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The Long-Run Effects of Mortality Decline in Developing Countries

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  • Lehmijoki, Ulla

    ()
    (University of Helsinki)

  • Palokangas, Tapio K.

    ()
    (University of Helsinki)

Abstract

Since World War II, mortality has declined in the developing world. This paper examines the effects of this mortality decline on demographic and economic growth by a family-optimization model, in which fertility is endogenous and wealth yields utility through its status. The decline in mortality stimulates investment and generates an income stream which promotes population growth, but the desire of status hampers fertility and prevents capital-diluting demographic expansion. If status-seeking is strong, then the decline of mortality decreases population growth below its original level.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5422.

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Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5422

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Keywords: mortality; population growth; economic growth;

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  1. Fisher, Walter H. & Hof, Franz X., 2001. "Status Seeking in the Small Open Economy," Economics Series 106, Institute for Advanced Studies.
  2. Oded Galor, 2006. "The Demographic Transition," Working Papers 2006-24, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  3. Gary S. Becker & Tomas J. Philipson & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2005. "The Quantity and Quality of Life and the Evolution of World Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 277-291, March.
  4. Albanesi, Stefania & Olivetti, Claudia, 2010. "Maternal Health and the Baby Boom," CEPR Discussion Papers 7925, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Isaac Ehrlich & Jinyoung Kim, 2005. "Endogenous Fertility, Mortality and Economic Growth: Can a Malthusian Framework Account for the Conflicting Historical Trends in Population?," NBER Working Papers 11590, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Matthias Doepke, 2002. "Child Mortality and Fertility Decline: Does the Barro-Becker Model Fit the Facts?," UCLA Economics Working Papers 824, UCLA Department of Economics.
  7. Blackburn, Keith & Cipriani, Giam Pietro, 2002. "A model of longevity, fertility and growth," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 187-204, February.
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