nep-geo New Economics Papers
on Economic Geography
Issue of 2008‒01‒26
nine papers chosen by
Vassilis Monastiriotis
London School of Economics

  1. Trade, industrial location and environmental consciousness By Sotiris Karkalakos
  2. Socioeconomic indicators for analyzing Convergence: the case of Greece: 1960-2004 By Panagiotis Liargovas; Georgios Fotopoulos
  3. Cities and Growth: The Left Brain of North American Cities: Scientists and Engineers and Urban Growth By Beckstead, Desmond; Brown, W. Mark; Gellatly, Guy
  5. Factors and Mechanisms Causing the Emergence of Local Industrial Clusters - A Meta-Study of 159 Cases. By T. Brenner; A. Mühlig
  8. Convergence in the United States: a tale of migration and urbanization By Riccardo DiCecio; Charles S. Gascon
  9. What Drives Housing Prices Down? : Evidence from an International Panel By Konstantin A. Kholodilin; Jan-Oliver Menz; Boriss Siliverstovs

  1. By: Sotiris Karkalakos (Economics, Keele University)
    Abstract: It is shown in the context of a new economic geography that, when capital is heterogeneous (a degree of environmental sensitivity), then trade liberalization may lead to industrial agglomeration and inter-regional trade. Capital heterogeneity gives local monopsony power to firms but also introduces variations in the quality of the match. Matches occur, under environmental consciousness assumption, giving rise to an agglomeration force, which can offset the forces against, trade costs and the erosion of monopsony power. A robust agglomeration equilibrium is derived analytically and shows that pollution can provide a motive for trade by spatially concentrated industries with environmental sensitivities.
    Keywords: Agglomeration; Pollution; Matching.
    JEL: F10 Q20 R12
    Date: 2007–11
  2. By: Panagiotis Liargovas; Georgios Fotopoulos
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to use socioeconomic indicators for analyzing convergence among Greek regions since 1960. We use two alternative approaches. The first one is based on the coefficient of variation and the second one on quality of life rankings. We confirm the decline of regional inequalities in Greece, with the exclusion of the 1980s. Regions with increased tourist and trade activity are also regions with high quality of life. Border regions are usually the laggards of social and economic development.
    Date: 2008
  3. By: Beckstead, Desmond; Brown, W. Mark; Gellatly, Guy
    Abstract: This paper examines the growth of human capital in Canadian and U.S. cities. Using pooled Census of Population data for 242 urban centres, we evaluate the link between long run employment growth and the supply of different types of skilled labour. The paper also examines whether the scientific capabilities of cities are influenced by amenities such as the size of the local cultural sector. The first part of the paper investigates the contribution of broad and specialized forms of human capital to long-run employment growth. We differentiate between employed degree holders (a general measure of human capital) and degree holders employed in science and cultural occupations (specific measures of human capital). Our growth models investigate long-run changes in urban employment from 1980 to 2000, and control for other factors that have been posited to influence the growth of cities. These include estimates of the amenities that proxy differences in the attractiveness of urban areas. The second part of the paper focuses specifically on a particular type of human capital'degree holders in science and engineering occupations. Our models evaluate the factors associated with the medium- and long-run growth of these occupations. Particular attention is placed on disentangling the relationships between science and engineering growth and other forms of human capital.
    Keywords: Science and technology, Business performance and ownership, Human resources in science and technology, Regional and urban profiles, Innovation
    Date: 2008–01–08
  4. By: Eda UNAL; Susan E. CHEN; Brigitte S. WALDORF (Department of Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture, Purdue University)
    Abstract: Healthy populations and access to health care services are significant factors influencing economic development and prosperity. Since geographic access is an essential feature of an overall health system, it is important for health service researchers to develop accurate measures of physical access to health. In this paper we develop a series of gravity-based health care accessibility measures for all the counties in Indiana. The measures go beyond local availability of health care services within a county and account for travel impedance via distance-discounted health care services accessible throughout the state. When applied to Indiana counties, the results show sharp disparities in health care accessibility with extensive pockets of poor accessibility in rural and peripheral areas. The research concludes with a demonstration of how spatial accessibility measures can be beneficially used to evaluate of policies indicative of changes in the provision of health services.
    Keywords: spatial accessibility, health care, geographic information systems (GIS),
    JEL: I12
    Date: 2007
  5. By: T. Brenner; A. Mühlig
    Abstract: Local industrial clusters have attracted much attention in the recent economic and geographical literature. A huge number of case studies have been conducted. This paper presents a meta-analysis of the case studies of 159 local industrial clusters in various countries and industries. Based on an overview of the various theories and arguments about the emergence of such clusters in the literature, it analyses the involvement of 35 different local conditions and processes, providing a summary on the knowledge that is gathered in these case studies with a comparison between continents, new and old clusters, and high- and low-tech industries.
    Keywords: local industrial clusters, case studies, meta-study, local conditions Length 44 pages
    JEL: L60 O18 R12
    Date: 2007–12
  6. By: Adela NISTOR; Raymond J.G.M. FLORAX; Jess LOWENBERG-DEBOER; Jason P. BROWN (Department of Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture, Purdue University)
    Abstract: This paper shows that spatial panel data models can be successfully applied to an econometric analysis of farm-scale precision agriculture data. The application focuses on the estimation of the effect of controlled drainage water management equipment on corn yields. Using field-level precision agriculture data and spatial panel techniques, the yield response equation is estimated using the spatial autoregressive error random effects model with temporal heterogeneity, incorporating spatial dependence in the error term, while controlling for the topography, weather and the controlled drainage treatment. Controlling for random effects allows for the disentanglement of the effects of spatial dependence from spatial heterogeneity and omitted variables, and thus, to properly investigate the yield response. The results show that controlled drainage has a statistically significant effect on corn yields. The effect is generally positive but varies widely from year to year and field-to-field. For the two years of data controlled drainage was linked to a 2.2% increase in field average yield, but that varied from a -2.6% to a +6.5%. Evaluated at mean elevation and slope in the east part of the field, controlled drainage is associated with 10 bu/a increase and a 0.6 bu/a decrease in yields in 2005 and 2006, respectively. In the West part of the field, controlled drainage is associated with a 11 bu/a increase in 2006 and 2.81 bu/a decrease in 2005.
    Keywords: Manufactured Housing; corn, drainage, precision agriculture, spatial panel model
    JEL: O18 Q18 R15 R38 R58
    Date: 2008
  7. By: Mehar, Ayub
    Abstract: Regional-based quota in public sector employment was always considered as one of the important cause of the ethnic politics in Pakistan and particularly in Karachi. The majority of educated youth and middle classers in Pakistan belong to the urban areas and big cities where public sector employment is a frictional part of the total employment. However, households’ economic statuses in those areas are closely related with the employment status of the households’ members. This study has one objective only: to test the hypothesis that socio-economic variation between the ethnic groups was the origin of the emerging ethnic politics in Karachi. The disparities in income, employment and social status have been compared between the nine ethnic groups of Karachi. It is noteworthy that statistical evidences have rejected the hypothesis that rise in ethnic politics was a consequence of socio-economic discrepancies between the ethnic groups.
    Keywords: Ethnicity; Income Disparities; Social Status
    JEL: R0 Z10
    Date: 2003
  8. By: Riccardo DiCecio; Charles S. Gascon
    Abstract: We use non-parametric distribution dynamics techniques to reassess the convergence of per capita personal income (PCPI) across U.S. states and across metropolitan and nonmetropolitan portions of states for the period 1969-2005. The long-run distribution of PCPI is bimodal for both states and metro/nonmetro portions. Further- more, the high income mode of the distribution across metro and nonmetro portions corresponds to the single mode of the long-run distribution across metro portions only. These results (polarization or club-convergence) are reversed when weighting by population. The long run distributions across people are consistent with convergence. Migration and urbanization are the forces behind convergence.
    Keywords: Migration, Internal ; Income distribution
    Date: 2008
  9. By: Konstantin A. Kholodilin; Jan-Oliver Menz; Boriss Siliverstovs
    Abstract: In this study, we suggest an explanation for the alarmingly low growth rates of real housing prices in Canada and Germany in comparison to other OECD countries over 1975-2005. We show that the long-run development of housing markets is determined by real disposable per capita income, real long-term interest rate, population growth, and urbanization. The differential development of real housing prices in Canada and Germany is attributed to the specific values of the fundamentals in these two countries. Canada and Germany are characterized by relatively low average growth rates of real disposable income and relatively high interest rates resulting in suppressed housing prices over long period of time. Institutional structure accentuates these tendencies. Given the importance of housing wealth for the private consumption, our paper aims at drawing attention of the policymakers to the necessity of preventing not only the overheating but also overcooling of the housing market that entails lower economic growth rate.
    Keywords: House prices; dynamic panel data; cointegration
    JEL: E30 C23 C51
    Date: 2007

This nep-geo issue is ©2008 by Vassilis Monastiriotis. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.