Seminar III

Monday 10 April 2017  – Theory of production and innovation
Aula 6 SSSUP

h 14:30

On the nature of technologies: knowledge,procedures, artifacts and production inputs
by  Prof.  G. Dosi, SSSUP

In the most general terms, a technology can be seen as a human-constructed means for achieving a particular end, such as the movement of goods and people, the transmission of information or the cure of a disease. These means most often entail procedures regarding how to achieve the ends concerned, particular bits of knowledge, artifacts and of course specific physical inputs necessary to yield the desired outcomes. In fact, the procedures and the underlying knowledge they draw upon, the physical and intangible inputs implicated, and the performance characteristics of outputs are different but complementary aspects of what technology is. These things are the object of this short essay


Production theory: accounting for firm heterogeneity and technical change
by Prof. M. Grazzi , Unibo

The paper presents a new framework to assess firm level heterogeneity and to study the rate and direction of technical change. Building on the analysis of revealed short-run production functions by Hildenbrand (1981), we propose the (normalized) volume of the zonotope composed by vectors-firms in a narrowly defined industry as an indicator of inter-firm heterogeneity. Moreover, the angles that the main diagonal of the zonotope form with the axes provides a measure of the rates and directions of technical change over time. The proposed framework can easily account for n-inputs and m-outputs and, crucially,the measures of heterogeneity and technical change do not require many of the standard assumptions from production theory.

h 15.30


SLIDES: Production theory: accounting for firm heterogeneity and technical change