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Internal Increasing Returns to Scale and Economic Growth

  • John A. List
  • Haiwen Zhou

This study develops a model of endogenous growth based on increasing returns due to firms' technology choices. Particular attention is paid to the implications of these choices, combined with the substitution of capital for labor, on economic growth in a general equilibrium model in which the R&D sector produces machines to be used for the sector producing final goods. We show that incorporating oligopolistic competition in the sector producing finals goods into a general equilibrium model with endogenous technology choice is tractable, and we explore the equilibrium path analytically. The model illustrates a novel manner in which sustained per capita growth of consumption can be achieved?through continuous adoption of new technologies featuring the substitution between capital and labor. Further insights of the model are that during the growth process, the size of firms producing final goods increases over time, the real interest rate is constant, and the real wage rate increases over time.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/t0336.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Technical Working Papers with number 0336.

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Date of creation: Mar 2007
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberte:0336
Note: EFG TWP
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  1. Bencivenga Valerie R. & Smith Bruce D. & Starr Ross M., 1995. "Transactions Costs, Technological Choice, and Endogenous Growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 153-177, October.
  2. Romer, Paul M, 1986. "Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-37, October.
  3. De Long, J Bradford & Summers, Lawrence H, 1991. "Equipment Investment and Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(2), pages 445-502, May.
  4. Paul Romer, 1989. "Endogenous Technological Change," NBER Working Papers 3210, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Galí, Jordi & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 1994. "Endogenous Growth and Poverty Traps in a Cournotian Model," CEPR Discussion Papers 1052, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Boltho, Andrea & Toniolo, Gianni, 1999. "The Assessment: The Twentieth Century--Achievements, Failures, Lessons," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(4), pages 1-17, Winter.
  7. Jones, Charles I., 2005. "Growth and Ideas," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 16, pages 1063-1111 Elsevier.
  8. Jeremy Greenwood & Ananth Seshadri, 2002. "Technological Progress and Economic Transformation," Economie d'Avant Garde Research Reports 3, Economie d'Avant Garde.
  9. Rebelo, Sergio, 1991. "Long-Run Policy Analysis and Long-Run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 500-521, June.
  10. De Long, J. Bradford & Summers, Lawrence H., 1993. "How strongly do developing economies benefit from equipment investment?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 395-415, December.
  11. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  12. Parente Stephen L., 1994. "Technology Adoption, Learning-by-Doing, and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 346-369, August.
  13. Young, Allyn A., 1928. "Increasing Returns and Economic Progress," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 38, pages 527-542.
  14. Jovanovic, B. & Nyarko, Y., 1996. "Learning by Doing and the Choice of Technology," Working Papers 96-25, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  15. King, Robert G & Rebelo, Sergio T, 1993. "Transitional Dynamics and Economic Growth in the Neoclassical Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 908-31, September.
  16. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 2005. "Growth with Quality-Improving Innovations: An Integrated Framework," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 2, pages 67-110 Elsevier.
  17. Young, Alwyn, 1995. "The Tyranny of Numbers: Confronting the Statistical Realities of the East Asian Growth Experience," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 641-80, August.
  18. Jones, Charles I., 1994. "Economic growth and the relative price of capital," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 359-382, December.
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