPRA Paper 38349, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2003. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 317-341.
  5. David C. Maré, 2008. "Labour Productivity in Auckland Firms," Working Papers 08_12, Motu Economic and Public Policy Research.
  6. G. Steven Olley & Ariel Pakes, 1992. "The Dynamics of Productivity in the Telecommunications Equipment Industry," NBER Working Papers 3977, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Williamson, John & Paling, Richard & Staheli, Ramon & Waite, David, 2008. "Assessing Agglomeration Impacts in Auckland: Phase 2," Occasional Papers 08/6, Ministry of Economic Development, New Zealand.
  8. Anthony J. Venables, 2007. "Evaluating Urban Transport Improvements: Cost-Benefit Analysis in the Presence of Agglomeration and Income Taxation," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, London School of Economics and University of Bath, vol. 41(2), pages 173-188, May.
  9. Melo, Patricia C. & Graham, Daniel J. & Noland, Robert B., 2009. "A meta-analysis of estimates of urban agglomeration economies," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 332-342, May.
  10. Randall W. Eberts & Daniel P. McMillen, 1999. "Agglomeration Economies and Urban Public Infrastructure," Book chapters authored by Upjohn Institute researchers, in: Paul Cheshire & Edwin S. Mills (ed.), handbook or Regional and Urban Economics, volume 3, pages 1455-1495 W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  11. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2003. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(2), pages 317-341, 04.
  12. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2004. "Evidence on the nature and sources of agglomeration economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 49, pages 2119-2171 Elsevier.
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