IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

A Theory of Total Factor Productivity and the Convergence Hypothesis: Workers’ Innovations as an Essential Element

Listed author(s):
  • Harashima, Taiji

A theory of total factor productivity (TFP) is needed to explain why substantial differences in international income have been observed. This paper presents a theory of TFP that incorporates workers’ innovations. Because workers are human and capable of creative intellectual activities, they can create innovations even if these innovations are minor. The creative activities of ordinary workers have been almost entirely neglected in economics even though the importance of workers’ learning activities has been emphasized by the theories of learning-by-doing and human capital. I examine this creative element and show that innovations created by ordinary workers are indispensable for efficient production. A production function incorporating workers’ innovations is shown to have a Cobb-Douglas functional form with a labor share of about 70%. The production function offers a microfoundation of the Cobb-Douglas production function and more importantly indicates that heterogeneous parameter values with regard to workers’ innovations are essential factors of the currently observed substantial income difference across economies.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/15508/1/MPRA_paper_15508.pdf
File Function: original version
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 15508.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 31 May 2009
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:15508
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Ludwigstraße 33, D-80539 Munich, Germany

Phone: +49-(0)89-2180-2459
Fax: +49-(0)89-2180-992459
Web page: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as
in new window


  1. Romer, Paul M, 1986. "Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-1037, October.
  2. Jonathan Temple, 2000. "Summary of an Informal Workshop on the Causes of Economic Growth," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 260, OECD Publishing.
  3. Mikael Lindahl & Alan B. Krueger, 2001. "Education for Growth: Why and for Whom?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1101-1136, December.
  4. Dani Rodrik & Arvind Subramanian & Francesco Trebbi, 2004. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions Over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 131-165, 06.
  5. Gary S. Becker, 1962. "Investment in Human Capital: A Theoretical Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 1-9.
  6. Patrick Criqui & Jean-Marie Martin & Leo Schrattenholzer & Tom Kram & Luc Soete & Adriaan Van Zon, 2000. "Energy technology dynamics," International Journal of Global Energy Issues, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 14(1/2/3/4), pages 65-103.
  7. Joskow, Paul L & Rozanski, George A, 1979. "The Effects of Learning by Doing on Nuclear Plant Operating Reliability," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 61(2), pages 161-168, May.
  8. Robert G. King & Ross Levine, 1993. "Finance and Growth: Schumpeter Might Be Right," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 717-737.
  9. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1990. "Why Doesn't Capital Flow from Rich to Poor Countries?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 92-96, May.
  10. McDonald, Alan & Schrattenholzer, Leo, 2001. "Learning rates for energy technologies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 255-261, March.
  11. Bernard, Andrew B. & Durlauf, Steven N., 1996. "Interpreting tests of the convergence hypothesis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1-2), pages 161-173.
  12. Ross Levine, 1997. "Financial Development and Economic Growth: Views and Agenda," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(2), pages 688-726, June.
  13. Yin-Wong Cheung & Antonio Garcia Pascual, 2004. "Testing for output convergence: a re-examination," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(1), pages 45-63, January.
  14. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
  15. Ross Levine & Norman Loayza & Thorsten Beck, 2002. "Financial Intermediation and Growth: Causality and Causes," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series, in: Leonardo Hernández & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Banking, Financial Integration, and International Crises, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 2, pages 031-084 Central Bank of Chile.
  16. Norman Keith Womer, 1984. "Estimating Learning Curves from Aggregate Monthly Data," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 30(8), pages 982-992, August.
  17. Levine, Ross & Zervos, Sara, 1996. "Stock Market Development and Long-Run Growth," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 10(2), pages 323-339, May.
  18. Papineau, Maya, 2006. "An economic perspective on experience curves and dynamic economies in renewable energy technologies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 422-432, March.
  19. Robert J. Barro, 1991. "Economic Growth in a Cross Section of Countries," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 407-443.
  20. Paul Wachtel, 2003. "How much do we really know about growth and finance?," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Q1, pages 33-47.
  21. Bernard, Andrew B & Durlauf, Steven N, 1995. "Convergence in International Output," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 10(2), pages 97-108, April-Jun.
  22. Argote, L. & Epple, D., 1990. "Learning Curves In Manufacturing," GSIA Working Papers 89-90-02, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
  23. Benhabib, Jess & Spiegel, Mark M., 1994. "The role of human capital in economic development evidence from aggregate cross-country data," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 143-173, October.
  24. Demetriades, Panicos O. & Hussein, Khaled A., 1996. "Does financial development cause economic growth? Time-series evidence from 16 countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 387-411, December.
  25. 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 525-551, August.
  26. Burton A. Weisbrod, 1966. "Investing in Human Capital," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 1(1), pages 5-21.
  27. T. N. Srinivasan, 1995. "Long-Run Growth Theories and Empirics: Anything New?," NBER Chapters,in: Growth Theories in Light of the East Asian Experience, NBER-EASE Volume 4, pages 37-70 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Michelacci, Claudio & Zaffaroni, Paolo, 2000. "(Fractional) beta convergence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 129-153, February.
  29. Miketa, Asami & Schrattenholzer, Leo, 2004. "Experiments with a methodology to model the role of R&D expenditures in energy technology learning processes; first results," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(15), pages 1679-1692, October.
  30. Keller, Wolfgang, 1996. "Absorptive capacity: On the creation and acquisition of technology in development," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 199-227, April.
  31. Edward P. Lazear, 2003. "Firm-Specific Human Capital: A Skill-Weights Approach," NBER Working Papers 9679, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  32. Beck, Thorsten & Levine, Ross & Loayza, Norman, 2000. "Finance and the sources of growth," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 261-300.
  33. Luintel, Kul B. & Khan, Mosahid, 1999. "A quantitative reassessment of the finance-growth nexus: evidence from a multivariate VAR," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 381-405, December.
  34. Linda Argote & Bill McEvily & Ray Reagans, 2003. "Managing Knowledge in Organizations: An Integrative Framework and Review of Emerging Themes," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(4), pages 571-582, April.
  35. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
  36. Romer, Paul M, 1987. "Growth Based on Increasing Returns Due to Specialization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(2), pages 56-62, May.
  37. 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.
  38. Dudley, Leonard, 1972. "Learning and Productivity Change in Metal Products," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(4), pages 662-669, September.
  39. Womer, N Keith & Patterson, J Wayne, 1983. "Estimation and Testing of Learning Curves," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 1(4), pages 265-272, October.
  40. Paul S. Adler & Kim B. Clark, 1991. "Behind the Learning Curve: A Sketch of the Learning Process," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 37(3), pages 267-281, March.
  41. King, Robert G. & Levine, Ross, 1993. "Finance, entrepreneurship and growth: Theory and evidence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 513-542, December.
  42. Nemet, Gregory F., 2006. "Beyond the learning curve: factors influencing cost reductions in photovoltaics," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(17), pages 3218-3232, November.
  43. Gary P. Pisano & Richard M.J. Bohmer & Amy C. Edmondson, 2001. "Organizational Differences in Rates of Learning: Evidence from the Adoption of Minimally Invasive Cardiac Surgery," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 47(6), pages 752-768, June.
  44. Kenneth J. Arrow, 1962. "The Economic Implications of Learning by Doing," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 29(3), pages 155-173.
  45. Haddad, Mona & Harrison, Ann, 1993. "Are there positive spillovers from direct foreign investment? : Evidence from panel data for Morocco," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 51-74, October.
  46. Martin B. Zimmerman, 1982. "Learning Effects and the Commercialization of New Energy Technologies: The Case of Nuclear Power," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(2), pages 297-310, Autumn.
  47. Jacob Mincer, 1958. "Investment in Human Capital and Personal Income Distribution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 281-281.
  48. Charles I. Jones, 2005. "The Shape of Production Functions and the Direction of Technical Change," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(2), pages 517-549.
  49. 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.
  50. Jakub Growiec, 2008. "A new class of production functions and an argument against purely labor-augmenting technical change," International Journal of Economic Theory, The International Society for Economic Theory, vol. 4(4), pages 483-502.
  51. Abu-Bader, Suleiman & Abu-Qarn, Aamer S., 2008. "Financial development and economic growth: The Egyptian experience," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 887-898.
  52. Olav Sorenson, 2003. "Interdependence and Adaptability: Organizational Learning and the Long--Term Effect of Integration," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(4), pages 446-463, April.
  53. Beck, Thorsten & Levine, Ross, 2002. "Industry growth and capital allocation:*1: does having a market- or bank-based system matter?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 147-180, May.
  54. Linda Argote & Sara L. Beckman & Dennis Epple, 1990. "The Persistence and Transfer of Learning in Industrial Settings," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 36(2), pages 140-154, February.
  55. Lynch, Lisa M, 1991. "The Role of Off-the-Job vs. On-the-Job Training for the Mobility of Women Workers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 151-156, May.
  56. Marvin B. Lieberman, 1984. "The Learning Curve and Pricing in the Chemical Processing Industries," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(2), pages 213-228, Summer.
  57. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A., 2005. "Institutions as a Fundamental Cause of Long-Run Growth," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 6, pages 385-472 Elsevier.
  58. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:15508. 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: (Joachim Winter)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

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

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.