Topic:Reconstruction Aid, Public Infrastructure, and Economic Development
Speaker:Michela Giorcelli, University of California
Time:Tuesday,May 15, 13:30-15:00p.m
Place:RoomK01, Guanghua Building 2
This paper studies the effects of international reconstruction aid on long-term economic growth. It exploits plausibly exogenous differences between Italian provinces in the amount of grants disbursed through the Marshall Plan for the reconstruction of public infrastructure. Provinces that received more reconstruction grants experienced a larger increase in the number of industrial firms and workers. Individuals and firms in these areas also started developing more patents. The same provinces experienced a faster mechanization of the agricultural sector. Motorized machines, such as tractors, replaced workers and significantly boosted agricultural production. Finally, we show how reconstruction grants induced economic growth by allowing Italian provinces to modernize their transportation and communication networks damaged during WWII.
Michela Giorcelli is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics at the University of California - Los Angeles, a Faculty Research Fellow at the NBER, and a Faculty Affiliate at the California Center for Population Research. Her interests lie at the intersection between Economic History, Labor Economics and Economics of Innovation. Her research primarily focuses on the determinants of productivity and innovation in the 20th century.
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