The Origins of American Resource Abundance

David, Paul A. and Wright, Gavin (1995). The Origins of American Resource Abundance. UNU-MERIT Research Memoranda. UNU-MERIT.

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  • Sub-type Working paper
    Author David, Paul A.
    Wright, Gavin
    Title The Origins of American Resource Abundance
    Series Title UNU-MERIT Research Memoranda
    Volume/Issue No. 26
    Publication Date 1995
    Publisher UNU-MERIT
    Language eng
    Abstract American manufacturing exports became increasingly resource-intensive over the very period, roughly 1880-1920, during which the U.S. ascended to the position of world leadership in manufacturing. This paper challenges the simplistic view that the resource-intensity of manufacturing reflected the country's abundant geological endowment of mineral deposits. Instead, it shows that in the century following 1850 the U.S. exploited its natural resource potentials to a far greater extent than other countries and did so across virtually the entire range of industrial minerals. It argues that atural resource abundance"" was an endogenous. ""socially constructed"" condition that was not geologically pre-ordained. It examines the complex legal, institutional, technological and organizational adaptations that shaped the U.S. supply-responses to the expanding domestic and international industrial demands for minerals and mineral-products. It suggests that the existence of strong ""positive feedbacks""--even in the exploitation of depletable resources--was responsible for the explosive growth of the American minerals economy. "
    Copyright Year 1995
    Copyright type All rights reserved
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    Created: Fri, 13 Dec 2013, 13:03:08 JST