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Academic Research, Social Interactions and Economic Growth

  • Maria Rosaria Carillo
  • Erasmo Papagni

In this paper we investigate the aggregate implications of social interactions for basic research and economic growth. In particular, we focus on the effects of both the size of the scientific community and the strenght of social exchange among researchers on science productivity and uneven growth. Basic research is modelled as a contest which awards a real prize to the winner and nothing to the losers. Agents are endowed with heterogeneous talent and discoveries are uncertain events which depend on the talent and effort of individuals and on their aggregate values. A CES index of the distribution of both talent and effort summarizes the features of the interactions of the scientific community from which increasing returns may derive. Social interactions among scientists cause multiple equilibria, among which a poverty trap with zero knowledge production and zero growth may emerge.

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Paper provided by D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy in its series Discussion Papers with number 9_2006.

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Date of creation: 01 May 2006
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Handle: RePEc:prt:dpaper:9_2006
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  1. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Scholarly Articles 12490578, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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  4. Mansfield, Edwin, 1991. "Academic research and industrial innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 1-12, February.
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  11. Mansfield, Edwin, 1995. "Academic Research Underlying Industrial Innovations:," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(1), pages 55-65, February.
  12. Stein, Jeremy C. & Dewatripont, Mathias & Aghion, Philippe, 2008. "Academic Freedom, Private-Sector Focus, and the Process of Innovation," Scholarly Articles 3637074, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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  18. Jaffe, Adam B, 1989. "Real Effects of Academic Research," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(5), pages 957-70, December.
  19. Benabou, Roland, 1996. "Equity and Efficiency in Human Capital Investment: The Local Connection," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(2), pages 237-64, April.
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