21 Pages Posted: 20 Jun 2011 Last revised: 1 Sep 2013
Date Written: July 27, 2012
The least productive agents in an economy can be vital in generating growth by spurring technology diffusion. We develop an analytically tractable model where growth is created as a positive externality from risk taking by firms at the bottom of the productivity distribution imitating more productive firms. Heterogeneous firms choose to produce or pay a cost and search within the economy to upgrade their technology. Sustained growth comes from the feedback between the endogenously determined distribution of productivity, as evolved by past search decisions, and an optimal forward looking search policy. The growth rate depends on characteristics of the productivity distribution, with a thicker tailed distribution leading to more growth.
Keywords: Endogenous Growth, Productivity Distribution, Firm Heterogeneity, Technology Diffusion, Search
JEL Classification: D92, E23, 014, O31, O33, O40
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