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East Asian Economic Development: Two Demographic Dividends


  • Andrew Mason

    () (University of Hawaii at Manoa and East-West Center)

  • Tomoko Kinugasa

    (Kobe University and University of Hawaii)


The important of the demographic dividend to East Asian economic growth is now widely recognized. During the last four decades of the 20th Century the working age populations grew much more rapidly than the dependent populations fueling growth in per capita income. Over the coming decades, however, demographic change is seemingly unfavorable. In the coming decades the working-age populations of many countries will grow more slowly than dependent populations because of rapid growth of the elderly. Thus, the demographic dividend will be undone. The thesis advanced in this presentation, however, is that appropriate economic policy could produce a second demographic dividend - one that is as great or greater than the first dividend and one that may last indefinitely. Contrary to popular wisdom, population aging may prove to be the source of stronger economic growth and greater prosperity in East Asia.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew Mason & Tomoko Kinugasa, 2005. "East Asian Economic Development: Two Demographic Dividends," Economics Study Area Working Papers 83, East-West Center, Economics Study Area.
  • Handle: RePEc:ewc:wpaper:wp83

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    23. repec:fth:harver:1490 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Cited by:

    1. Williamson, Jeffrey G, 2013. "Demographic Dividends Revisited," CEPR Discussion Papers 9390, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Hickson, Kerry Jane, 2009. "The contribution of increased life expectancy to economic development in twentieth century Japan," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 489-504, September.
    3. Laishram Ladusingh & M.R. Narayana, 2012. "Demographic dividends for India: evidence and implications based on National Transfer Accounts," Chapters,in: Aging, Economic Growth, and Old-Age Security in Asia, chapter 7, pages 203-230 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. Ahmed, S. Amer & Vargas Da Cruz,Marcio Jose & Quillin,Bryce Ramsey & Schellekens,Philip, 2016. "Demographic change and development : a global typology," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7893, The World Bank.
    5. Jeffrey G. Williamson, 2013. "Demographic Dividends Revisited," Asian Development Review, MIT Press, vol. 30(2), pages 1-25, September.
    6. Hajamini, Mehdi, 2015. "The non-linear effect of population growth and linear effect of age structure on per capita income: A threshold dynamic panel structural model," Economic Analysis and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 43-58.
    7. Esso, Loesse Jacques, 2009. "La dépendance démographique est-elle un obstacle à l’épargne et à la croissance en Côte d’Ivoire?," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 85(4), pages 361-382, décembre.
    8. repec:eee:joecag:v:8:y:2016:i:c:p:28-41 is not listed on IDEAS

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    JEL classification:

    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • E1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models
    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment

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