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Explaining Japan's Innovation and Trade: A model of Quality Competition and Dynamic Comparive Advantage

  • Gene M. Grossman

In this paper, I develop a model of dynamic comparative advantage based on endogenous innovation. Firms in each of two countries devote resources to R&D in order to improve the quality of high-technology products. Research successes generate profit opportunities in the world market. The model predicts that a country such as Japan, with abundance of skilled labor and scarcity of natural resources, will specialize relatively in industrial innovation and in the production of high-technology goods. Data are provided to support this prediction. I use the model to explore the effects of R&D subsidies, production subsidies and trade policies on the long-run rates of innovation in trade partner countries and on the long-run pattern of trade.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w3194.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3194.

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Date of creation: Dec 1989
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Bank of Japan Monetary and Economic Studies, Vol. 8, No. 2, pp. 75-100, September 1990.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3194
Note: ITI IFM
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Web page: http://www.nber.org
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  1. Balassa, Bela & Noland, Marcus, 1989. "The changing comparative advantage of Japan and the United States," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 174-188, June.
  2. Bowen, Harry P, 1983. "Changes in the International Distribution of Resources and Their Impact on U.S. Comparative Advantage," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(3), pages 402-14, August.
  3. Segerstrom, Paul S & Anant, T C A & Dinopoulos, Elias, 1990. "A Schumpeterian Model of the Product Life Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1077-91, December.
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