Abramovitz's Catch-Up Growth Hypothesis: An Analysis of its Origin and Possible Applications for Eastern Europe
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Moses Abramovitz's theory, known as the Catch-Up Growth Hypothesis, attempted to explain what caused Western Europe's Golden Era of economic growth from 1948 until1972. The Catch-Up Growth Hypothesis essentially stated that the key to the economic growth experienced by Western Europe was their ability to import and implement technology from the United States. To be able to accomplish this task, a country must have certain prerequisites ranging from proper human capital investment to proper laws to protect investors and their investments. The purpose of this Senior Individualized Project was to examine the literature from which Abramovitz was able to derive his theory and then attempt to see if this theory is applicable for the countries of Eastern Europe today through a statistical analysis of key economic variables. In particular, I was interested in any correlations between the growth of the countries of Western Europe and membership in the predecessor organizations to the European Union. After performing a literature review and a statistical analysis of available data, I found that there was a correlation between Abramovitz's theory and the statistical data. In addition, I found a correlation existed between the growth of the countries of Westem Europe and their membership in the predecessor organizations to the European Union. It is my recommendation that, once the data becomes available, this topic should be revisited in the future so as to determine if any correlations exist for Eastern European growth levels and membership in the European Union.