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The American Frontier: Technology versus Immigration

Author

Listed:
  • Guillaume Vandenbroucke

    (University of Southern California)

Abstract

How important was international immigration for the U.S. and its demography during the nineteenth century? This paper investigates, quantitatively, its effect on the westward movement of population and the regional and secular changes in fertility. Beside immigration, two alternative forces are considered: technological progress and the land policy (the Homestead Act). An optimal growth model with endogenous fertility and migration is calibrated, and counterfactual experiments reveal that the main driving forces were productivity growth and the declining cost of transportation. International immigration played a lesser role. (Copyright: Elsevier)

Suggested Citation

  • Guillaume Vandenbroucke, 2008. "The American Frontier: Technology versus Immigration," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(2), pages 283-301, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:issued:06-113
    DOI: 10.1016/j.red.2007.07.001
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.red.2007.07.001
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    2. Jeremy Greenwood & Nezih Guner & Karen A. Kopecky, 2019. "The Wife's Protector: A Quantitative Theory Linking Contraceptive Technology with the Decline in Marriage," Working Papers wp2019_1912, CEMFI.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Population growth; Migration; Fertility; Technological progress; US westward expansion;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development

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