Productivity plays a central role in shaping the welfare of societies and the competitiveness of countries. Productivity differences, for instance, explain a large share of the differences in income per capita across countries. This paper investigates the role of productivity heterogeneity across 18 countries over the period 2001-2012. In particular, it analyses the evidence that emerges from the distributed micro-data approach carried out in the OECD MultiProd project. The main outcome of the project is a unique dataset of harmonised crosscountry moments that are representative for the population of firms and comparable across countries even at a detailed industry level. We look at the 90-10 percentile ratio of LP and MFP and show that: i) productivity dispersion is high in both manufacturing and nonfinancial market services; ii) it has increased over time, especially in services; iii) a substantial part of this dispersion comes from differences among firms within the same sector of activity in each country; iv) this within sector dispersion remains the most important component of the overall dispersion for the entire period.
BERLINGIERI, G., BLANCHENAY, P., CALLIGARIS, S. et CRISCUOLO, C. (2017). Firm-level Productivity Differences: Insights from the OECD’s MultiProd Project. International Productivity Monitor, 32, pp. 97-115.