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A Simple Measure of Economic Complexity

Sabiou Inoua

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Abstract: We show from a simple model that a country's technological development can be measured by the logarithm of the number of products it makes. We show that much of the income gaps among countries are due to differences in technology, as measured by this simple metric. Finally, we show that the so-called Economic Complexity Index (ECI), a recently proposed measure of collective knowhow, is in fact an estimate of this simple metric (with correlation above 0.9).

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Date: 2016-01, Revised 2016-01
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Handle: RePEc:arx:papers:1601.05012