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Energy and Economic Development: An Assessment of the State of Knowledge

Michael Toman and Barbora Jemelkova

The Energy Journal, 2003, vol. Volume24, issue Number 4, 93-112

Abstract: In large part, the literature on energy and development focuses on how energy demand is driven by economic development and on how energy services can be improved for developing countries. In this paper we begin with a conceptual discussion to identify the channels through which increased availability of energy services might act as a "key" stimulus of economic development along different stages of the development process. We then examine some empirical work to see what evidence it might provide regarding the importance of the possible channels of influence. We do find some important illustrations of a disproportionate role for energy. However, that evidence also underscores the importance of energy development in concert with other forms of development. Moreover, the amount of relevant literature we found was fairly limited, and in many cases it was difficult to separate out various influences in the study to see how energy might be exerting a disproportionate role relative to other influences. This underscores our conclusion that more work is needed to understand the magnitude of its importance for economic development at an economy-wide level.

JEL-codes: F0 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2003
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Working Paper: Energy and Economic Development: An Assessment of the State of Knowledge (2003) Downloads
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