Germs, Roads and Trade : Theory and Evidence on the Value of Diversification in Global Sourcing

Research output: Working PapersWorking paper

View graph of relations



Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017
Externally publishedYes


This paper investigates the resilience of Chinese manufacturing importers to supply chain disruptions by exploiting the 2003 SARS epidemic as a natural experiment. I show both in theory and empirics that geographical diversification is crucial in building a resilient supply chain. I also find that reduction in trade costs induces firms to further diversify. Connectivity to the transportation network facilitates diversification in input sourcing and reduces the negative impact of SARS. Infrastructure is therefore useful not only in improving the efficiency of the economy, but also in increasing its resilience to shocks.

Research Area(s)

  • Global sourcing, Diversification, Resilience, Firm heterogeneity, SARS