This article examines changing international technology gaps over the recent period of globalization, 1972–2001, using a novel measure of technology. It evaluates each economy's technology level based on the goods it exports, considering each product's average productivity and relative quality level. The analysis reveals a growing disparity between the most- and least-sophisticated economies and a lack of intradistributional mobility. Results are consistent with a view of globalization in which emergent specialization patterns in advanced economies allow them to maintain and even extend their lead over technological latecomers, even as some developing economies are climbing up the ladder.
Keywords: technology gaps; globalization; innovation; quality differentiation; O11; O33; O57; F15
Journal Article. 14589 words. Illustrated.
Subjects: Technological Change; Research and Development ; Economywide Country Studies ; International Trade ; Economic Development
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