The bounty of the sea and long-run development

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

We document that a high level of natural productivity of the ocean—a rich bounty of the sea—has had a positive and persistent impact on economic development since pre-industrial times until today. In addition, we document that it is the bounty of the sea of the ancestors of current populations which drives the persistent effect, not geography per se. We argue that an explanation is that a rich bounty of the sea facilitated early coastal settlements and an early coastal orientation of pre-industrial economic activity. This gave rise to occupations outside of agriculture and capabilities that were complementary to early industrialization. In the long run this contributed to an early take-off to sustained economic growth.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Economic Growth
Pages (from-to)259–295
Publication statusPublished - 26 Aug 2020

    Research areas

  • Coastal orientation, Comparative development, Industrialization

ID: 247492588