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Optimal Aging And Death: Understanding The Preston Curve

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  • Carl-Johan Dalgaard
  • Holger Strulik

Abstract

Does prosperity lead to greater longevity? If so, what is the strength of the income channel? To address these questions we develop a life cycle model in which households are subject to physiological aging. In modeling aging we draw on recent research in the fields of biology and medicine. The speed of the aging process, and thus the age of death, are endogenously determined by optimal health investments. A calibrated version of the model accounts well for the observed nonlinear cross-country link between longevity and income, also known as the Preston curve.

Suggested Citation

  • Carl-Johan Dalgaard & Holger Strulik, 2014. "Optimal Aging And Death: Understanding The Preston Curve," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 12(3), pages 672-701, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jeurec:v:12:y:2014:i:3:p:672-701
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/jeea.12071
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David E. Bloom & David Canning & Jaypee Sevilla, 2001. "Economic Growth and the Demographic Transition," NBER Working Papers 8685, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • J17 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Value of Life; Foregone Income
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior

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