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Essays in Economics of Science

by Saha, Subhra Baran

Abstract (Summary)
This dissertation has two chapters. Chapter 2 provides a first step to a formal economic model of science. We model science as a set of fields that draw on one another. Knowledge flows from upstream fields that tend to be theoretical to downstream fields that tend to be applied. Scientists seek to maximize their scientific influence on other scientists and, in a competitive equilibrium, locate heavily in upstream fields, that command a greater number of downstream researchers to cite them. In contrast, a social planner cares about the relative impact of fields on final output. The planner allocates more scientists to applied downstream fields with more immediate returns to increase current consumption. Using Econlit classification codes of papers in economics we show that there is a tendency for applied fields to draw on theoretical fields. Chapter 3 estimates the effect of universities and colleges on their local economies using panel data on cities from 1980 to 2000. The panel structure of the data allows me to include fixed effects for metropolitan areas. To further investigate causality I use two sets of instrumental variables (1) historic values of university variables and (2) a shift share index of R and D. In contrast to the literature, the estimates show a statistically significant and empirically important relationship between universities and the incomes and employment of individuals in a metropolitan area. A one standard deviation increase in academic R and D, (per capita) Bachelors degrees, and the share of S and E degrees in total Bachelors degrees and the stock of Bachelors degree holders in a city each increase individual income by 2%-7% and all of them together increases probability of individual employment by 2.2%.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:The Ohio State University

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:science ivory tower citation influence local labor markets external effects universities and colleges

ISBN:

Date of Publication:01/01/2008

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