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A Basic Model of Take-Off and Fertility Choices in the Economic Development Process

  • Edgardo Bucciarelli


    (University of Chieti-Pescara, Department of Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory)

  • Gianfranco Giulioni


    (University of Chieti-Pescara, Department of Quantitative Methods and Economic Theory)

We present a simple model in which the transition from Malthusian stagnation to modern growth can occur. Agents are endowed with full control over their fertility but, differently from other studies, the degree of agents’ altruism which mainly affects fertility choices is allowed to change with the standard of living. We relate agents’ altruism to the marginal utility of consumption. The occurrence of take-off and the balanced growth path of the model are analyzed. Our model also provides for a potential explanation to the J-shaped relationship between natality rates and standard of living found by recent empirical studies.

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Article provided by SIPI Spa in its journal Rivista di Politica Economica.

Volume (Year): (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (April-June)
Pages: 125-148

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Handle: RePEc:rpo:ripoec:y:2011:i:2:p:125-148
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  1. Barro, R.J. & Becker, G.S., 1988. "Fertility Choice In A Model Of Economic Growth," University of Chicago - Economics Research Center 88-8, Chicago - Economics Research Center.
  2. Galor, Oded & Weil, David N, 1996. "The Gender Gap, Fertility, and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 374-87, June.
  3. David N. Weil & Oded Galor, 2000. "Population, Technology, and Growth: From Malthusian Stagnation to the Demographic Transition and Beyond," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 806-828, September.
  4. Galor, Oded, 2005. "From Stagnation to Growth: Unified Growth Theory," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 4, pages 171-293 Elsevier.
  5. Avner Ahituv & Joseph Zeira, 2011. "Technical Progress and Early Retirement," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 121(551), pages 171-193, March.
  6. Galor, O. & Tsiddon, D., 1996. "Technological Progress, Mobility and Economic Growth," Papers 13-96, Tel Aviv.
  7. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy & Robert Tamura, . "Human Capital, Fertility, and Economic Growth," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 90-5a, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  8. Strulik, Holger, 1999. "Demographic Transition, Stagnation, and Demoeconomic Cycles in a Model for the Less Developed Economy," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 397-413, April.
  9. A. Prskawetz & G. Steinmann & G. Feichtinger, 2000. "Human capital, technological progress and the demographic transition," Mathematical Population Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 7(4), pages 343-363.
  10. Morand, Olivier F, 1999. " Endogenous Fertility, Income Distribution, and Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 331-49, September.
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