NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

General Purpose Technologies

Boyan Jovanovic, Peter L. Rousseau

NBER Working Paper No. 11093
Issued in January 2005
NBER Program(s):   DAE   EFG   PR

Electricity and Information Technology (IT) are perhaps the two most important general purpose technologies (GPTs) to date. We analyze how the U.S. economy reacted to them. The Electricity and IT eras are similar, but also differ in several important ways. Electrification was more broadly adopted, whereas IT seems to be technologically more "revolutionary." The productivity slowdown is stronger in the IT era but the ongoing spread of IT and its continuing precipitous price decline are reasons for optimism about growth in the 21st century.

download in pdf format
   (717 K)

email paper

This paper is available as PDF (717 K) or via email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w11093

Published: Jovanovic, Boyan & Rousseau, Peter L., 2005. "General Purpose Technologies," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 18, pages 1181-1224 Elsevier.

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Bresnahan and Trajtenberg w4148 General Purpose Technologies "Engines of Growth?"
Helpman and Trajtenberg w4854 A Time to Sow and a Time to Reap: Growth Based on General Purpose Technologies
Helpman and Trajtenberg w5773 Diffusion of General Purpose Technologies
BĂ©nabou w10371 Inequality, Technology, and the Social Contract
Rosenberg and Trajtenberg w8485 A General Purpose Technology at Work: The Corliss Steam Engine in the late 19th Century US
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us