World Population Growth and Fertility Patterns, 1960-2000. A Simple Model Explaining the Evolution of World’s Fertility During the Second Half of the 20th Century
AbstractIn this paper we attempt to describe the general reasons behind the world population explosion in the 20th century. The size of the population at the end of the century in question, deemed excessive by some, was a consequence of a dramatic improvement in life expectancies, attributable, in turn, to scientific innovation, the circulation of information and economic growth. Nevertheless, fertility is a variable that plays a crucial role in differences in demographic growth. We identify infant mortality, female education levels and racial identity as important exogenous variables affecting fertility. It is estimated that in poor countries one additional year’ of primary schooling for women leads to 0.614 child less per couple on average (worldwide). While it may be possible to identify a global tendency towards convergence in demographic trends, particular attention should be paid to the case of Africa, not only due to its different demographic patterns, but also because much of the continent’s population has yet to experience improvement in quality of life generally enjoyed across the rest of the planet.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 695.
Date of creation: May 2013
Date of revision:
demographic transition; female education; infant mortality; race; convergence;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
- J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
- J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
- J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
- N3 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGE-2013-06-24 (Economics of Ageing)
- NEP-ALL-2013-06-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-HIS-2013-06-24 (Business, Economic & Financial History)
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