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Essays in applied spatial economics.

Menon, Carlo (2010) Essays in applied spatial economics. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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The thesis is composed of four chapters, which investigate different topics in the field of applied urban and spatial economics. The first paper develops an original empirical approach to investigate the role played by labour markets in explaining the pattern of industrial agglomeration in the United States. The methodology allows us to i) obtain an estimate of industrial agglomeration which significantly improves on existing indices, and ii) provide a ranking of industries according to their responsiveness to labour market determinants of agglomeration. Results show that labour market determinants explain around one quarter of the variation in spatial agglomeration across industries. The second paper assesses whether urbanization alleviates rural poverty in surrounding areas in India, using a panel dataset at district level for the period 1981-1999. We find that the effect is substantial and systematic; this is largely attributable to positive spillovers from urbanisation, rather than to the movement of the rural poor to urban areas per se. The third paper investigates an extremely peculiar characteristic of the US patent dataset: there is a large group of inventors who develop one or a few patents during a long period of analysis ("comets"), while a very small group of "stars" inventors develop a huge number of patents. In light of that, the paper first explores the location pattern of comets and stars, and then assesses whether the activity of star inventors is beneficial to the production of comet patents in the same city and technological category. The fourth paper describes the effects of bank liberalization on the geographical penetration of branches in the city of Antwerp (BE). Our results show that, coinciding with the strongest wave of the deregulation and concentration process, banks systematically exit from low income neighbourhoods.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Economics, Labor, Economics, General
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses
Departments > Geography and Environment

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