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Demographic Change and R&D-based Economic Growth: Reconciling Theory and Evidence

  • Klaus Prettner
  • Timo Trimborn

We analyze the effects of demographic change on medium- and long-run economic growth by setting forth an R&D-based growth model including an endogenous demographic structure. The model framework is consistent with the experience of industrialized countries, where declines in mortality are associated with even faster declines in fertility such that population growth slows down. We show that, in response to demographic change, technological progress and economic growth accelerate in the medium run but slow down in the long run. Numerical investigation reveals that the time period during which technological progress and economic growth are faster than without demographic change can be very long. Since the theoretical predictions for the medium run are consistent with the negative association between population growth and economic growth found in the empirical literature, the present framework can reconcile R&D-based growth theory with the available evidence.

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Paper provided by DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade in its series DEGIT Conference Papers with number c017_006.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:deg:conpap:c017_006
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  12. Strulik, Holger & Prettner, Klaus & Prskawetz, Alexia, 2010. "R\&D-based Growth in the Post-modern Era," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-457, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
  13. Ben S. Bernanke & Refet S. Gürkaynak, 2002. "Is Growth Exogenous? Taking Mankiw, Romer, and Weil Seriously," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2001, Volume 16, pages 11-72 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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