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

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  • Gene M. Grossman

Abstract

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.

Suggested Citation

  • Gene M. Grossman, 1989. "Explaining Japan's Innovation and Trade: A model of Quality Competition and Dynamic Comparive Advantage," NBER Working Papers 3194, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3194
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    1. 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 402-414, August.
    2. 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.
    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 1077-1091, December.
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    1. McCorriston, Steve & Sheldon, Ian M., 1992. "International Competitiveness: Implications of New International Economics," Occasional Papers 243178, Regional Research Project NC-194: Organization and Performance of World Food Systems.
    2. Alwyn Young, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," NBER Working Papers 3577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1990. "Lecture Notes on Economic Growth(II): Five Prototype Models of Endogenous Growth," NBER Working Papers 3564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Pontus Braunerhjelm & Per Thulin, 2008. "Can countries create comparative advantages? R&D expenditures, high-tech exports and country size in 19 OECD countries, 1981-1999," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(1), pages 95-111.
    5. Badibanga, Thaddee Mutumba & Diao, Xinshen & Roe, Terry L. & Somwaru, Agapi, 2008. "Dynamics of Structural Transformation: Understanding the Key Factors That Drive Innovative Activities in Selected Asian and African Countries," Bulletins 43890, University of Minnesota, Economic Development Center.
    6. Klaus Waelde, 1994. "Factor endowment, impatience and trade patterns in a small open economy of endogenous growth," International Trade 9403004, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 06 Apr 1994.
    7. Ziesemer, Thomas, 2019. "Japan's productivity and GDP growth: The role of GBAORD, public and foreign R&D," MERIT Working Papers 2019-029, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    8. THW Ziesemer, 2020. "Japan’s Productivity and GDP Growth: The Role of Private, Public and Foreign R&D 1967–2017," Economies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(4), pages 1-25, September.
    9. Badibanga, Thaddee & Diao, Xinshen & Roe, Terry & Somwaru, Agapi, 2009. "Dynamics of structural transformation: An empirical characterization in the case of China, Malaysia, and Ghana," IFPRI discussion papers 856, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).

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