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Malthusian Dynamics in a Diverging Europe: Northern Italy 1650-1881

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Author Info

  • Alan Fernihough

    (University College Dublin)

Abstract

Recent empirical research has questioned the validity of using Malthusian theory in pre-industrial England. Using real wage and vital rate data for the years 1650-1881, I provide empirical estimates for a different region { Northern Italy. The empirical methodology is theoretically underpinned by a simple Malthusian model, in which population, real wages and vital rates are determined endogenously. My findings strongly support the existence of a `Malthusian' economy where population growth depressed living standards, which in turn influenced vital rates. In addition, I find no evidence of Boseru- pian effects as increases in population failed to spur sustained technological growth.

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File URL: http://www.ucd.ie/t4cms/wp10_37.pdf
File Function: First version, 2010
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by School Of Economics, University College Dublin in its series Working Papers with number 201037.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 15 Nov 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ucn:wpaper:201037

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Keywords: Economic History; Demographic Economics;

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References

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  1. Kelly, Morgan & O'Gráda, Cormac, 2010. "Living Standards and Mortality since the Middle Ages," CEPR Discussion Papers 8036, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Giovanni Federico & Paolo Malanima, 2004. "Progress, decline, growth: product and productivity in Italian agriculture, 1000-2000," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 57(3), pages 437-464, 08.
  3. Niels Framroze Møller & Paul Sharp, 2008. "Malthus in Cointegration Space: A new look at living standards and population in pre-industrial England," Discussion Papers 08-16, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  4. Eckstein, Zvi & Schultz, T. Paul & Wolpin, Kenneth I., 1984. "Short-run fluctuations in fertility and mortality in pre-industrial Sweden," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 295-317, December.
  5. Massimo Bacci, 1967. "Modernization and Tradition in the Recent History of Italian Fertility," Demography, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 657-672, June.
  6. Crafts, Nicholas & Mills, Terence C., 2009. "From Malthus to Solow: How did the Malthusian economy really evolve?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 68-93, March.
  7. Oded Galor, 2006. "The Demographic Transition," Working Papers 2006-24, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  8. Nicolini, Esteban A., 2007. "Was Malthus right? A VAR analysis of economic and demographic interactions in pre-industrial England," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(01), pages 99-121, April.
  9. Alexander Rathke & Samad Sarferaz, 2010. "Malthus was right: new evidence from a time-varying VAR," IEW - Working Papers 477, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  10. David N. Weil & Oded Galor, 2000. "Population, Technology, and Growth: From Malthusian Stagnation to the Demographic Transition and Beyond," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 806-828, September.
  11. Kremer, Michael, 1993. "Population Growth and Technological Change: One Million B.C. to 1990," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(3), pages 681-716, August.
  12. Tommy E. Murphy, 2010. "Persistence of Malthus or Persistence in Malthus? Mortality, Income, and Marriage in the French Fertility Decline of the Long Nineteenth Century?," Working Papers 363, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  13. Michael Anderson & Ronald Lee, 2002. "Malthus in state space: Macro economic-demographic relations in English history, 1540 to 1870," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 195-220.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Two New Papers On Malthus
    by Mark McG in Geary Behaviour Centre on 2010-12-05 18:39:00
  2. Malthusian Dynamics in a Diverging Europe: Northern Italy, 1650–1881
    by Mark McG in Economics and Psychology Research on 2012-10-02 01:21:00
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Cited by:
  1. Ulrich Pfister & Georg Fertig, 2010. "The population history of Germany: research strategy and preliminary results," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2010-035, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
  2. Uebele, Martin & Pfister, Ulrich & Riedel, Jana, 2012. "Real wages and the origins of modern economic growth in Germany, 16th to 19th centuries," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62076, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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