Population Aging and the Direction of Technical Change
AbstractAn analytical framework is developed to study the repercussions between endogenous capital- and labor-saving technical change and population aging. Following an intuition often attributed to Hicks (1932), I ask whether and how population aging affects the relative scarcity of factors of production, relative factor prices, and the direction of induced technical change. Aging is equivalent to an increase in the old-age dependency ratio of an OLG-economy with two-period lived individuals. In this framework aging increases the relative scarcity of labor with respect to capital. Therefore, there will be more labor- and less capital-saving technical change. Unless there are contemporaneous knowledge spillovers across innovating firms technical change induced by a small increase in the old-age dependency ratio has no first-order effect on current GDP. The presence of capital-saving technical change is shown to imply that the economy's steady-state growth rate is independent of its age structure.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2888.
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
demographic transition; capital accumulation; direction of technical change;
Other versions of this item:
- Irmen, Andreas, 2009. "Population Aging and the Direction of Technical Change," Working Papers 0493, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
- D91 - Microeconomics - - Intertemporal Choice - - - Intertemporal Household Choice; Life Cycle Models and Saving
- D92 - Microeconomics - - Intertemporal Choice - - - Intertemporal Firm Choice, Investment, Capacity, and Financing
- O33 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
- O41 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models
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