Choosing among alternative technologies

Choosing Among Alternative Technologies: Conditions for Assuring the Feasibility of an Input–output Database or Scenario


untitledThe conceptual reach of the basic input–output modeling framework is substantially extended by new models that incorporate the economic logic of comparative advantage as the basis for the endogenous choice among alternative production technologies. This paper establishes procedures that define the conditions under which the database used for scenario analysis in this extended framework assures the existence of an economically feasible solution. We provide a criterion for structural feasibility, the property established by the Hawkins–Simon condition for the basic input–output model, and introduce a criterion for scale feasibility. The logic underlying the tests is illustrated by numerical examples based on the Rectangular Choice-of-Technology model and database. These procedures can be particularly useful for incorporating engineering and other technical sources of information into multi-regional input–output databases; they can also provide substantial underlying detail about individual technologies, sectors, and factors of production for both feasible and infeasible scenarios.

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