nep-geo New Economics Papers
on Economic Geography
Issue of 2015‒09‒11
nine papers chosen by
Andreas Koch
Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung

  1. KIBS and the Dynamics of Industrial Clusters: a Complex Adaptive Systems Approach By Benoît Desmarchelier; Faridah Djellal; Faïz Gallouj
  2. Competition between Cities and Their Spatial Structure By AGO Takanori
  3. Absorptive capacity and space By Mário Alexandre Patrício Martins da Silva
  4. Regional co-evolution of firm population, innovationand public research? Evidence from the West German laser industry By Ann-Kathrin Blankenberg; Guido Buenstorf
  5. Workforce location and equilibrium unemployment in a duocentric economy with matching frictions By Etienne Lehmann; Paola L. Montero Ledezma; Bruno Van der Linden
  6. The Permanent Effects of Transportation Revolutions in Poor Countries: Evidence from Africa By Remi Jedwab; Alexander Moradi
  7. ‘Good’ Firms, Worker Flows and Local Productivity By Michel Serafinelli
  8. Dirty spatial econometrics By Giuseppe Arbia; Giuseppe Espa; Diego Giuliani
  9. Two Speed Recovery? Spatial Development in Ireland By Morgenroth, Edgar

  1. By: Benoît Desmarchelier (Xi'an Jiaotong University [Chine] - Xi'an Jiaotong University); Faridah Djellal (CLERSE - Centre lillois d'études et de recherches sociologiques et économiques - CNRS - Université Lille 1 - Sciences et technologies); Faïz Gallouj (CLERSE - Centre lillois d'études et de recherches sociologiques et économiques - CNRS - Université Lille 1 - Sciences et technologies)
    Abstract: An important and highly debated question in economic geography is how to explain the dynamics of industrial clusters, i.e. their emergence and evolution through time. Two main theories are generally explored, without being confronted: the cluster life cycle theory-which mainly adopts an aggregate point of view-and the network-based approach. Although KIBS are an important actor of industrial clusters, these two theories pay little attention to them as a potential driver of clusters' dynamics. We show in this paper that properly taking KIBS into account requires considering an alternative and integrative approach that conciliates these two theories. In particular, we argue that complex adaptive systems (CAS) constitute a promising basis for such a synthesis. We then operationalize the CAS approach by studying an existing industrial cluster-Skywin (aeronautics in Wallonia region, Belgium)-within this framework. For this purpose, we use an exhaustive list of the innovation projects undertaken within this cluster between 2006 and 2014 and we build temporal innovation networks linking the agents of the cluster. It appears that Skywin's innovation networks exhibit a small-world effect. This implies that any agent who takes part into an innovation project of this cluster can easily benefit from knowledge and information generated within another ongoing project. We argue that this effect is an interesting proxy of a cluster's attractiveness and an appropriate aggregate variable for studying clusters' dynamics as it shows cluster's potential for further growth. We also demonstrate that KIBS are the main responsible for the emergence of this small-world effect in Skywin's innovation networks.
    Date: 2015–05
  2. By: AGO Takanori
    Abstract: Spatial competition has dealt with a single city over which firms compete. This paper extends it to a model with multiple cities. Specifically, we construct a spatial Cournot model with circular cities where consumers can choose which city to go under the spatial distribution of firms as determined by a location-quantity game. As a result, firms can agglomerate at a point even in the circular cities in equilibrium due to their ability to enhance consumer surplus at their locating city and rob more consumers of the rival city if they agglomerate to commit to the lower price. A welfare analysis shows excess agglomeration.
    Date: 2015–09
  3. By: Mário Alexandre Patrício Martins da Silva (Faculdade de Economia do Porto)
    Abstract: In this paper, we assume that the absorptive capacity of firms located in a given region is positively influenced by territorial-dependent aspects, and analyze the effects of the spatial elements that explain the differences between territories to access and absorb external knowledge on the innovative performance of regions and the possibility of arising local increasing returns.
    Keywords: Absorptive capacity, knowledge spillovers, complementarities, proximity, innovation, R&D
    JEL: O33 R11
    Date: 2015–09
  4. By: Ann-Kathrin Blankenberg (Chair of Economic Policy and SME Research, University of Göttingen; Platz der Göttinger Sieben 3, 37073 Göttingen, Germany); Guido Buenstorf (Institute of Economics, University of Kassel; Nora-Platiel-Strasse 5, 34109 Kassel, Germany)
    Abstract: We explore the regional co-evolution of firm population size, private-sector patenting and public research in the empirical context of German laser research and manufacturing over more than 40 years from the emergence of the industry to the mid-2000s. Our qualitative as well as quantitative evidence is suggestive of a co-evolutionary process of mutual interdependence rather than a unidirectional effect of public research on private- sector activities.
    Keywords: co-evolution, innovation systems, vector autoregression, laser technology
    JEL: B52 O31 R12
    Date: 2015–08–05
  5. By: Etienne Lehmann (CRED (TEPP) University Panthéon Assas, Paris 2); Paola L. Montero Ledezma (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES)); Bruno Van der Linden (FNRS and UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES))
    Abstract: This article examines unemployment disparities and efficiency in a densely populated economy with two job centers and workers distributed between them. We introduce commuting costs and search-matching frictions to deal with the spatial mismatch between workers and firms. In a decentralized economy job-seekers do not internalize a composition externality they impose on all the unemployed. With symmetric job centers, a change in the distribution of the workforce can lead to asymmetric equilibrium outcomes. We calibrate the model for Los Angeles and Chicago Metropolitan Statistical Areas. Simulations suggest that changes in the workforce distribution have non-negligible effects on unemployment rates, wages, and net output, but cannot be the unique explanation of a substantial mismatch problem.
    Keywords: Spatial mismatch, commuting, urban unemployment, externality
    JEL: J64 R13 R23
    Date: 2015–08–26
  6. By: Remi Jedwab; Alexander Moradi
    Abstract: We exploit the construction and eventual demise of the colonial railroads in Africa to study the impact of transportation investments in poor countries. Using Ghana and Sub-Saharan Africa as a whole, we assembled new data on railroads and cities spanning over one century to show that: (i) Railroads had large effects on the spatial distribution and aggregate level of economic activity during the colonial period, as they constituted a transportation revolution in a context where no modern transportation technology previously existed. (ii) These effects have persisted to date, although railroads collapsed and road networks expanded considerably in the post-independence period. The analysis contributes to our understanding of the heterogeneous impact of transportation investments. It shows that initial investments may have a large effect in poor countries with basic infrastructure. As the countries develop, increasing returns may then solidify their spatial distribution, and subsequent investments may have a smaller effect on local economic development.
    Keywords: Transportation, Railroads, Development, Cities, Path Dependence, Roads
    JEL: O1 O3 O18 R4 R1 N97
    Date: 2015–01
  7. By: Michel Serafinelli (Department of Economics, University of Toronto, Canada)
    Abstract: This paper is the first to present direct evidence showing how localized knowledge spillovers arise from workers changing jobs within the same local labor market. Using a unique dataset combining Social Security earnings records and balance sheet information for the Veneto region of Italy, I first identify a set of highly productive firms, then show that hiring workers with experience at these firms significantly increases the productivity of other firms. My findings imply that worker flows explain around 10 percent of the productivity gains experienced by incumbent firms when new highly productive firms are added to a local labor market.
    Date: 2015–08
  8. By: Giuseppe Arbia; Giuseppe Espa; Diego Giuliani
    Abstract: Spatial data are often contaminated with a series of imperfections that reduce their quality and can dramatically distort the inferential conclusions based on spatial econometric modeling. A ÒcleanÓ ideal situation considered in standard spatial econometrics textbooks is when we fit Cliff-Ord-type models to data where the spatial units constitute the full population, there are no missing data and there is no uncertainty on the spatial observations that are free from measurement and locational errors. Unfortunately in practical cases the reality is often very different and the datasets contain all sorts of imperfections: they are often based on a sample drawn from the whole population, some data are missing and they almost invariably contain both attribute and locational errors. This is a situation of ÒdirtyÓ spatial econometric modelling. Through a series of Monte Carlo experiments, this paper considers the effects on spatial econometric model estimation and hypothesis testing of two specific sources of dirt, namely missing data and locational errors.
    Date: 2015
  9. By: Morgenroth, Edgar
    Date: 2014–12

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