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Cities with forking paths? Agglomeration economies in New Zealand 1976–2018

Stuart Donovan, Thomas de Graaff, Arthur Grimes (), Henri de Groot () and David Maré ()

Regional Science and Urban Economics, 2022, vol. 95, issue C

Abstract: We consider whether external urban economic advantages (agglomeration economies) vary with time and space using detailed micro-data on 134 locations in New Zealand for the period 1976–2018. We find subtle temporal variation, with estimates of agglomeration economies peaking in 1991 and then falling by approximately 1 percentage point in the subsequent 15-years. Since 2006, however, estimates have remained broadly stable; the world has not been getting “flatter”. Our results reveal more significant spatial variation: Large cities offer net benefits in production but not consumption, whereas small locations close to large cities (“satellites”) experience agglomeration economies that are stronger than average.

Keywords: Agglomeration economies; Cities; Productivity; Consumption; New Zealand (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: R11 R23 R30 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1016/j.regsciurbeco.2022.103799

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