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A Three-Sector Model of Structural Transformation and Economic Development

  • Bah, El-hadj M.

Growth accounting exercises point to aggregate TFP dierences as the dominant source of the large cross-country income dierences. In this paper, I ask which sectors account for the aggregate TFP gap between rich and poor countries. Data limitations for developing countries have led researchers to use indirect methods for estimating sectoral TFPs. This paper proposes a new approach for estimating sectoral TFP using panel data on sectoral employment shares and GDP per capita. The approach builds a model of structural transformation and uses it to infer sectoral TFP time series consistent with the reallocation of labor between sectors and GDP per capita growth of a set of developing countries over a 40-year period. I nd that relative to the US, developing countries are the least productive in agriculture, followed by services and then manufacturing. While these ndings are consistent with empirical studies, they dier from ndings in the growth literature.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 10654.

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Date of creation: Nov 2007
Date of revision: 19 Sep 2008
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:10654
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  1. Douglas Gollin & Stephen Parente & Richard Rogerson, 2002. "The Role of Agriculture in Development," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 160-164, May.
  2. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2003. "Relative prices and relative prosperity," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
  3. Bah, El-hadj, 2009. "Structural Transformation in Developed and Developing Countries," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Frankfurt a.M. 2009 42, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
  4. Prescott, Edward C, 1998. "Needed: A Theory of Total Factor Productivity," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(3), pages 525-51, August.
  5. Kongsamut, Piyabha & Rebelo, Sérgio & Xie, Danyang, 1997. "Beyond Balanced Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 1693, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
  7. Wacziarg, Romain & Welch, Karen Horn, 2003. "Trade Liberalization and Growth: New Evidence," Research Papers 1826, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  8. Lutz Hendricks, 2002. "How Important Is Human Capital for Development? Evidence from Immigrant Earnings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(1), pages 198-219, March.
  9. Gollin, Douglas & Parente, Stephen L. & Rogerson, Richard, 2007. "The food problem and the evolution of international income levels," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(4), pages 1230-1255, May.
  10. Diego Restuccia & Dennis Tao Yang & Xiaodong Zhu, 2003. "Agriculture and Aggregate Productivity: A Quantitative Cross-Country Analysis," Working Papers diegor-03-01, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  11. Margarida Duarte & Diego Restuccia, 2010. "The Role of the Structural Transformation in Aggregate Productivity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(1), pages 129-173.
  12. Jeffrey Sachs & Andrew Warner, 1995. "Economic Reform and the Progress of Global Integration," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1733, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  13. Richard Rogerson, 2007. "Structural Transformation and the Deterioration of European Labor Market Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 12889, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Juan Carlos Cordoba & Marla Ripoll, 2005. "Endogenous TFP and Cross-Country Income Differences," Development and Comp Systems 0512018, EconWPA.
  15. Ngai, L. Rachel & Pissarides, Christopher A., 2005. "Structural Change in a Multi-Sector Model of Growth," IZA Discussion Papers 1800, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Echevarria, Cristina, 1997. "Changes in Sectoral Composition Associated with Economic Growth," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 38(2), pages 431-52, May.
  18. Francesco Caselli, 2004. "Accounting for Cross-Country Income Differences," NBER Working Papers 10828, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Stephen L. Parente & Edward C. Prescott, 2002. "Barriers to Riches," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262661306, March.
  20. John Laitner, 2000. "Structural Change and Economic Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(3), pages 545-561.
  21. Peter Klenow & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 1997. "The Neoclassical Revival in Growth Economics: Has It Gone Too Far?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 73-114 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Parente, Stephen L & Prescott, Edward C, 1994. "Barriers to Technology Adoption and Development," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(2), pages 298-321, April.
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