IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The Diffusion of Development

  • Enrico Spolaore
  • Romain Wacziarg

This paper studies the barriers to the diffusion of development across countries from a longterm perspective. We find that genetic distance, a measure associated with the amount of time elapsed since two populations’ last common ancestors, bears a statistically and economically significant relationship with pairwise income differences, even when controlling for various other measures of geographical, climatic, cultural and historical differences. We provide an economic interpretation of these findings, within a framework in which (a) genetic distance captures divergence in characteristics, including cultural traits, that are transmitted vertically across generations within populations over the long term, and (b) such differences in verticallytransmitted characteristics act as barriers to the horizontal diffusion of innovations from the world technological frontier. The empirical evidence over time and space is consistent with this barriers interpretation.

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: http://ase.tufts.edu/econ/research/documents/2007/spolaoreDiffusion.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Department of Economics, Tufts University in its series Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University with number 0704.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tuf:tuftec:0704
Contact details of provider: Postal: Medford, MA 02155, USA
Phone: (617) 627-3560
Fax: (617) 627-3917
Web page: http://ase.tufts.edu/economics

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. Wacziarg, Romain & Spolaore, Enrico & Alesina, Alberto, 2000. "Economic Integration and Political Disintegration," Scholarly Articles 4553029, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Caselli, Francesco, 2005. "Accounting for Cross-Country Income Differences," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 9, pages 679-741 Elsevier.
  3. John Luke Gallup & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew D. Mellinger, 1998. "Geography and Economic Development," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1856, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  4. Oded Galor, 2004. "From Stagnation to Growth: Unified Growth Theory," GE, Growth, Math methods 0409003, EconWPA.
  5. Stephen L. Parente & Edward C. Prescott, 2002. "Barriers to Riches," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262661306, June.
  6. Guiso, Luigi & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2005. "Cultural Biases in Economic Exchange," CEPR Discussion Papers 4837, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Jeffrey D. Sachs, 2001. "Tropical Underdevelopment," NBER Working Papers 8119, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2000. "Natural Selection and the Origin of economic Growth," Working Papers 2000-18, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  9. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "Reversal of Fortune: Geography and Institutions in the Making of the Modern World Income Distribution," NBER Working Papers 8460, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Masters, William A & McMillan, Margaret S, 2001. " Climate and Scale in Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 167-86, September.
  11. Giuliano, Paola & Spilimbergo, Antonio & Tonon, Giovanni, 2006. "Genetic, Cultural and Geographical Distances," CEPR Discussion Papers 5807, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Francesco Caselli & Wilbur John Coleman II, 2006. "On the Theory of Ethnic Conflict," NBER Working Papers 12125, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Guido Tabellini, 2010. "Culture and Institutions: Economic Development in the Regions of Europe," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 677-716, 06.
  14. Mukand, Sharun W. & Rodrik, Dani, 2002. "In Search of the Holy Grail: Policy Convergence, Experimentation and Economic Performance," CEPR Discussion Papers 3525, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Alberto Alesina & Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2003. "Trade, Growth, and the Size of Countries," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1995, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  16. Paul M Romer, 1999. "Endogenous Technological Change," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2135, David K. Levine.
  17. 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, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116, February.
  18. Rodrik, Dani & Subramanian, Arvind & Trebbi, Francesco, 2002. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions Over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," CEPR Discussion Papers 3643, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Peter Howitt & David Mayer-Foulkes, 2002. "R&D, Implementation and Stagnation: A Schumpeterian Theory of Convergence Clubs," NBER Working Papers 9104, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Sala-i-martin, X. & Barro, R.J., 1995. "technological Diffusion, Convergence and Growth," Papers 735, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  21. Wacziarg, Romain & Alesina, Alberto & Devleeschauwer, Arnaud & Easterly, William & Kurlat, Sergio, 2002. "Fractionalization," Research Papers 1744, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  22. Easterly, William & Levine, Ross, 2003. "Tropics, germs, and crops: how endowments influence economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 3-39, January.
  23. Francesco Caselli, 2005. "Accounting for cross-country income differences," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3567, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  24. Brezis, Elise S & Krugman, Paul R & Tsiddon, Daniel, 1993. "Leapfrogging in International Competition: A Theory of Cycles in National Technological Leadership," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1211-19, December.
  25. Edward L. Glaeser & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Do Institutions Cause Growth?," NBER Working Papers 10568, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Alberto F. Ades & Edward L. Glaeser, 1999. "Evidence On Growth, Increasing Returns, And The Extent Of The Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(3), pages 1025-1045, August.
  27. Jan Fagerberg, 2003. "Innovation: A Guide to the Literature," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20031012, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.
  28. Fearon, James D, 2003. " Ethnic and Cultural Diversity by Country," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 195-222, June.
  29. Case, Anne C, 1991. "Spatial Patterns in Household Demand," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(4), pages 953-65, July.
  30. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2000. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Working Papers 7771, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  31. Alcala, Francisco & Ciccone, Antonio, 2001. "Trade and Productivity," CEPR Discussion Papers 3095, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  32. Alberto Bisin & Thierry Verdier, 2010. "The Economics of Cultural Transmission and Socialization," NBER Working Papers 16512, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  33. repec:rus:hseeco:71039 is not listed on IDEAS
  34. John Luke Gallup & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew D. Mellinger, 1998. "Geography and Economic Development," NBER Working Papers 6849, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  35. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2000. "International Data on Educational Attainment Updates and Implications," NBER Working Papers 7911, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  36. Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2002. "Borders and Growth," NBER Working Papers 9223, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  37. Olsson, Ola & Hibbs Jr., Douglas A., 2000. "Biogeography and Long-Run Economic Development," Working Papers in Economics 26, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics, revised 11 Aug 2000.
  38. Bisin, A. & Verdier, T., 1999. "Beyond the Melting Pot : Cultural Transmission, Marriage, and the Evolution of Ethnic and Religious Traits," DELTA Working Papers 1999-10, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  39. Parente, Stephen L & Prescott, Edward C, 1994. "Barriers to Technology Adoption and Development," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(2), pages 298-321, April.
  40. Baumol, William J, 1986. "Productivity Growth, Convergence, and Welfare: What the Long-run Data Show," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(5), pages 1072-85, December.
  41. Limao, Nuno & Venables, Anthony J., 1999. "Infrastructure, geographical disadvantage, and transport costs," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2257, The World Bank.
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:tuf:tuftec:0704. 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: (Caroline Kalogeropoulos)

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.