A Regional Perspective on the Economic Development of the late Russian Empire
58 Pages Posted: 26 Jan 2015 Last revised: 18 Jul 2018
Date Written: July 3, 2018
This paper is the first to reconstruct gross regional products for all provinces of the former Russian empire. My estimates live up the general expectation that the average citizen was relatively poor in this part of the world in the late 19th century. But the reconstruction also highlights substantial heterogeneity in economic development within the country, comparable to global inequality across countries at that time. Russian provincial GRP per capita in 1897 was positively associated with urbanization, human capital, trade potential and land abundance. Despite partial convergence in economic development in the 20th century, patterns of spatial inequality reminiscent of the late 19th century are still present nowadays.
Keywords: Russia, national accounting, regions
JEL Classification: N13, N15
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