Birds of a Feather - Better Together? How Co-Ethnicity and Co-Location Influence Knowledge Flow Patterns

46 Pages Posted: 3 Aug 2006

See all articles by Ajay Agrawal

Ajay Agrawal

University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Devesh Kapur

University of Pennsylvania - Center for the Advanced Study of India; Center for Global Development

John McHale

Smith School of Business

Date Written: February 2, 2006

Abstract

We estimate a knowledge flow production function using patent data associated with U.S. inventors of Indian origin. Our results suggest that co-location and co-ethnicity substitute for rather than complement one another in terms of facilitating knowledge flows. Our model shows this is a sufficient condition for: 1) diversity to be optimal for a city and 2) a dispersed diaspora to be optimal for the economy. However, for dispersion to be optimal for the diaspora itself and for the dispersed equilibrium to be stable the negative interaction effect must outweigh the co-location effect; our results indicate this is not the case.

Keywords: productivity, innovation, knowledge flows, co-location, co-ethnicity, spillovers

JEL Classification: Z13, O33, R12

Suggested Citation

Agrawal, Ajay and Kapur, Devesh and McHale, John, Birds of a Feather - Better Together? How Co-Ethnicity and Co-Location Influence Knowledge Flow Patterns (February 2, 2006). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=920908 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.920908

Ajay Agrawal (Contact Author)

University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management ( email )

105 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario M5S 3E6 M5S1S4
Canada

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Devesh Kapur

University of Pennsylvania - Center for the Advanced Study of India ( email )

Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.sas.upenn.edu/casi/about/devesh.html

Center for Global Development

2055 L St. NW
5th floor
Washington, DC 20036
United States

John McHale

Smith School of Business ( email )

99 University Avenue
Goodes Hall
Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6
Canada

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