Innovation, Productivity, and Economic Dynamics
This research group belongs to the IWH Research Cluster Productivity and Innovation. The research group deals with the empirical analysis of the dynamics and determinants of economic development. Thereby, we recognize that these are individual heterogeneous firms with their specific capabilities to innovate and to efficiently allocate scarce resources that shape patterns at higher level of aggregation (e.g. cause structural change). While following a micro-level approach we aim at adding to the understanding of the actual mechanisms and dynamics in the development of economies as well as for the development of policy instruments. For instance, one of the current research projects deals with the effect of import competition on the productivity and innovating behaviour of firms as well as on the dynamic in and of industries
The research group works closely together with CompNet.
Research ClusterProductivity and Innovation
Vertical Grants and Local Public Efficiency. The Inference-disturbing Effect of Fiscal Equalization
in: Public Finance Review, forthcoming
The existing empirical literature on the impact of vertical grants on local public-sector efficiency yields mixed results. Given the fact that vertical financial equalization systems often reduce differences in fiscal capacity, we argue that empirical studies based on cross-sectional data may yield a positive relationship between grants and efficiency of public service production even when the underlying causal effect is not. We provide a simple illustrative theoretical model to show the logic of our argument and illustrate its relevance by an empirical case study for the German state of Saxony-Anhalt. We show that our main argument of an inference-disturbing effect applies to those existing studies that are more optimistic about the impact of vertical grants. Finally, we argue that it may disturb the inference drawn from studies in a number of other countries where vertical grants—intended or not—concentrate in fiscally weak municipalities.
On Mitra's Sufficient Condition for Topological Chaos: Seventeen Years Later
in: Economics Letters, March 2018
This letter reports an easy extension of Mitra’s “easily verifiable” sufficient condition for topological chaos in unimodal maps, and offers its application to reduced-form representations of two economic models that have figured prominently in the recent literature in economic dynamics: the check- and the M-map pertaining to the 2-sector Robinson–Solow–Srinivasan (RSS) and Matsuyama models respectively. A consideration of the iterates of these maps establishes the complementarity of the useful 2001 condition with the 1982 (LMPY) theorem of Li–Misiurewicz–Pianigiani–Yorke when supplemented by a geometric construction elaborated in Khan–Piazza (2011).
On Growing through Cycles: Matsuyama's M-map and Li-Yorke Chaos
in: Journal of Mathematical Economics, January 2018
Recent work of Gardini et al. (2008), building on earlier work of Mitra (2001) and Mukherji (2005), considers the so-called M-map that generates a dynamical system underlying Matsuyama’s (1999) endogenous growth model. We offer proofs of the fact that there do not exist 3- or 5-period cycles in the M-map, and an example (a numerical proof) of the existence of a 7-period cycle. We use the latter, and a construction in Khan and Piazza (2011), to identify a range of parameter values of the M-map that guarantee the existence of cycles of all periods, except 3 and 5. Our argumentation relies on, and reports, the first four iterations of the M-map that may have independent interest.
Criminal Network Formation and Optimal Detection Policy: The Role of Cascade of Detection
in: Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, September 2017
This paper investigates the effect of cascade of detection, how detection of a criminal triggers detection of his network neighbors, on criminal network formation. We develop a model in which criminals choose both links and actions. We show that the degree of cascade of detection plays an important role in shaping equilibrium criminal networks. Surprisingly, greater cascade of detection could reduce ex ante social welfare. In particular, we prove that full cascade of detection yields a weakly denser criminal network than that under partial cascade of detection. We further characterize the optimal allocation of the detection resource and demonstrate that it should be highly asymmetric among ex ante identical agents.
The Effects of Local Elections on National Military Spending: A Cross-country Study
in: Defence and Peace Economics, No. 3, 2017
In this paper, we study the domestic political determinants of military spending. Our conceptual framework suggests that power distribution over local and central governments influences the government provision of national public goods, in our context, military expenditure. Drawing on a large cross-country panel, we demonstrate that having local elections will decrease a country’s military expenditure markedly, controlling for other political and economic variables. According to our preferred estimates, a country’s military expenditure is on average 20% lower if its state government officials are locally elected, which is consistent with our theoretical prediction.
TV and Entrepreneurship
in: IWH Discussion Papers, No. 17, 2017
We empirically analyse whether television (TV) can influence entrepreneurial identity and incidence. To identify causal effects, we utilise a quasi-natural experiment setting. During the division of Germany after WWII into West Germany with a free-market economy and the socialistic East Germany with centrally-planned economy, some East German regions had access to West German public TV that – differently from the East German TV – transmitted images, values, attitudes and view of life compatible with the free-market economy principles and supportive of entrepreneurship. We show that during the 40 years of socialistic regime in East Germany entrepreneurship was highly regulated and virtually impossible and that the prevalent formal and informal institutions broke the traditional ties linking entrepreneurship to the characteristics of individuals so that there were hardly any differences in the levels and development of entrepreneurship between East German regions with and without West German TV signal. Using both, regional and individual level data, we show then that, for the period after the Unification in 1990 which made starting an own business in East Germany, possible again, entrepreneurship incidence is higher among the residents of East German regions that had access to West German public TV, indicating that TV can, while transmitting specific images, values, attitudes and view of life, directly impact on the entrepreneurial mindset of individuals. Moreover, we find that young individuals born after 1980 in East German households that had access to West German TV are also more entrepreneurial. These findings point to second-order effects due to inter-personal and inter-generational transmission, a mechanism that can cause persistent differences in the entrepreneurship incidence across (geographically defined) population groups.
Support for Public Research Spin-offs by the Parent Organizations and the Speed of Commercialization
in: IWH Discussion Papers,
We empirically analyze whether support by the parent organization in the early (nascent and seed) stage speeds up the process of commercialization and helps spin-offs from public research organizations generate first revenues sooner. To identify the impact of support by the parent organization, we apply multivariate regression techniques as well as an instrumental variable approach. Our results show that support in the early stage by the parent organization can speed up commercialization. Moreover, we identify two distinct channels - the help in developing a business plan and in acquiring external capital - through which support by the parent organization can enable spin-offs to generate first revenues sooner.
Does the Technological Content of Government Demand Matter for Private R&D? Evidence from US States
in: IWH Discussion Papers,
Governments purchase everything from airplanes to zucchini. This paper investigates the role of the technological content of government procurement in innovation. We theoretically show that a shift in the composition of public purchases toward high-tech products translates into higher economy-wide returns to innovation, leading to an increase in the aggregate level of private research and development (R&D). Collecting unique panel data on federal procurement in US states, we find that reshuffling procurement toward high-tech industries has an economically and statistically significant positive effect on private R&D, even after extensively controlling for other R&D determinants. Instrumental-variable estimations support a causal interpretation of our findings.
Technological Intensity of Government Demand and Innovation
in: Ifo Working Papers, Nr. 135,
Governments purchase everything from airplanes to zucchini. This paper investigates whether the technological intensity of government demand affects corporate R&D activities. In a quality-ladder model of endogenous growth, we show that an increase in the share of government purchases in high-tech industries increases the rewards for innovation, and stimulates private-sector R&D at the aggregate level. We test this prediction using administrative data on federal procurement performed in US states. Both panel fixed effects and instrumental variable estimations provide results in line with the model. Our findings bring public procurement within the realm of the innovation policy debate.
Effects of Entrepreneurship Education at Universities
in: Jena Economic Research Papers, Nr. 2012-025, No. 25, 2012
This study analyzes the impact of entrepreneurship education at universities on the intentions of students to become entrepreneurs or self-employed in the short-term (immediately after graduation) and in the long-term (five years after graduation). A difference-in-differences approach is applied that relates changes in entrepreneurial intentions to changes in the attendance of entrepreneurship classes in the same period. To account for a potential bias due to self-selection into entrepreneurship classes, only individuals having no prior entrepreneurial intentions are analyzed. Our results indicate a stimulating effect of entrepreneurship education on students’ intentions to become entrepreneurs or self-employed in the long-term but a discouraging effect on their intentions in the short-term. These results support the conjecture that entrepreneurship education provides more realistic perspectives on what it takes to be an entrepreneur, resulting in ‘sorting’. Overall, the results indicate that entrepreneurship education may improve the quality of labor market matches, the allocation of resources and talent, and increase social welfare. Not distinguishing between short- and long-term intentions may lead to misleading conclusions regarding the economic and social impact of entrepreneurship education.