The East-West German Gap in Revenue Productivity: Just a Tale of Output Prices?
Journal of Comparative Economics,
East German manufacturers’ revenue productivity is substantially below West German levels, even three decades after German unification. Using firm-product-level data with product quantities and prices, we analyze the role of product specialization and show that the prominent “extended work bench hypothesis” cannot explain these sustained productivity differences. Eastern firms specialize in simpler product varieties generating less consumer value and being manufactured with less or cheaper inputs. Yet, such specialization cannot explain the productivity gap because Eastern firms are physically less productive for given product prices. Hence, there is a genuine price-adjusted physical productivity disadvantage of Eastern compared to Western firms.
13.04.2022 • 8/2022
From Pandemic to Energy Crisis: Economy and Politics under Permanent Stress
The German economy is steering through difficult waters and faces the highest inflation rates in decades. In their spring report, the leading German economic research institutes revise their outlook for this year significantly downward. The recovery from the COVID-19 crisis is slowing down as a result of the war in Ukraine, but remains on track. The institutes expect GDP to increase by 2.7% and 3.1% in 2022 and 2023 respectively. In the event of an immediate interruption to Russian gas supplies, a total of 220 billion euros in German economic output would be at risk in both years.
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30 Years after Reunification, Gross Domestic Product has Served its Purpose as an Indicator
Konferenzband "30 Jahre Deutsche Einheit", März
The comparison of living conditions in East and West Germany is often based on the gross domestic product per inhabitant. However, this measure is not a good welfare indicator in itself. It can be assumed that, measured by the gross domestic product per inhabitant, there will be no further significant equalisation of economic power in East and West Germany in the foreseeable future. This is because the age structure of East Germany, i.e. the ratio of employed persons to inhabitants, is less favourable than in the West. On the other hand, if one looks at important welfare indicators such as consumption opportunities, life expectancy, leisure time and income inequality, living conditions in East and West Germany are more similar than the gross domestic product per inhabitant suggests. In the debates on the catching-up process of East Germany, more emphasis should therefore be placed on labour productivity as a measure of economic strength and on welfare indicators as a measure of the equalisation of living conditions.
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Selbständigkeit nach der Wiedervereinigung
In: Dossier "Lange Wege der Deutschen Einheit", Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung,
Die Zahl der Selbstständigen in Ostdeutschland (ohne Berlin) beläuft sich derzeit auf rund 600 000 und ist das Ergebnis eines über die Jahre zunehmenden Trends. Selbständigkeit wurde in der DDR kaum ein Platz eingeräumt. Zum Zeitpunkt der Wiedervereinigung besaß Ostdeutschland eine Selbständigenquote von nur rund 2,2 Prozent. Dieser Anteil hat sich 2018 auf 9,2 Prozent erhöht. Damit übersteigt die Selbständigenquote Ostdeutschlands diejenige Westdeutschlands seit dem Jahr 2013. Es gilt hierbei jedoch zu beachten, dass das Wachstum der Selbständigenanzahl insbesondere in Ostdeutschland von den Solo-Selbstständigen getragen war. Zudem bestehen im Hinblick auf die sektorale Zusammensetzung mit einem geringeren Anteil an wissensintensiven Wirtschaftszweigen als in Westdeutschland noch Unterschiede zwischen Ost- und Westdeutschland. Aktuelle Untersuchungen zeigen jedoch auch, dass sich die Situation der Selbstständigen in Deutschland zum aktuellen Zeitpunkt deutlich verbessert hat.
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East Germany Rearguard Only investments in education will lead to a further catch-up ...
Does Low-pay Persist across Different Regimes? Evidence from the German Unification
Economics of Transition and Institutional Change,
Using German administrative data, we study across-regime low-pay persistence in the context of an economic transformation process. We first show that individuals' initial allocation to the post-unification low-wage sector was close to random in terms of market-regime unobservables. Consistent with a weak connection between individuals' true productivity and their pre-unification low-wage status, the extent of across-regime state dependence is found to be small and appears to vanish over time. For males, across-regime state dependence is most pronounced among the medium- and high-skilled, suggesting the depreciation of human capital as an explanation.
Transformation tables for administrative borders in Germany
Transformation tables for administrative borders in Germany The state has the ability...
United Country – Three Decades After the Wall Came Down
The Berlin Wall, once the symbol of the divided Germany, has now been gone for longer than it ever existed. But the differences within the country are still visible. However, recent research suggests that different economic development does not always follow the former inner-German border. Apart from the west-east divide, differences also emerge between the south and the north or between the cities and the country.