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Which of the the four factors of production -- natural resources, labor, capital,...

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koolkid4life | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted March 12, 2013 at 1:58 AM via web

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Which of the the four factors of production -- natural resources, labor, capital, entrepreneurship -- do you think has had the greatest impact on the development and enduring strength of the U.S. economy? Why?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 12, 2013 at 2:05 AM (Answer #1)

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I would argue that entrepreneurship is the most important of these factors of production.  The second most important would be labor.

Land and capital are much less important.  They are necessary, but they really do not determine which countries will succeed and which will not.  Countries with natural resources such as oil do not necessarily get ahead of countries without.  Capital generally flows to every country that seems like a good bet to make money.  These are not the things that make the US economy go in the long term.

Labor is more important.  In particular, the skills and education of the US labor force do play a major role in our economic development.  A country cannot prosper without a skilled and educated work force.  This is more important than land and capital.

Entrepreneurship, however, is what causes dynamic change.  Many of the most important parts of our economy have come about because of entrepreneurs.  Microsoft, for example, was created by entrepreneurs and has revolutionized our lives.  So has Apple in some ways.  Without entrepreneurs, we do not have people who will take risks that can drive our economy forward.  We would not be likely to enjoy dynamic growth without entrepreneurs.

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