Population and Agricultural Development
Thinking about population as a driver of agricultural development provides insights into induced technical and institutional change, whether it be Esther Boserup's declining fallow period, modern crop varieties, or the specialization pyramid that arises in labor-intensive agriculture. The non-convexities of research and development, infrastructure investments, and specialization imply that modest population pressure does not necessarily exert downward pressure on wages. As agricultural growth stimulates industrialization, the non-convexities of specialization become ever more compact. The combination of these and the increased demand for human capital, if not inhibited by policy failures, tends to promote a virtuous circle of human progress.
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