CULTURAL CONSTRAINTS ON INNOVATION-BASED GROWTH

Mariko J. Klasing*, Petros Milionis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

To what extent does the cultural composition of a society impose a constraint on its long-run growth potential? We study this question in the context of an innovation-based model of growth where cultural attitudes are endogenously transmitted from one generation to the next. Focusing on attitudes regarding patience, we analyze the two-way interaction between economic growth and the intergenerational transmission of patience. Exploiting this interaction, we compare the long-run growth performance of a culturally heterogeneous society where patience is initially underrepresented in the population with a culturally homogeneous society where all agents are perfectly patient. Our main result is that in the absence of any intrinsic preferences of patient parents to transmit their attitudes to their children, the development paths of the two societies are bound to diverge, with the culturally heterogeneous society experiencing lower growth rates. Yet, if patient parents ceteris paribus prefer their children to be patient like them, we show that the two societies can in the long run grow at the same rate.(JEL D91, E24, O30, O40, Z10)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)796-810
Number of pages15
JournalEconomic Inquiry
Volume52
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Keywords

  • TIME PREFERENCE
  • ECONOMIC-DEVELOPMENT
  • TRANSMISSION
  • SELECTION
  • DYNAMICS
  • IDENTITY
  • TRUST
  • PANEL

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