Economic Aspects of Human Cloning and Reprogenetics
AbstractThis paper analyses the economic issues associated with human cloning and new reproductive technologies. We analyze the incentives for human cloning and its implications for the long run distribution of skills and income. We analyse models of human cloning for different motives, focusing on those which tend to produce new human beings with improved ability. We thus ignore purely therapeutic applications, which may well be the most likely ones to happen in the near future, but have no first-order implications for the long-run distribution of skills and income. An important consequence of these models is that if ability is genetically heritable, cloning tends to increase the proportion of high ability people in society, and that under some hypothesis the distribution of ability converges to a mass point at the highest possible ability level. Under weaker assumptions, it is shown that ability-reducing genes are eventually eliminated. However, if fertility is negatively correlated with ability, cloning leads to a strongly segregated society with a top-ability caste and a bottom ability one which produces clones of the top ability one. The paper also discusses the plausibility of these results in light on the evidence from economics and other sciences on marriage markets, child selection, assisted reproduction, and animals.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 608.
Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2002
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Economic Policy, 2003, 18 (36), 73-122
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Other versions of this item:
- Gilles Saint-Paul, 2003. "Economic aspects of human cloning and reprogenetics," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 18(36), pages 73-122, 04.
- Saint-Paul, Gilles, 2002. "Economic Aspects of Human Cloning and Reprogenetics," IDEI Working Papers 157, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
- Saint-Paul, Gilles, 2002. "Economic Aspects of Human Cloning and Reprogenetics," CEPR Discussion Papers 3641, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
- J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
- J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs
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