NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Walker Hanlon

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Working Papers

December 2014Agglomeration: A Dynamic Approach
with Antonio Miscio: w20728
This paper studies the sources of agglomeration economies in cities. We begin by introducing a simple dynamic spatial equilibrium model that incorporates spillovers within and across industries, as well as city-size effects. The model generates a dynamic panel-data estimation equation. We implement the approach using detailed new data describing the industry composition of 31 English cities from 1851-1911. We find that industries grow faster in cities where they have more local suppliers or other occupationally-similar industries. Industries do not grow more rapidly in locations in which they are already large, though there can be exceptions. Thus, dynamic agglomeration appears to be driven by cross-industry effects. Once we control for these cross-industry agglomeration effects, we find a...
September 2014Temporary Shocks and Persistent Effects in the Urban System: Evidence from British Cities after the U.S. Civil War
w20471
Urban economies are often heavily reliant on a small number of dominant industries, leaving them vulnerable to negative industry-specific shocks. This paper analyzes the long-run impacts of one such event: the large, temporary, and industry-specific shock to the British cotton textile industry caused by the U.S. Civil War (1861-1865), which dramatically reduced supplies of raw cotton. Because the British cotton textile industry was heavily concentrated in towns in Northwest England, I compare patterns in these cotton towns to other English cities. I find that the shock had a persistent negative effect on the level of city population lasting at least 35 years with no sign of diminishing. Decomposing the effect by industry, I show that the shock to cotton textiles was transmitted to other lo...

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