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Endogenous growth, human capital and the dynamic costs of recessions

John Roufagalas and Alexei G. Orlov

Journal of Economic Studies, 2020, vol. 47, issue 2, 264-285

Abstract: Purpose - The purpose of the paper is twofold: to construct and analyze a novel endogenous growth model, in which unbounded growth is possible without the need to assume increasing returns to scale, and to use the model to estimate the long-run (or dynamic) costs of recessions. Design/methodology/approach - In the proposed model, endogenous technology and human capital accumulation serve as the “twin engines of growth.” Simulations are used to derive growth rates consistent with long-term experience of developed countries, to understand better the differences between balanced growth and unbounded growth and to provide an estimate of the dynamic costs of capacity utilization shocks that produce business cycle-like behavior. Findings - Conservative calculations show that the costs of the capacity shocks can be large – about 1.5 percent of the present value of output over a 100-period horizon. The theoretical model also suggests that differences in the technology production and human capital accumulation functions, possibly due to differing institutions, may help explain diverse growth experiences. Originality/value - The paper, for first time, combines two strands of the economic growth theory – endogenous technology and endogenous human capital production – into a single model. It uses the implications of the model to argue, through simulations, that the benefits of counter-cyclical policies are potentially large in the long run.

Keywords: Endogenous growth; Human capital; Learning by doing; Cyclical depreciation; Long-run costs of recessions; O30; O41; E27; C62 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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