IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/17495.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Knowledge Growth and the Allocation of Time

Author

Listed:
  • Robert E. Lucas, Jr.
  • Benjamin Moll

Abstract

We analyze a model economy with many agents, each with a different productivity level. Agents divide their time between two activities: producing goods with the production-related knowledge they already have, and interacting with others in search of new, productivity-increasing ideas. These choices jointly determine the economy's current production level and its rate of learning and real growth. Individuals' time allocation decisions depend on the knowledge distribution because the productivity levels of others determine their own chances of improving their productivities through search. The time allocations of everyone in the economy in turn determine the evolution of its knowledge distribution. We construct the balanced growth path for this economy, thereby obtaining a theory of endogenous growth that captures in a tractable way the social nature of knowledge creation. We also study the allocation chosen by an idealized planner who takes into account and internalizes the external benefits of search, and tax structures that implement an optimal solution. Finally, we provide two examples of alternative learning technologies, as concrete illustrations of other directions that might be pursued.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert E. Lucas, Jr. & Benjamin Moll, 2011. "Knowledge Growth and the Allocation of Time," NBER Working Papers 17495, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17495
    Note: EFG
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w17495.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. König, Michael & Lorenz, Jan & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 2016. "Innovation vs. imitation and the evolution of productivity distributions," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 11(3), September.
    2. Jovanovic, Boyan & Nyarko, Yaw, 1996. "Learning by Doing and the Choice of Technology," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1299-1310, November.
    3. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1991. "Quality Ladders in the Theory of Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(1), pages 43-61.
    4. Jess Benhabib & Alberto Bisin & Shenghao Zhu, 2011. "The Distribution of Wealth and Fiscal Policy in Economies With Finitely Lived Agents," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(1), pages 123-157, January.
    5. Boyan Jovanovic & Rafael Rob, 1989. "The Growth and Diffusion of Knowledge," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(4), pages 569-582.
    6. Fernando E. Alvarez & Francisco J. Buera & Robert E. Lucas, Jr., 2008. "Models of Idea Flows," NBER Working Papers 14135, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Bental, Benjamin & Peled, Dan, 1996. "The Accumulation of Wealth and the Cyclical Generation of New Technologies: A Search Theoretic Approach," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 37(3), pages 687-718, August.
    8. Comin, Diego & Dmitriev, Mikhail & Rossi-Hansberg, Esteban, 2012. "The Spatial Diffusion of Technology," CEPR Discussion Papers 9208, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Xavier Gabaix, 2009. "Power Laws in Economics and Finance," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 255-294, May.
    10. Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), 2005. "Handbook of Economic Growth," Handbook of Economic Growth, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 1, number 1.
    11. Luttmer, Erzo G.J., 2012. "Technology diffusion and growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(2), pages 602-622.
    12. Jesse Perla & Christopher Tonetti, 2014. "Equilibrium Imitation and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 122(1), pages 52-76.
    13. Hause, John C, 1980. "The Fine Structure of Earnings and the On-the-Job Training Hypothesis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 1013-1029, May.
    14. Heckman, James J, 1976. "A Life-Cycle Model of Earnings, Learning, and Consumption," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages 11-44, August.
    15. World Bank, 2008. "Global Economic Prospects 2008 : Technology Diffusion in the Developing World," World Bank Publications - Books, The World Bank Group, number 6335, December.
    16. Yoram Ben-Porath, 1967. "The Production of Human Capital and the Life Cycle of Earnings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 352-352.
    17. Zimmerman, David J, 1992. "Regression toward Mediocrity in Economic Stature," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 409-429, June.
    18. Marimon, Ramon & Scott, Andrew (ed.), 1999. "Computational Methods for the Study of Dynamic Economies," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198294979.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Francisco J. Buera & Ezra Oberfield, 2020. "The Global Diffusion of Ideas," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 88(1), pages 83-114, January.
    2. Jess Benhabib & Jesse Perla & Christopher Tonetti, 2014. "Catch-up and fall-back through innovation and imitation," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 19(1), pages 1-35, March.
    3. Nelson Lind & Natalia Ramondo, 2018. "Innovation, Knowledge Diffusion, and Globalization," NBER Working Papers 25071, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Jesse Perla & Christopher Tonetti, 2014. "Equilibrium Imitation and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 122(1), pages 52-76.
    5. Jess Benhabib & Jesse Perla & Christopher Tonetti, 2021. "Reconciling Models of Diffusion and Innovation: A Theory of the Productivity Distribution and Technology Frontier," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 89(5), pages 2261-2301, September.
    6. Kjetil Storesletten & Bo Zhao & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2019. "Business Cycle during Structural Change: Arthur Lewis' Theory from a Neoclassical Perspective," NBER Working Papers 26181, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. David de la Croix & Matthias Doepke & Joel Mokyr, 2018. "Clans, Guilds, and Markets: Apprenticeship Institutions and Growth in the Preindustrial Economy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 133(1), pages 1-70.
    8. Erzo G.J. Luttmer, 2010. "Models of Growth and Firm Heterogeneity," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 2(1), pages 547-576, September.
    9. Garicano, Luis & Rossi-Hansberg, Esteban, 2012. "Organizing growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(2), pages 623-656.
    10. König, Michael & Song, Zheng & Storesletten, Kjetil & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 2020. "From Imitation to Innovation: Where Is all that Chinese R&D Going?," CEPR Discussion Papers 14966, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    11. Erzo G. J. Luttmer, 2014. "An Assignment Model of Knowledge Diffusion and Income Inequality," Working Papers 715, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    12. Jesse Perla & Christopher Tonetti, 2012. "Endogenous Risk and Growth," 2012 Meeting Papers 479, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    13. Sampson, Thomas, 2016. "Dynamic selection: an idea flows theory of entry, trade and growth," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62623, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    14. Christos Pargianas, 2016. "Endogenous Economic Institutions and Persistent Income Differences among High Income Countries," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 139-159, February.
    15. Duranton, Gilles & Puga, Diego, 2014. "The Growth of Cities," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 5, pages 781-853, Elsevier.
    16. Mengistae, Taye, 1999. "The relative effects of skill formation and job matching on wage growth in Ethiopia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2104, The World Bank.
    17. Acemoglu, Daron & Cao, Dan, 2015. "Innovation by entrants and incumbents," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 157(C), pages 255-294.
    18. Konstantinos Angelopoulos & Andrea Benecchi & James Malley, 2017. "Can subsidising job-related training reduce inequality?," Working Papers 2017_10, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow.
    19. Heckman, James J. & Lochner, Lance J. & Todd, Petra E., 2006. "Earnings Functions, Rates of Return and Treatment Effects: The Mincer Equation and Beyond," Handbook of the Economics of Education, in: Erik Hanushek & F. Welch (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Education, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 307-458, Elsevier.
    20. Gregor Jarosch & Ezra Oberfield & Esteban Rossi‐Hansberg, 2021. "Learning From Coworkers," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 89(2), pages 647-676, March.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17495. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.