Learning, Technological Capabilities, and Structural Dynamics

Mario Cimoli and Gabriel Porcile

in The Oxford Handbook of Latin American Economics

Published in print July 2011 | ISBN: 9780199571048
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Economics

 Learning, Technological Capabilities, and Structural Dynamics

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  • Economics
  • Economic Development and Growth
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The second section of this chapter presents the structuralist centre–periphery theory, a device to discuss the features that distinguish the Latin American economies (the periphery) from the developed ones (the centre). Structuralism provides a good account of the macrodynamics of technology, specialization, and relative economic growth. However, it lacks a theory of the microeconomics of learning and the accumulation of technological capabilities supporting this macrodynamics. This chapter argues that the Schumpeterian evolutionary school offers such micro-foundations and discusses the various channels linking the Schumpeterian micro with the structuralist macro. The third section discusses the growth trajectory of Latin America in the postwar period from a structuralist-Schumpeterian perspective, relating the accumulation of TCs to different institutional arrangements and policies. It suggests that the arrangements were unfavourable to learning and structural change, and discusses why the region remained in a hysteresis state after the early 1980s.

Keywords: centre–periphery theory; Latin America; Schumpeterian micro; structuralism; technological capability

Article.  9011 words. 

Subjects: Economics ; Economic Development and Growth ; Public Economics

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