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Technological capabilities and growth: A study of economic convergence among Chinese prefectures

Author

Listed:
  • Federico Frattini

    () (Department of Economics and Management, University of Ferrara, Italy.)

  • Francesco Nicolli

    () (IRCReS-CNR, Italy; Department of Economics and Management, University of Ferrara, Italy.)

  • Giorgio Prodi

    () (Department of Economics and Management, University of Ferrara, Italy; CCWE - Tsinghua University, Beijing, China.)

Abstract

The paper focuses on the role of technological capabilities in pushing regional catch-up in China. A leading force behind its fast economic growth has been the government action in reforming rules and institutions and supporting structural change in the long run. The local clustering process of technological capabilities represents an important piece in this strategy. The regional endowment of technological capabilities is approached by the geographical distribution of innovation activities among prefectures. The analysis aims to verify if there is convergence among the prefectural income levels and technological capabilities positively affect the intra-national catching-up process. Accordingly, this contribution presents a growth convergence estimation model that includes four indexes for innovation systems already adopted in literature. Indicators refer to the information about Chinese patent applications at EPO in the period 1996–2010 (OECD REGPAT and Citations databases, January 2014). In order to fit the research questions, patent data have been restricted, re-organized and originally regionalized by the authors running a semantic search of prefectures’ names in the “address” field associated to each Chinese inventor. Main results show that an absolute convergence process already started, although disparities decline slowly, and the accumulation of technological capabilities can foster this dynamic.

Suggested Citation

  • Federico Frattini & Francesco Nicolli & Giorgio Prodi, 2014. "Technological capabilities and growth: A study of economic convergence among Chinese prefectures," SEEDS Working Papers 2914, SEEDS, Sustainability Environmental Economics and Dynamics Studies, revised Dec 2014.
  • Handle: RePEc:srt:wpaper:2914
    as

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    File URL: http://www.sustainability-seeds.org/papers/RePec/srt/wpaper/2914.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Andersson, Fredrik N.G. & Edgerton, David L. & Opper, Sonja, 2013. "A Matter of Time: Revisiting Growth Convergence in China," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 239-251.
    2. He, Dong & Zhang, Wenlang, 2010. "How dependent is the Chinese economy on exports and in what sense has its growth been export-led?," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 87-104, February.
    3. Kyoo-Ho Park & Keun Lee, 2006. "Linking the technological regime to the technological catch-up: analyzing Korea and Taiwan using the US patent data," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(4), pages 715-753, August.
    4. Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg & Rebecca Henderson, 1993. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 577-598.
    5. Abramovitz, Moses, 1986. "Catching Up, Forging Ahead, and Falling Behind," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 46(02), pages 385-406, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Buen Vivir; China; growth; patent; region; catch-up;

    JEL classification:

    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East
    • R19 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Other

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