Journal of Economic Growth

, Volume 22, Issue 3, pp 229–272 | Cite as

British economic growth since 1270: the role of education



This paper constructs an original database on physical capital, labor, education, GDP, innovations, technology spillovers, and institutions to analyze the proximate determinants of British economic growth since 1270. Several approaches are taken in the paper to tackle endogeneity. We show that education has been the most important driver of income growth during the period 1270–2010, followed by knowledge stock and fixed capital, while institutions have not been robust determinants of growth. The contribution of education has been equally important before and after the first Industrial Revolution. Overall, the results give strong support to the predictions of Unified Growth Theories.


British long-run growth Science Education Institutions 

JEL Classification

O30 O40 

Supplementary material (61 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (do 60 KB)
10887_2017_9145_MOESM2_ESM.docx (236 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (docx 236 KB)
10887_2017_9145_MOESM3_ESM.dta (485 kb)
Supplementary material 3 (dta 484 KB)


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsMonash UniversityMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.OECD and Sciences-PoParisFrance

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