Globalization, De-Industrialization and Mexican Exceptionalism 1750-1879

67 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2006 Last revised: 28 Aug 2021

See all articles by Rafael Dobado Gonzáles

Rafael Dobado Gonzáles

Universidad Complutense Madrid - Department of Economic History

Aurora Gomez-Galvarriato

Center for Research and Teaching of Economics (CIDE) - Division of Economics

Jeffrey G. Williamson

Harvard University - Department of Economics, Laird Bell Professor of Economics, Emeritus; Honorary Fellow, University of Wisconsin - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 2006

Abstract

Like the rest of the poor periphery, Mexico had to deal with de-industrialization forces between 1750 and 1913, those critical 150 years when the economic gap between the industrial core and the primary-product-producing periphery widened to such huge dimensions. Yet, from independence to mid-century Mexico did better on this score than did most countries around the periphery. This paper explores the sources of Mexican exceptionalism with de-industrialization. It decomposes those sources into those attributable to productivity events in the core and to globalization forces connecting core to periphery, and to those attributable to domestic forces specific to Mexico. It uses a neo-Ricardian model (with non-tradable foodstuffs) to implement the decomposition, and advocates a price dual approach, and develops a new price and wage data base 1750-1878. There were three forces at work that account for Mexican exceptionalism: first, the terms of trade and Dutch disease effects were much weaker; second, Mexico maintained secular wage competitiveness with the core; and third, Mexico had the autonomy to devise effective ways to foster industry. The first appears to have been the most important.

Suggested Citation

Dobado Gonzáles, Rafael and Gomez-Galvarriato, Aurora and Williamson, Jeffrey G., Globalization, De-Industrialization and Mexican Exceptionalism 1750-1879 (June 2006). NBER Working Paper No. w12316, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=910848

Rafael Dobado Gonzáles

Universidad Complutense Madrid - Department of Economic History ( email )

School of Business Administration
Somosaguas Campus
Madrid, Madrid 28223
Spain

Aurora Gomez-Galvarriato

Center for Research and Teaching of Economics (CIDE) - Division of Economics ( email )

Carretera Mexico Toluca 3655
01210 Mexico, D.F.
Mexico
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Jeffrey G. Williamson (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Department of Economics, Laird Bell Professor of Economics, Emeritus ( email )

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United States
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Honorary Fellow, University of Wisconsin - Department of Economics

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

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