Studies of technical change
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This thesis explores a number of questions related to the factors that influence productivity and technological progress at both aggregate and micro-levels. The main contribution of the current work is its attempt to relate all the studies to developing and transition countries in Eastern Europe. The first chapter develops an endogenous growth model of sector productivity growth that accounts for varying levels of IPR protection usually present in developing and transition countries. One and two-country versions of the model are explored to show how the results change in the presence of international trade, when one country is a technology producer and another a technology consumer. The main finding of the model suggests that in the presence of international trade with a knowledge-producing country, low levels of IPR protection lead to higher levels of sector productivity growth in a technology-consuming country. The second chapter empirically assesses microeconomic exporting-productivity links using the data for Ukrainian manufacturing firms for the years 2000-2005. The results of the estimation show that firms with higher total factor productivity (TFP) in the period prior to entry are much more likely to enter export markets. Age, size and intangible assets of the firm also have significant positive influence on the probability of exporting. Testing of the learning-by-exporting effect is implemented with the use of the propensity score matching technique to address the issues of endogeneity and sample selection. The results for the whole universe of firms in the dataset go in line with common trends, and suggest significant positive post-entry productivity effect. At the industry level, the results confirm the presence of the learning-by-exporting effect in most of the industries included in the analysis. The third chapter concentrates on continuous exporters to study the impact of the type of export dynamics on the firm-level changes in the TFP. The estimation is performed for different types of export markets and products. The results of the analysis confirm that exporting to the more technologically advanced countries results in higher productivity gains as a result of the access to new superior technologies and better managerial practices. Productivity gains can also be higher when capital intensive products are exported to the economically advanced markets.