EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Are Ideas Getting Harder to Find?

Nicholas Bloom (), Charles Jones (), John van Reenen () and Michael Webb

No 12294, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers

Abstract: In many growth models, economic growth arises from people creating ideas, and the long-run growth rate is the product of two terms: the effective number of researchers and their research productivity. We present a wide range of evidence from various industries, products, and firms showing that research effort is rising substantially while research productivity is declining sharply. A good example is Moore's Law. The number of researchers required today to achieve the famous doubling every two years of the density of computer chips is more than 18 times larger than the number required in the early 1970s. Across a broad range of case studies at various levels of (dis)aggregation, we find that ideas-and in particular the exponential growth they imply - are getting harder and harder to find. Exponential growth results from the large increases in research effort that offset its declining productivity.

New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ino
Date: 2017-09
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations View citations in EconPapers (5) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=12294 (application/pdf)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org

Related works:
Working Paper: Are Ideas Getting Harder to Find? (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Are Ideas Getting Harder to Find? (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Are Ideas Getting Harder to Find? (2017) 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:cpr:ceprdp:12294

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.cepr.org/ ... rs/dp.php?dpno=12294

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ..
Series data maintained by (). This e-mail address is bad, please contact .

 
Page updated 2017-12-07
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:12294