Endogenous infrastructure development and spatial takeoff

Alex William Trew

    Research output: Working paperDiscussion paper


    Infrastructure development can affect the spatial distribution of economic activity and, by consequence, aggregate structural transformation and growth. The growth of trade and specialization of regions, in turn, affects the demand for infrastructure. This paper develops a model in which the evolution of the transport sector occurs alongside the growth in trade and output of agricultural and manufacturing firms. Simulation output captures aspects of the historical record of England and Wales over c.1710-1881. A number of counterfactuals demonstrate the role that the timing and spatial distribution of infrastructure development plays in determining the timing and pace of takeoff. There can be a role for policy in accelerating takeoff through improving infrastructure, but the spatial distribution of that improvement matters.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationSt Andrews
    PublisherUniversity of St Andrews
    Number of pages60
    Publication statusPublished - 17 Jan 2019

    Publication series

    NameSchool of Economics & Finance Discussion Paper
    PublisherUniversity of St Andrews
    ISSN (Print)0962-4031
    ISSN (Electronic)2055-303X


    • Industrial revolution
    • growth
    • transport
    • spatial development


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