NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

The Role of Technological Change in Green Growth

David Popp

NBER Working Paper No. 18506
Issued in November 2012
NBER Program(s):   EEE   PR

By reducing the costs of environmental protection, technological change is important for promoting green growth. This entails both the creation of new technologies and more widespread deployment of existing green technologies. This paper reviews the literature on environmentally friendly technological change, with a focus on lessons relevant to developing countries. I begin with a discussion of data available for measuring the various steps of technological change. I continue with a discussion of sources of environmental innovation. Given that most innovation is concentrated in a few rich countries, this leads to a discussion of the remaining role for lower-income countries, followed by a discussion of technology transfer. Because of the importance of market failures, I then discuss the role of both technology policy and environmental policy for promoting environmentally friendly technological change. The review concludes with a discussion of what environmental economists can learn from other fields.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w18506

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