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From Stagnation to Growth:Unified Growth Theory

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The transition from stagnation to growth and the associated phenomenon of the great divergence have been the subject of an intensive research in the growth literature in recent years. The discrepancy between the predictions of exogenous and endogenous growth models and the process of development over most of human history, induced growth theorists to advance an alternative theory that would capture in a single unified framework the contemporary era of sustained economic growth, the epoch of Malthusian stagnation that had characterized most of the process of development, and the fundamental driving forces of the recent transition between these distinct regimes.The advancement of unified growth theory was fueled by the conviction that the understanding of the contemporary growth process would be limited and distorted unless growth theory would be based on micro-foundations that would reflect the qualitative aspects of the growth process in its entirety. In particular, the hurdles faced by less developed economies in reaching a state of sustained economic growth would remain obscured unless the origin of the transition of the currently developed economies into a state of sustained economic growth would be identified, and its implications would be modified to account for the additional economic forces faced by less developed economies in an interdependent world.Unified growth theory suggests that the transition from stagnation to growth is an inevitable outcome of the process of development. The inherent Malthusian interaction between the level of technology and the size and the composition of the population accelerated the pace of technological progress, and ultimately raised the importance of human capital in the production process. The rise in the demand for human capital in the second phase of industrialization, and its impact on the formation of human capital as well as on the onset of the demographic transition, brought about significant technological advancements

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Paper provided by Brown University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2004-15.

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Date of creation: 2004
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Handle: RePEc:bro:econwp:2004-15

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Postal: Department of Economics, Brown University, Providence, RI 02912

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  1. Francisco Rodriguez & Dani Rodrik, 2001. "Trade Policy and Economic Growth: A Skeptic's Guide to the Cross-National Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2000, Volume 15, pages 261-338 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  7. Tamura, Robert, 2002. "Human capital and the switch from agriculture to industry," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 207-242, December.
  8. Arthur J. Robson & Hillard S. Kaplan, 2003. "The Evolution of Human Life Expectancy and Intelligence in Hunter-Gatherer Economies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 150-169, March.
  9. Smith, Douglas, 2001. "International evidence on how income inequality and credit market imperfections affect private saving rates," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 103-127, February.
  10. Alwyn Young, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," NBER Working Papers 3577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  12. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1980. "Testing the Quantity-Quality Fertility Model: The Use of Twins as a Natural Experiment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 227-40, January.
  13. Jacob L. Weisdorf, 2004. "From stagnation to growth: Revisiting three historical regimes," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 17(3), pages 455-472, 08.
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  1. Crucial Assumptions
    by David Stern in Stochastic Trend on 2009-08-15 23:33:00
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  1. Perangkap Malthus in Wikipedia (Indonesian)
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  3. 马尔萨斯陷阱 in Wikipedia (Chinese)
  4. Perangkap Malthus in Wikipedia (Malay)
  5. Malthusian trap in Wikipedia (English)
  6. Economic Growth
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