nep-geo New Economics Papers
on Economic Geography
Issue of 2021‒07‒19
eight papers chosen by
Andreas Koch
Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung

  1. Grasping transformative regional development from a co-evolutionary perspective – a research agenda By Camilla Chlebna; Hanna Martin; Jannika Mattes
  2. “Migrant Inventors as Agents of Technological Change” By Ernest Miguelez; Andrea Morrison
  3. Gimme Shelter. Public Housing Programs and Industrialization. The INA-Casa plan, Italy By Alberto Dalmazzo; Guido de Blasio; Samuele Poy
  4. The Effects of Climate Change on Labor and Capital Reallocation By Christoph Albert; Paula Bustos; Jacopo Ponticelli
  5. Broadband speed and firm entry in digitally intensive sectors: The case of Croatia By Drilo, Boris; Stojcic, Nebojsa; Vizek, Maruska
  6. The Diffusion of Disruptive Technologies By Nicholas Bloom; Tarek Alexander Hassan; Aakash Kalyani; Josh Lerner; Ahmed Tahoun
  7. Segregation, housing and neighborhood dissimilarities: A case study for the city of Bochum By Bonakdar, Said Benjamin
  8. The Knowledge Mobility of Renewable Energy Technology By P. G. J. Persoon; R. N. A. Bekkers; F. Alkemade

  1. By: Camilla Chlebna (Institute of Social Sciences, Carl von Ossietzky University, Germany); Hanna Martin (Department of Business Administration and Centre for Regional Analysis, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Sweden); Jannika Mattes (Institute of Social Sciences, Carl von Ossietzky University, Germany)
    Abstract: A comprehensive perspective of regional transformative development is pertinent in light of recurring crises and grand societal challenges. We propose an integrative research agenda for transformative regional development, based on a co-evolutionary perspective on industry-focused regional path development and transitions. Combining existing knowledge from the debates on evolutionary economic geography and transition studies we define three key dimensions of co-evolution: the interrelations between different paths and their impact, interregional and multiscalar development dynamics, and the interdependence between industries and society. We address each dimension separately and suggest concrete avenues for further research.
    Keywords: evolutionary economic geography, regional industrial path development, socio-technical transitions, co-evolution, research agenda
    Date: 2021
  2. By: Ernest Miguelez (Université de Bordeaux and AQR-IREA, University of Barcelona); Andrea Morrison (Bocconi University)
    Abstract: How do regions enter new and distant technological fields? Who is triggering this process? This work addresses these compelling research questions by investigating the role of migrant inventors in the process of technological diversification. Immigrant inventors can indeed act as carriers of knowledge across borders and influence the direction of technological change. We test these latter propositions by using an original dataset of immigrant inventors in the context of European regions during the period 2003-2011. Our findings show that: immigrant inventors generate positive local knowledge spillovers; they help their host regions to develop new technological specialisations; they trigger a process of unrelated diversification. Their contribution comes via two main mechanisms: immigrant inventors use their own personal knowledge (knowledge creation); they import knowledge from their home country to the host region (knowledge transfer). Their impact is maximised when their knowledge is not recombined with the local one (in mixed teams of inventors), but it is reused (in teams made by only migrant inventors). Our work contributes to the existing literature of regional diversification by providing fresh evidence of unrelated diversification for European regions and by identifying important agents of structural change. It also contributes to the literature of migration and innovation by adding fresh evidence on European regions and by unveiling some of the mechanisms of immigrants’ knowledge transmission.
    Keywords: Patents, Migration, Technological diversification, Relatedness, Europe. JEL classification: O30, F20, F60
    Date: 2021–07
  3. By: Alberto Dalmazzo; Guido de Blasio; Samuele Poy
    Abstract: We model the impact of public housing supply on local development by using a spatial equilibrium model with a “share-altering” technological shift from agriculture to manufacturing. The model shows that a larger local availability of houses triggers greater population growth and, consequently, industrialization. It also suggests that these effects are stronger in places that exhibited, prior to the public housing plan, relatively higher population density. These implications are broadly confirmed by an empirical evaluation of the INA-Casa plan, a program implemented by the Italian government in the aftermath of WWII.
    Keywords: Housing policy, urbanization, industrialization
    JEL: O14 R11
    Date: 2021–06
  4. By: Christoph Albert; Paula Bustos; Jacopo Ponticelli
    Abstract: We study the effects of climate change on labor and capital reallocation across regions, sectors and firms. We use newly digitized administrative reports on extreme weather events occurred in Brazil during the last two decades and a meteorological measure of excess dryness relative to historical averages to estimate the effects of droughts in the local economy of affected areas, on the magnitude of the labor and capital flows they generate and on factor allocation in destination regions. We document two main results. In the short run, local economies insure themselves against negative weather shocks via financial integration with other regions. However, in the long run, affected regions experience capital outflows driven by a reduction in loans, consistent with a permanent decrease in investment opportunities. Second, we find that abnormal dryness affects the structure of both the local economy and the economy of areas connected via migrant networks. Directly affected areas experience a sharp reduction in population and employment, concentrated in agriculture and services. While local manufacturing absorbs some of the displaced workers, these regions experience large out-migration flows. Regions receiving climate migrants expand employment in agriculture and services, but not in manufacturing. Using social security data, we provide evidence that labor market frictions direct migrants to firms connected to migrant social networks, which are mostly outside the manufacturing sector. This has implications for the composition of economic activity and the firm size distribution in destination regions.
    JEL: J61 O1 O16 Q54
    Date: 2021–07
  5. By: Drilo, Boris; Stojcic, Nebojsa; Vizek, Maruska
    Abstract: We explore how improvements in digital infrastructure contribute to digital transformation of the Croatian economy. More specifically, we investigate under what conditions improvements in broadband speed are conductive for firm entry in digitally intensive sectors at the local level (cities and municipalities; LGUs) during the period 2014–2017. The results of the benchmark random effects panel data model suggest a 10 percent increase in broadband speed increases the number of new digitally intensive firms by 0.68. Two-way interactions between explanatory variables suggest improvements in broadband infrastructure yield the greatest number of new firm entries in densely populated LGUs, and in LGUs with a higher quality of human capital and greater public investment in physical infrastructure. Using the spatial Durbin panel method, we find improvements in broadband infrastructure exhibit positive firm entry effects both within and between cities and municipalities.
    Keywords: firm entry; digitally intensive sectors; broadband speed; digital transformation; Croatia; spatial spillovers
    JEL: D22 L26 M13 O33
    Date: 2021–07
  6. By: Nicholas Bloom; Tarek Alexander Hassan; Aakash Kalyani; Josh Lerner; Ahmed Tahoun
    Abstract: We identify novel technologies using textual analysis of patents, job postings, and earnings calls. Our approach enables us to identify and document the diffusion of 29 disruptive technologies across firms and labor markets in the U.S. Five stylized facts emerge from our data. First, the locations where technologies are developed that later disrupt businesses are geographically highly concentrated, even more so than overall patenting. Second, as the technologies mature and the number of new jobs related to them grows, they gradually spread across space. While initial hiring is concentrated in high-skilled jobs, over time the mean skill level in new positions associated with the technologies declines, broadening the types of jobs that adopt a given technology. At the same time, the geographic diffusion of low-skilled positions is significantly faster than higher-skilled ones, so that the locations where initial discoveries were made retain their leading positions among high-paying positions for decades. Finally, these technology hubs are more likely to arise in areas with universities and high skilled labor pools.
    JEL: O31 O32
    Date: 2021–07
  7. By: Bonakdar, Said Benjamin
    Abstract: The rising concentration of low-income households and ethnic minorities has become an important policy issue in Germany. The Ruhr Area is particularly interesting, because it is one of the largest conurbations in Europe and experienced radical structural changes in the past, which are connected to the boom and the deindustrialization of the coal mining and steel industry. Since there is no empirical evidence about the extent of residential segregation within the cities of the Ruhr Area, I use micro data on house-coordinates levels to investigate the urban structure of Bochum, which is located in the center of the conurbation. The results show that Bochum can be characterized by four different clusters under consideration of socioeconomic variables, dwelling rents and psychological indicators, e.g. captured by the so-called Sinus Milieus and Limbic Types. With a CHAID decision tree on dwelling rents I learned that especially dwelling size is a key separator between higher and lower dwelling prices in Bochum. The variables identified in the decision tree, like e.g. number of rooms or construction year, are used for hedonic price estimations within all clusters and show positive effects on dwelling rents. Finally, I found that, across all clusters, a rise in different satisfaction types also increase the odds of houses to be located in neighbourhoods with positive moving balance, which is a proxy for a high willingness-to-stay.
    Keywords: Urban housing,housing prices,rent,neighbourhood characteristics,segregation
    JEL: R21 R23 R31
    Date: 2021
  8. By: P. G. J. Persoon; R. N. A. Bekkers; F. Alkemade
    Abstract: In the race to achieve climate goals, many governments and organizations are encouraging the regional development of Renewable Energy Technology (RET). The spatial dynamics and successful regional development of a technology partly depends on the characteristics of the knowledge base on which this technology builds, in particular the analyticity and cumulativeness of knowledge. In this study we systematically evaluate these knowledge base characteristics for a set of 13 different RETs. We find that, while several RETs (photovoltaics, fuel-cells, energy storage) have a highly analytic knowledge base and develop more widespread, there are also important RETs (wind turbines, solar thermal, geothermal and hydro energy) for which the knowledge base is less analytic and which develop less widespread. Likewise, the technological cumulativeness tends to be lower for the former than for the latter group. This calls for regional policies to be specific for different RETs, taking for a given RET into account both the type of knowledge it builds on as well as the local presence of this knowledge.
    Date: 2021–06

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