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Optimal Population in a Finite Horizon


  • Satoshi Nakano
  • Kazuhiko Nishimura


A favorable population schedule for the entire potential human family is sought, under the overlapping generations framework, by treating population (or fertility) as a planning variable in a dynamical social welfare maximization context. The utilitarian and maximin social welfare functions are examined, with zero future discounting, while infinity in the maximand is circumvented by introducing the depletion of energy resources and its postponement through technological innovations. The model is formulated as a free-horizon dynamical planning problem, solved via a non-linear optimizer. Under exploratory scenarios, we visualize the potential trade-offs between the two welfare criteria.

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  • Satoshi Nakano & Kazuhiko Nishimura, 2016. "Optimal Population in a Finite Horizon," Papers 1608.01535,, revised Jan 2018.
  • Handle: RePEc:arx:papers:1608.01535

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gemma Abio, 2003. "Interiority of the optimal population growth rate with endogenous fertility," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 10(4), pages 1-7.
    2. Kaushik Basu & Tapan Mitra, 2003. "Aggregating Infinite Utility Streams with InterGenerational Equity: The Impossibility of Being Paretian," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(5), pages 1557-1563, September.
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