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Life expectancy and economic growth: the role of the demographic transition

  • Matteo Cervellati

    ()

  • Uwe Sunde

    ()

This paper investigates the hypothesis that the causal effect of life expectancy on income per capita growth is non-monotonic. This hypothesis follows from the recent literature on unified growth, in which the demographic transition represents an important turning point for population dynamics and hence plays a central role for the transition from stagnation to growth. Results from different empirical specifications and identification strategies document that the effect is non-monotonic, negative (but often insignificant) before the onset of the demographic transition, but strongly positive after its onset. The results provide a new interpretation of the contradictory existing evidence and have relevant policy implications.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10887-011-9065-2
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Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Economic Growth.

Volume (Year): 16 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 99-133

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Handle: RePEc:kap:jecgro:v:16:y:2011:i:2:p:99-133
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