EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Lightning, IT Diffusion, and Economic Growth Across U.S. States

Thomas Andersen, Jeanet Bentzen (), Carl-Johan Dalgaard () and Pablo Selaya

The Review of Economics and Statistics, 2012, vol. 94, issue 4, 903-924

Abstract: Empirically, a higher frequency of lightning strikes is associated with slower growth in labor productivity across the 48 contiguous U.S. states after 1990; before 1990, there is no correlation between growth and lightning. Other climate variables (e.g., temperature, rainfall, and tornadoes) do not conform to this pattern. A viable explanation is that lightning influences IT diffusion. By causing voltage spikes and dips, a higher frequency of ground strikes leads to damaged digital equipment and thus higher IT user costs. Accordingly, the flash density (strikes per square kilometer per year) should adversely affect the speed of IT diffusion. We find that lightning indeed seems to have slowed IT diffusion, conditional on standard controls. Hence, an increasing macroeconomic sensitivity to lightning may be due to the increasing importance of digital technologies for the growth process. © 2012 The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Keywords: climate; lightning; IT diffusion; economic growth; United States (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O33 O51 Q54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2012
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (7) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/pdf/10.1162/REST_a_00316 link to full text PDF (application/pdf)
Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

Related works:
Working Paper: Lightning, IT diffusion and economic growth across US states (2011) Downloads
Working Paper: Lightning, IT Diffusion and Economic Growth across US States (2009) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:tpr:restat:v:94:y:2012:i:4:p:903-924

Ordering information: This journal article can be ordered from
https://mitpressjour ... rnal/?issn=0034-6535

Access Statistics for this article

The Review of Economics and Statistics is currently edited by Amitabh Chandra, Olivier Coibion, Bryan S. Graham, Shachar Kariv, Amit K. Khandelwal, Asim Ijaz Khwaja, Brigitte C. Madrian and Rohini Pande

More articles in The Review of Economics and Statistics from MIT Press
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Ann Olson ().

 
Page updated 2020-11-05
Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:94:y:2012:i:4:p:903-924