The Role of Transportation Speed in Facilitating High Skilled Teamwork
Xiaofang Dong (),
Siqi Zheng () and
Matthew Kahn ()
No 24539, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc
High skilled workers gain from face to face interactions. If the skilled can move at higher speeds, then knowledge diffusion and idea spillovers are likely to reach greater distances. This paper uses the construction of China’s high speed rail (HSR) network as a natural experiment to test this claim. HSR connects major cities, that feature the nation’s best universities, to secondary cities. Since bullet trains reduce cross-city commute times, they reduce the cost of face-to-face interactions between skilled workers who work in different cities. Using a data base listing research paper publication and citations, we document a complementarity effect between knowledge production and the transportation network. Co-authors’ productivity rises and more new co-author pairs emerge when secondary cities are connected by bullet train to China’s major cities.
JEL-codes: O15 O31 R4 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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