Technology and Development: An Exploration of the Data

We present data on the global diffusion of technologies over time, updating and adding to Comin and Mestieri’s "CHAT" database. We analyze usage primarily based on per capita measures and divide technologies into the two broad categories of production and consumption. We conclude that there has been strong convergence in use of consumption technologies with somewhat slower and more partial convergence in production technologies. This reflects considerably stronger global convergence in quality of life than in income, but we note that universal convergence in use of production technologies is not required for income convergence (only that countries are approaching the technology frontier in the goods and services that they produce).

The full replication code is available for download here. Download the spliced and un-spliced updated CHAT dataset in .csv and STATA .data here.

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