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Division of Labor and the Rise of Cities: Evidence from U.S. Industrialization, 1850-1880

  • Sukkoo Kim
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    Industrial revolution in the United States first took hold in rural New England as factories arose and grew in a handful of industries such as textiles and shoes. However, as factory scale economies rose and factory production techniques were adopted by an ever growing number of industries, industrialization became concentrated in cities throughout the Northeastern region which came to be known as the manufacturing belt. While it is extremely difficult to rule out other types of agglomeration economies such as spillovers, this paper suggests that these geographic developments associated with industrial revolution in the U.S. are most consistent with explanations based on division of labor, job search and matching costs.

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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w12246.pdf
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    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12246.

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    Date of creation: May 2006
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    Publication status: published as Sukkoo Kim, 2006. "Division of labor and the rise of cities: evidence from US industrialization, 1850--1880," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(4), pages 469-491, August.
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12246
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    24. Sukkoo Kim, 2005. "Industrialization and Urbanization: Did the Steam Engine Contribute to the Growth of Cities in the United States?," NBER Working Papers 11206, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    25. Boyan Jovanovic & Rafael Rob, 1989. "The Growth and Diffusion of Knowledge," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(4), pages 569-582.
    26. Berliant, Marcus & Wang, Ping, 1993. "Endogenous formation of a city without agglomerative externalities or market imperfections : Marketplaces in a regional economy," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 121-144, March.
    27. Enrico Moretti, 2003. "Human Capital Externalities in Cities," NBER Working Papers 9641, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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