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Catch-up and fall-back through innovation and imitation

Jess Benhabib (), Jesse Perla () and Christopher Tonetti ()

Journal of Economic Growth, 2014, vol. 19, issue 1, 35 pages

Abstract: Will fast growing emerging economies sustain rapid growth rates until they “catch-up” to the technology frontier? Are there incentives for some developed countries to free-ride off of innovators and optimally “fall-back” relative to the frontier? This paper models agents growing as a result of investments in innovation and imitation. Imitation facilitates technology diffusion, with the productivity of imitation modeled by a catch-up function that increases with distance to the frontier. The resulting equilibrium is an endogenous segmentation between innovators and imitators, where imitating agents optimally choose to “catch-up” or “fall-back” to a productivity ratio below the frontier. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Keywords: Endogenous growth; Technology diffusion; Innovation; Imitation; Catch-up; Fall-back; O14; O30; O31; O33; O40 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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Working Paper: Catch-up and Fall-back through Innovation and Imitation (2012) Downloads
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DOI: 10.1007/s10887-013-9095-z

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