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The Bounty of the Sea and Long-Run Development

Pablo Selaya, Carl-Johan Dalgaard () and Anne Sofie B. Knudsen ()
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Anne Sofie B. Knudsen: University of Copenhagen

No 10/2015, Development Research Working Paper Series from Institute for Advanced Development Studies

Abstract: What is the long run impact on development from di¤erences in subsistence strategies during pre- industrial times? Whereas this question has been explored from the point of view of agriculture, remark- ably little attention has been paid to the complementary strategy of relying on marine resources. As a step towards closing this gap, we construct an index ??the Bounty of the Sea index ?which captures the potential abundance of exploitable marine ?sh that individual countries have had access to, and proceed to explore its correlation with economic development. Our analysis reveals that a greater Bounty of the Sea stimulated pre-industrial development, and that countries inhabited by people with ancestry in regions with abundant marine resources are richer today. Probing possible underlying reasons, we ?nd that populations with ancestry in regions rich in marine resources di¤er from societies with a purely agrarian legacy in terms of institutions, cultural values and average personality traits.

Keywords: Fishing; Economic Development; Personality; Culture; Institutions (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O11 O13 O47 O57 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 71 pages
Date: 2015-09
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-gro
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