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date: 08 August 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Italy's economic growth over its 150 years of unified history did not occur at a steady pace, nor was it balanced across sectors. Relying on an entirely new input (labor and capital) database, this chapter evaluates the different labor productivity growth trends within the Italian economy's sectors, as well as the contribution of structural change to productivity growth. Italy's performance is then set in an international context: a comparison of sectoral labor productivity growth rates and levels within a selected sample of countries (United Kingdom, United States, Germany, Japan, India) allows us to better time, quantify, and gauge the causes of Italy's catching-up process and subsequent more recent slowdown. Finally, the paper analyzes the proximate sources of Italy's growth, relative to the other countries, in a standard growth accounting framework, in an attempt also to disentangle the contribution of both total factor productivity growth and capital deepening to the country's labor productivity dynamics.

Keywords: labor productivity, sectoral disaggregation, international comparison, growth accounting

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