Since 1995, however, the United States has experienced a productivity growth revival whilst in western Europe productivity growth has weakened markedly such that in recent years the United States has outperformed. This reversal of relative growth outcomes has coincided with the disappearance of the Solow Productivity Paradox in the United States and is clearly related to greater American success in exploiting the productivity potential of information and communications technologies (ICT). This raises the question whether the old pattern of faster productivity growth in Europe will reassert itself or whether we have entered a new era where American productivity growth will permanently be the faster of the two. Several explanations for this turnaround in relative growth performance can be suggested:• a European productivity surge is just around the corner following an ICT diffusion lag
This article will seek to evaluate these hypotheses from the standpoint of Moses Abramovitz's insightful approach to understanding postwar European economic growth.