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Private Incentives versus Class Interests: Implications for Growth


  • Ani Guerdjikova

    (Cornell University)

  • Levon Barseghyan

    (Cornell University)


We consider an economy, in which the elite controls the means of production. The private incentives of each elite member contradict the interests of the elite as a whole. While each member of the elite would benefit from engaging into new productive activities, the byproduct of such activities is an increase in competition and hence decrease in elite's profits. We provide a model which allows us to parameterize the degree of consolidation of the elite q. We find that in a steady-state, the rate at which new technologies are implemented is constant and is decreasing in q. We next allow the elite to invest into a productivity enhancing public good. We show that the investments in public good increase in q. We conclude that there exists an optimal level of consolidation of the elite which maximizes economic growth. We illustrate our model using examples from the period of the Industrial Revolution in England and Russia.

Suggested Citation

  • Ani Guerdjikova & Levon Barseghyan, 2007. "Private Incentives versus Class Interests: Implications for Growth," 2007 Meeting Papers 795, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed007:795

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Marco Battaglini & Stephen Coate, 2008. "A Dynamic Theory of Public Spending, Taxation, and Debt," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 201-236, March.
    2. repec:cup:apsrev:v:83:y:1989:i:04:p:1181-1206_08 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Daron Acemoglu & James A. Robinson, 2001. "A Theory of Political Transitions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 938-963, September.
    4. Oded Galor & Joseph Zeira, 1993. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(1), pages 35-52.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ani Guerdjikova, 2007. "The New Institutional Economics of Markets. Comment," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 163(3), pages 517-525, September.

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