Growth and Wage Inequality in a Dual Economy

26 Pages Posted: 2 Apr 2005

See all articles by Jonathan R.W. Temple

Jonathan R.W. Temple

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)


Who benefits from economic growth? This paper analyses the distributional impact of different types of growth within a two-sector model. The paper first presents necessary and sufficient conditions for unambiguous changes in wage inequality in a dual economy, based on analysis of the entire Lorenz curve. These conditions are then applied to the Harris-Todaro model with an urban non-agricultural sector and rural agriculture. It is shown that capital accumulation or technical progress in agriculture can shift the Lorenz curve inwards and reduce wage inequality, while the effects of development in non-agriculture are typically ambiguous.

Suggested Citation

Temple, Jonathan R.W., Growth and Wage Inequality in a Dual Economy. Bulletin of Economic Research, Vol. 57, No. 2, pp. 145-169, April 2005. Available at SSRN:

Jonathan R.W. Temple (Contact Author)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

United Kingdom

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