IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/red/sed019/1315.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

‘Novel’ Ideas: The Effects of Carnegie Libraries on Innovative Activities

Author

Listed:
  • Enrico Berkes

    (The Ohio State University)

  • Peter Nencka

    (The Ohio State University)

Abstract

We show that the historical rollout of public libraries increased the innovation output of recipient towns. Between 1886 and 1919, Andrew Carnegie donated $1.2 billion ($2018) to fund the construction of more than 1,500 public libraries across the United States. Drawing on a new data set based on original historical records, we identify cities that qualified to receive a library grant, applied for the program, received preliminary construction approval, but ultimately rejected Carnegie’s offer. Using the rejecting cities as a control group, we estimate the effects of Carnegie library formation on patenting activity. We provide evidence that the trends in the patenting activity in the two groups are indistinguishable before the construction of the libraries and then diverge. Cities that accepted grants experienced both short- and long-run gains in patenting activity. We also describe ongoing work to estimate how library exposure during childhood affects long-run innovative potential.

Suggested Citation

  • Enrico Berkes & Peter Nencka, 2019. "‘Novel’ Ideas: The Effects of Carnegie Libraries on Innovative Activities," 2019 Meeting Papers 1315, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed019:1315
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://economicdynamics.org/meetpapers/2019/paper_1315.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Raquel Campos & Fernanda Leon & Ben McQuillin, 2018. "Lost in the Storm: The Academic Collaborations That Went Missing in Hurricane ISSAC," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 128(610), pages 995-1018, May.
    2. Raj Chetty & Nathaniel Hendren, 2018. "The Impacts of Neighborhoods on Intergenerational Mobility I: Childhood Exposure Effects," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 133(3), pages 1107-1162.
    3. Jeffrey L. Furman & Markus Nagler & Martin Watzinger, 2021. "Disclosure and Subsequent Innovation: Evidence from the Patent Depository Library Program," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 13(4), pages 239-270, November.
    4. Jeffrey L. Furman & Megan MacGarvie, 2007. "Academic Science and the Birth of Industrial Research Laboratories in the U.S. Pharmaceutical Industry," NBER Chapters, in: Academic Science and Entrepreneurship: Dual Engines of Growth, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Raj Chetty & Nathaniel Hendren, 2018. "The Impacts of Neighborhoods on Intergenerational Mobility II: County-Level Estimates," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 133(3), pages 1163-1228.
    6. Daniel P. Gross, 2019. "The Consequences of Invention Secrecy: Evidence from the USPTO Patent Secrecy Program in World War II," NBER Working Papers 25545, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Romer, Paul M, 1996. "Why, Indeed, in America? Theory, History, and the Origins of Modern Economic Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 202-206, May.
    8. Eric Chyn, 2018. "Moved to Opportunity: The Long-Run Effects of Public Housing Demolition on Children," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 108(10), pages 3028-3056, October.
    9. Barbara Biasi & Petra Moser, 2018. "Effects of Copyrights on Science - Evidence from the US Book Republication Program," NBER Working Papers 24255, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Saavedra, Martin & Twinam, Tate, 2020. "A machine learning approach to improving occupational income scores," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 75(C).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. William R. Kerr & Frederic Robert-Nicoud, 2020. "Tech Clusters," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 34(3), pages 50-76, Summer.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Collins, William J., 2021. "The Great Migration of Black Americans from the US South: A guide and interpretation," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 80(C).
    2. Richard Disney & John Gathergood & Stephen Machin & Matteo Sandi, 2020. "Does homeownership reduce crime? A radical housing reform in Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp1685, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    3. Kiessling, Lukas, 2021. "How do parents perceive the returns to parenting styles and neighborhoods?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 139(C).
    4. Gregory Gilpin & Ezra Karger & Peter Nencka, 2021. "The Returns to Public Library Investment," Working Paper Series WP-2021-06, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, revised 20 Jul 2021.
    5. Lorenzo Neri, 2020. "Moving Opportunities: The Impact of Public Housing Re-generations on Student Achievement," Working Papers 907, Queen Mary University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
    6. Lara Cockx, 2019. "Moving Towards a Better Future? Migration and Children's Health and Education," LICOS Discussion Papers 41119, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    7. Chung, Bobby W., 2020. "Peers’ parents and educational attainment: The exposure effect," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    8. Disney, Richard & Gathergood, John & Machin, Stephen & Sandi, Matteo, 2020. "Does homeownership reduce crime? A radical housing reform from the UK," CFS Working Paper Series 651, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
    9. Tushar Bharati & Thea Harpley Green, 2021. "Age at school transition and children’s cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 21-06, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    10. Godøy, Anna & Huitfeldt, Ingrid, 2020. "Regional variation in health care utilization and mortality," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(C).
    11. John Gathergood & Fabian Gunzinger & Benedict Guttman-Kenney & Edika Quispe-Torreblanca & Neil Stewart, 2020. "Levelling Down and the COVID-19 Lockdowns: Uneven Regional Recovery in UK Consumer Spending," Papers 2012.09336, arXiv.org, revised Dec 2020.
    12. Kalra, Aarushi, 2021. "A 'Ghetto' of One's Own: Communal Violence, Residential Segregation and Group Education Outcomes in India," SocArXiv rzjct, Center for Open Science.
    13. Will Davis & Alexander Gordan & Rusty Tchernis, 2021. "Measuring the spatial distribution of health rankings in the United States," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(11), pages 2921-2936, November.
    14. Tatyana Deryugina & David Molitor, 2021. "The Causal Effects of Place on Health and Longevity," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 35(4), pages 147-170, Fall.
    15. Michael J. Kottelenberg & Steven F. Lehrer, 2019. "How Skills and Parental Valuation of Education Influence Human Capital Acquisition and Early Labor Market Return to Human Capital in Canada," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(S2), pages 735-778.
    16. Bernhard Ganglmair & Imke Reimers, 2019. "Visibility of Technology and Cumulative Innovation: Evidence from Trade Secrets Laws," CRC TR 224 Discussion Paper Series crctr224_2019_119v1, University of Bonn and University of Mannheim, Germany.
    17. Matthias Doepke & Giuseppe Sorrenti & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2019. "The Economics of Parenting," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 11(1), pages 55-84, August.
    18. Alberto Alesina & Marlon Seror & David Y. Yang & Yang You & Weihong Zeng, 2020. "Persistence through Revolutions," Working Papers DT/2020/09, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
    19. Rodriguez-Segura, Daniel & Campton, Cole & Crouch, Luis & Slade, Timothy S., 2021. "Looking beyond changes in averages in evaluating foundational learning: Some inequality measures," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 84(C).
    20. Heyer, Johanna & Palm, Matthew & Niemeier, Deb, 2020. "Are we keeping up? Accessibility, equity and air quality in regional planning," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 89(C).

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:red:sed019:1315. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/sedddea.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Christian Zimmermann (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/sedddea.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.