Permanent International Productivity Growth Differentials in an Integrated Global Economy
The paper analyzes the role of differences in household behavior as a source of persistent and even permanent differences between national or regional productivity growth rates, when there are constant static returns to scale in production and costless international diffusion of technology. A binding self-financing constraint on human capital formation can account for permanent international productivity growth differentials. An alternative mechanism is the nontradedness of an essential input, such as human capital, in the growth process. Differences in national policies toward private saving (whether through lump-sum intergenerational redistribution or through the taxation of financial asset income), toward the subsidization of human capital formation (student loans) and toward the free provision of public sector inputs in the human capital formation process also influence the long-run growth differentials.
Published: Scandinavian Journal of Economics, vol 95, no. 4, 1993, pp. 467-493