A Reassessment of Italian Regional Convergence through a Non-Parametric Approach
This paper employs the distribution dynamics approach to investigate cross-regional convergence of GDP per worker in Italy, between 1980 and 2003. Two sets of competitive hypotheses are tested: absolute versus conditional and neoclassical versus technological. Supportive evidence of only technological conditional convergence is found. This means that, should the current dynamic persists, cross-regional convergence will take place only if the differences in technological initial conditions and structural characteristics will be evened out. Moreover, as the pervasiveness of organized crime has been considered as a structural factor, the analysis suggests that technical upgrading together with institutional strengthening should be policy makers’ priorities.
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