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Parasites

Author

Listed:
  • Halvor Mehlum

    (University of Oslo)

  • Kalle Moene

    (University of Oslo)

  • Ragnar Torvik

    (University of Trondheim)

Abstract

Unproductive enterprises that feed on productive businesses, are rampant in developing countries. A consequence of parasitic enterprises is that societies may be locked into a self enforcing configuration of beliefs and practices that result in persistent poverty. When entrepreneurs of both productive and parasitic enterprises are drawn from the same limited pool of entrepreneurs, the rise of parasitic profit opportunities may cause economic stagnation and underdevelopment that in turn enhance the profitability of parasitic enterprises relative to productive enterprises. Thus parasitic rent appropriation may induce stagnation, while stagnation may induce parasitic activities. Together the two links can lead developing economies into a poverty trap.

Suggested Citation

  • Halvor Mehlum & Kalle Moene & Ragnar Torvik, 2004. "Parasites," Development and Comp Systems 0406003, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpdc:0406003
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 20
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    File URL: http://econwpa.repec.org/eps/dev/papers/0406/0406003.pdf
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    Other versions of this item:

    • Mehlum, Halvor & Moene, Karl O. & Torvik, Ragnar, 2003. "Parasites," Memorandum 16/2003, Oslo University, Department of Economics.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Jens Christopher Andvig, 1997. "Some International Dimensions to Economic Crime and Police Activity," Nordic Journal of Political Economy, Nordic Journal of Political Economy, vol. 24, pages 159-175.
    2. Halvor Mehlum & Karl Moene & Ragnar Torvik, 2006. "Institutions and the Resource Curse," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(508), pages 1-20, January.
    3. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1990. "Why Doesn't Capital Flow from Rich to Poor Countries?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 92-96, May.
    4. Kevin M. Murphy & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1991. "The Allocation of Talent: Implications for Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 503-530.
    5. Bulow, Jeremy I & Geanakoplos, John D & Klemperer, Paul D, 1985. "Multimarket Oligopoly: Strategic Substitutes and Complements," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(3), pages 488-511, June.
    6. David Dollar & Craig Burnside, 2000. "Aid, Policies, and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 847-868, September.
    7. Mehlum, Halvor & Moene, Karl & Torvik, Ragnar, 2003. "Predator or prey?: Parasitic enterprises in economic development," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 275-294, April.
    8. Usher, D, 1987. "Theft as a Paradigm for Departures from Efficiency," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 39(2), pages 235-252, June.
    9. Acemoglu, Daron, 1995. "Reward structures and the allocation of talent," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 17-33, January.
    10. Halvor Mehlum & Karl Ove Moene & Ragnar Torvik, 2002. "Plunder & Protection Inc," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 39(4), pages 447-459, July.
    11. Baland, Jean-Marie & Francois, Patrick, 2000. "Rent-seeking and resource booms," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 527-542, April.
    12. Murphy, Kevin M & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1993. "Why Is Rent-Seeking So Costly to Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 409-414, May.
    13. Baumol, William J., 1996. "Entrepreneurship: Productive, unproductive, and destructive," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 3-22, January.
    14. Herschel I. Grossman, 1998. "Producers and Predators," Working Papers 98-6, Brown University, Department of Economics.
    15. Bigsten, Arne & Moene, Karl Ove, 1996. "Growth and Rent Dissipation: The Case of Kenya," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 5(2), pages 177-198, June.
    16. Konrad, Kai A & Skaperdas, Stergios, 1998. "Extortion," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(260), pages 461-477, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Parasitic activities; rent seeking; strategig complimentarities;

    JEL classification:

    • O - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth
    • P - Economic Systems

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