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Early Literacy Achievements, Population Density and the Transition to Modern Growth

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  • Raouf Boucekkine
  • David de la Croix
  • Dominique Peeters

Abstract

The transition from economic stagnation to sustained growth is often modelled with a "population-induced" technical progress which raised the return to human capital. In this literature the effect of population on productivity is assumed instead of being derived from more primary assumptions, which makes difficult to really assess the validity of the assumption. In this paper the effect of population on productivity is derived from optimal behavior. More precisely, both the number and location of education facilities is chosen optimally by municipalities. Individuals determine their education investment depending on the distance from the nearest school,and also on technical progress and longevity. In this set-up, higher population density makes it optimal to multiply the number of schools, opening the possibility to reach higher educational levels, so paving the way for the subsequent Industrial Revolution. This effect of population on the number of schools is consistent with the available evidence for England, which shows a high rate of school foundations over the period 1550-1650, when population density started to increase

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2004 Meeting Papers with number 426.

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Date of creation: 2004
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed004:426

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Keywords: human capital; population density; education investment; school location; technical progress;

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References

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  1. BOUCEKKINE, Raouf & de la CROIX, David & LICANDRO, Omar, 2002. "Early mortality declines at the dawn of modern growth," CORE Discussion Papers 2002030, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2000. "Natural Selection and the Origin of economic Growth," Working Papers 2000-18, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  3. Oded_Galor, 2004. "From Stagnation to Growth:Unified Growth Theory," Working Papers 2004-15, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  4. Nicolini, Esteban A., 2004. "Mortality, interest rates, investment, and agricultural production in 18th century England," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 130-155, April.
  5. Galor, Oded & Weil, David, 1998. "Population, Technology and Growth: From the Malthusian Regime to the Demographic Transition," CEPR Discussion Papers 1981, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  8. Matthias Doepke, 2001. "Accounting for Fertility Decline During the Transition to Growth," UCLA Economics Working Papers 804, UCLA Department of Economics.
  9. Nils-Petter Lagerlöf, 2006. "The Galor-Weil Model Revisited: A Quantitative Exercise," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 9(1), pages 116-142, January.
  10. Nils-Petter Lagerl–f, 2003. "From Malthus to Modern Growth: Can Epidemics Explain the Three Regimes?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(2), pages 755-777, 05.
  11. Boucekkine, Raouf & de la Croix, David & Licandro, Omar, 2000. "Vintage Human Capital, Demographic Trends and Endogenous Growth," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2000007, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  12. Lubomira Anastassova, 2006. "Productivity Differences and Agglomeration Across Districts of Great Britain," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp289, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  13. Hazan, Moshe & Zoabi, Hosny, 2005. "Does Longevity Cause Growth?," CEPR Discussion Papers 4931, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Kelley, Allen C. & Schmidt, Robert M., 1995. "Aggregate Population and Economic Growth Correlations: The Role of the Components of Demographic Change," Working Papers 95-37, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  17. Antonio Ciccone & Robert E. Hall, 1995. "Productivity and the density of economic activity," Economics Working Papers 120, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  18. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  19. Bartel, Ann P & Lichtenberg, Frank R, 1987. "The Comparative Advantage of Educated Workers in Implementing New Technology," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(1), pages 1-11, February.
  20. Allen Kelley & Robert Schmidt, 1995. "Aggregate population and economic growth correlations: The role of the components of demographic change," Demography, Springer, vol. 32(4), pages 543-555, November.
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