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Population Growth and Technological Change: One Million B.C. to 1990

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  • Michael Kremer

Abstract

The nonrivalry of technology, as modeled in the endogenous growth Uterature, implies that high population spurs technological change. This paper constructs and empirically tests a model of long-run world population growth combining this implication with the Malthusian assumption that technology limits population. The model predicts that over most of history, the growth rate of population will be proportional to its level. Empirical tests support this prediction and show that historically, among societies with no possibility for technological contact, those with larger initial populations have had faster technological change and population growth.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Kremer, 1993. "Population Growth and Technological Change: One Million B.C. to 1990," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 681-716.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:108:y:1993:i:3:p:681-716.
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.2307/2118405
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