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A closer look at the relationship between life expectancy and economic growth

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  • Théophile T. Azomahou
  • Raouf Boucekkine
  • Bity Diene

Abstract

We first provide a nonparametric inference of the relationship between life expectancy and economic growth using historical data for 18 countries over the period 1820–2005. The obtained shape indicates convexity for low enough values of life expectancy and concavity for large enough values. We then study this relationship using a benchmark model combining “perpetual youth” and learning‐by‐investing. The generated relationship between life expectancy and economic growth is shown to be strictly increasing and concave. We finally examine two models departing from “perpetual youth” by assuming successively age‐dependent earnings and age‐dependent survival probabilities. With age‐dependent earnings, the obtained relationship is hump‐shaped, whereas age‐dependent survival laws reproduce the convex–concave shape detected in prior empirical study.

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  • Théophile T. Azomahou & Raouf Boucekkine & Bity Diene, 2009. "A closer look at the relationship between life expectancy and economic growth," International Journal of Economic Theory, The International Society for Economic Theory, vol. 5(2), pages 201-244, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ijethy:v:5:y:2009:i:2:p:201-244
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1742-7363.2009.00105.x
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    6. David Oxborrow & Stephen J. Turnovsky, 2017. "Closing the Small Open Economy Model: A Demographic Approach," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(1), pages 44-75, February.
    7. MAHYAR Hami, 2016. "Economic Growth And Life Expectancy: The Case Of Iran," Studies in Busine and Economics, Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Faculty of Economic Sciences, vol. 11(1), pages 80-87, April.
    8. Luciano Fanti & Mimmo Iannelli & Piero Manfredi, 2013. "Neoclassical growth with endogenous age distribution. Poverty vs low-fertility traps as steady states of demographic transitions," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 26(4), pages 1457-1484, October.
    9. Goenka, A. & Jafarey, S. & Pouliot, W., 2012. "Pollution, mortality and optimal environmental policy," Working Papers 12/07, Department of Economics, City University London.
    10. Mathieu Lefèbvre & Pierre Pestieau & Gregory Ponthiere, 2019. "Premature mortality and poverty measurement in an OLG economy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 32(2), pages 621-664, April.
    11. Augeraud-Véron, Emmanuelle & D'Albis, Hippolyte, 2009. "Continuous-Time Overlapping Generations Models," TSE Working Papers 09-047, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
    12. Humaira Kamal Pasha, 2021. "Education Attainment and Economic Growth of Asian Developing Countries," Working Papers hal-03230025, HAL.
    13. Hippolyte d'Albis & Emmanuelle Augeraud-Véron, 2013. "Frequency of trade and the determinacy of equilibrium in economies of overlapping generations," International Journal of Economic Theory, The International Society for Economic Theory, vol. 9(1), pages 85-100, March.
    14. Ponthiere, Gregory, 2011. "Existence and stability of overconsumption equilibria," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 74-90.
    15. Katarzyna Growiec & Jakub Growiec & Bogumil Kaminski, 2018. "Social Network Dynamics: Individual-Level Mechanisms and Aggregate Outcomes," Working Papers 2018-036, Warsaw School of Economics, Collegium of Economic Analysis.
    16. Wang, Zhaohua & Asghar, Muhammad Mansoor & Zaidi, Syed Anees Haider & Nawaz, Kishwar & Wang, Bo & Zhao, Wehui & Xu, Fengxing, 2020. "The dynamic relationship between economic growth and life expectancy: Contradictory role of energy consumption and financial development in Pakistan," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 257-266.
    17. Wei-Bin Zhang, 2014. "Endogenous population with human and physical capital accumulation," International Review of Economics, Springer;Happiness Economics and Interpersonal Relations (HEIRS), vol. 61(3), pages 231-252, September.
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    20. Growiec, Jakub, 2010. "Human Capital, Aggregation, And Growth," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 14(2), pages 189-211, April.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General

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