We discuss conceptual reasons for and propose public investment in regional infrastructure as a hybrid form of a place-based regional industrial policy aiming to foster the regional economic activity of lagging regions. We present and empirically test a baseline model using data for 14 Indian regions/states over a period of 39 years. Our results show that place-based regional infrastructure investments, particularly in electricity-generating capacity and width-adjusted length of national highways, positively impact the relative number of firms operating in a region and help foster its economic performance.
- economic activity
- public infrastructure