IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Economic geography : real or hype?


  • Jun Koo
  • Lall, Somik V.


Economic geography has become a mantra for many economists, geographers, and regional scientists. Previous studies have tested the importance of economic geography for production activities and found a significant association between them. Most of these studies, however, have not taken into account that economic geography influences location decisions at the firm level. The authors show a potential bias that can arise when firm location choices are not considered in estimating the contribution of economic geography to industry performance. Their analysis using microdata of Indian manufacturingfirms shows there is an upward bias in the contribution of economic geography to productivity when firm location choices are not considered in the analysis.

Suggested Citation

  • Jun Koo & Lall, Somik V., 2005. "Economic geography : real or hype?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3465, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3465

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Eslava, Marcela & Haltiwanger, John & Kugler, Adriana & Kugler, Maurice, 2004. "The effects of structural reforms on productivity and profitability enhancing reallocation: evidence from Colombia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 333-371, December.
    2. Mortensen, Dale & Pissarides, Christopher, 2011. "Job Creation and Job Destruction in the Theory of Unemployment," Economic Policy, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, vol. 1, pages 1-19.
    3. Brown, J. David & Earle, John S., 2004. "Economic Reforms and Productivity-Enhancing Reallocation in the Post-Soviet Transition," IZA Discussion Papers 1044, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Evans, David S, 1987. "The Relationship between Firm Growth, Size, and Age: Estimates for 100 Manufacturing Industries," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(4), pages 567-581, June.
    5. Bee Yan Aw & Sukkyun Chung & Mark J. Roberts, 2003. "Productivity, output, and failure: a comparison of taiwanese and korean manufacturers," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(491), pages 485-510, November.
    6. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, January.
    7. Klette, Tor Jakob & Griliches, Zvi, 1996. "The Inconsistency of Common Scale Estimators When Output Prices Are Unobserved and Endogenous," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(4), pages 343-361, July-Aug..
    8. Roberts, Mark J & Tybout, James R, 1997. "Producer Turnover and Productivity Growth in Developing Countries," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 12(1), pages 1-18, February.
    9. Evans, David S, 1987. "Tests of Alternative Theories of Firm Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(4), pages 657-674, August.
    10. Elhanan Helpman & Marc J. Melitz & Stephen R. Yeaple, 2004. "Export Versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 300-316, March.
    11. Cabral, Luis, 1995. "Sunk Costs, Firm Size and Firm Growth," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(2), pages 161-172, June.
    12. Levinsohn, J. & Petrin, A., 1999. "When Industries Become More Productive, Do Firms?: Investigating Productivity Dynamics," Working Papers 445, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    13. Jovanovic, Boyan & MacDonald, Glenn M, 1994. "The Life Cycle of a Competitive Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(2), pages 322-347, April.
    14. Jeffrey Campbell, 1998. "Entry, Exit, Embodied Technology, and Business Cycles," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(2), pages 371-408, April.
    15. Haltiwanger, John & Jarmin, Ron & Schank, Thorsten, 2003. "Productivity, investment in ICT and market experimentation: micro evidence from Germany und the US," Discussion Papers 19, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
    16. C.J. Krizan & John Haltiwanger & Lucia Foster, 2002. "The Link Between Aggregate and Micro Productivity Growth: Evidence from Retail Trade," Working Papers 02-18, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    17. Richard Ericson & Ariel Pakes, 1995. "Markov-Perfect Industry Dynamics: A Framework for Empirical Work," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 62(1), pages 53-82.
    18. Luís M B Cabral & José Mata, 2003. "On the Evolution of the Firm Size Distribution: Facts and Theory," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1075-1090, September.
    19. Mark Doms & Eric J. Bartelsman, 2000. "Understanding Productivity: Lessons from Longitudinal Microdata," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(3), pages 569-594, September.
    20. John Haltiwanger & Russell Cooper & Laura Power, 1999. "Machine Replacement and the Business Cycle: Lumps and Bumps," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(4), pages 921-946, September.
    21. John R. Baldwin & Wulong Gu, 2006. "Plant turnover and productivity growth in Canadian manufacturing," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(3), pages 417-465, June.
    22. Steven Klepper & Elizabeth Graddy, 1990. "The Evolution of New Industries and the Determinants of Market Structure," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 21(1), pages 27-44, Spring.
    23. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 2000. "Creative Destruction and Development: Institutions, Crises, and Restructuring," NBER Working Papers 7849, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    24. Lucia Foster & John C. Haltiwanger & C. J. Krizan, 2001. "Aggregate Productivity Growth: Lessons from Microeconomic Evidence," NBER Chapters,in: New Developments in Productivity Analysis, pages 303-372 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    25. Richard E. Caves, 1998. "Industrial Organization and New Findings on the Turnover and Mobility of Firms," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(4), pages 1947-1982, December.
    26. Pakes, Ariel & Ericson, Richard, 1998. "Empirical Implications of Alternative Models of Firm Dynamics," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 1-45, March.
    27. repec:fth:michin:445 is not listed on IDEAS
    28. Olley, G Steven & Pakes, Ariel, 1996. "The Dynamics of Productivity in the Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1263-1297, November.
    29. Klepper, Steven, 1996. "Entry, Exit, Growth, and Innovation over the Product Life Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 562-583, June.
    30. Davis, Steven J. & Haltiwanger, John, 1999. "Gross job flows," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 41, pages 2711-2805 Elsevier.
    31. Davis, Steven J & Henrekson, Magnus, 1999. "Explaining National Differences in the Size and Industry Distribution of Employment," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 59-83, February.
    32. Bastos,Fabiano & Nasir, John, 2004. "Productivity and the investment climate : what matters most?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3335, The World Bank.
    33. Timothy Dunne & Mark J. Roberts & Larry Samuelson, 1988. "Patterns of Firm Entry and Exit in U.S. Manufacturing Industries," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(4), pages 495-515, Winter.
    34. Dollar, David & Hallward-Driemeier, Mary & Mengistae, Taye, 2005. "Investment Climate and Firm Performance in Developing Economies," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(1), pages 1-31, October.
    35. Hallward-Driemeier, Mary & Wallsten, Scott & Lixin Colin Xu, 2003. "The investment climate and the firm : firm-level evidence from China," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3003, The World Bank.
    36. Timothy Dunne & Mark J. Roberts & Larry Samuelson, 1989. "The Growth and Failure of U. S. Manufacturing Plants," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(4), pages 671-698.
    37. Geroski, P. A., 1995. "What do we know about entry?," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 421-440, December.
    38. Baldwin, John R. & Harchaoui, Tarek, 2002. "Productivity Growth in Canada," Productivity Growth in Canada, Statistics Canada, Economic Analysis Division, number stcb6e, February.
    39. Hopenhayn, Hugo A, 1992. "Entry, Exit, and Firm Dynamics in Long Run Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(5), pages 1127-1150, September.
    40. Griliches, Zvi & Regev, Haim, 1995. "Firm productivity in Israeli industry 1979-1988," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 175-203, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. Joshua Drucker, 2012. "The Spatial Extent of Agglomeration Economies: Evidence from Three U.S. Manufacturing Industries," Working Papers 12-01, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    2. Raspe, Otto & van Oort, Frank, 2008. "Firm Growth and Localized Knowledge Externalities," Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy, Mid-Continent Regional Science Association, vol. 38(2).


    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:wbk:wbrwps:3465. 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: (Roula I. Yazigi) or (Pavel Petrov). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.

    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.