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Population, Technology and Growth: From the Malthusian Regime to the Demographic Transition

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  • Galor, Oded
  • Weil, David

Abstract

This paper develops a unified model of growth, population, and technological progress that is consistent with long-term historical evidence. The economy endogenously evolves through three phases. In the Malthusian regime, population growth is positively related to the level of income per capita. Technological progress is slow and is matched by proportional increases in population, so that output per capita is stable around a constant level. In the post-Malthusian regime, the growth rates of technology and total output increase. Population growth absorbs much of the growth of output, but income per capita does rise slowly. The economy endogenously undergoes a demographic transition in which the traditionally positive relationship between income per capita and population growth is reversed. In the Modern Growth regime, population growth is moderate and income per capita rises rapidly.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 1981.

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Date of creation: Sep 1998
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1981

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Keywords: demographic transition; Fertility; Growth; Malthusian trap; Population Growth; Technological Change;

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  1. Galor, Oded & Tsiddon, Daniel, 1997. "Technological Progress, Mobility, and Economic Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 363-82, June.
  2. Doms, Mark & Dunne, Timothy & Troske, Kenneth R, 1997. "Workers, Wages, and Technology," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 253-90, February.
  3. Galor, Oded & Weil, David N, 1996. "The Gender Gap, Fertility, and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 374-87, June.
  4. Pritchett, Lant, 1995. "Divergence, big time," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1522, The World Bank.
  5. Claudia Goldin, 1994. "The U-Shaped Female Labor Force Function in Economic Development and Economic History," NBER Working Papers 4707, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Jones, Charles I, 1995. "R&D-Based Models of Economic Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(4), pages 759-84, August.
  7. Srinivasan, T.N. & Robinson, J.A., 1995. "Long-Term Consequences of Population Growth: Technological Change, Natural Resources, and the Environment," Papers 748, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  8. L. Wade, 1988. "Review," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 58(1), pages 99-100, July.
  9. Marvin Goodfriend & John McDermott, 1994. "Early development," Working Paper 94-02, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  10. Eckstein, Zvi & Stern, Steven & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1988. "Fertility Choice, Land, and the Malthusian Hypothesis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 29(2), pages 353-61, May.
  11. Schultz, T. Paul, 1993. "Demand for children in low income countries," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 8, pages 349-430 Elsevier.
  12. George B. Roberts, Chairman, Universities-National Bureau Committee for Economic Research, 1960. "Demographic and Economic Change in Developed Countries," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number univ60-2.
  13. Richard R. Nelson & Edmond S. Phelps, 1965. "Investment in Humans, Technological Diffusion and Economic Growth," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 189, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
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