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Development, Fertility and Childbearing Age: A Unified Growth Theory

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  • Hippolyte d'Albis

    () (PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, PSE - Paris School of Economics)

  • Angela Greulich

    () (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, INED - Institut national d'études démographiques)

  • Grégory Ponthière

    (PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, ERUDITE - Equipe de Recherche sur l’Utilisation des Données Individuelles en lien avec la Théorie Economique - UPEM - Université Paris-Est Marne-la-Vallée - UPEC UP12 - Université Paris-Est Créteil Val-de-Marne - Paris 12)

Abstract

During the last century, fertility has exhibited, in industrialized economies, two distinct trends: the cohort total fertility rate follows a decreasing pattern, while the cohort average age at motherhood exhibits a U-shaped pattern. This paper proposes a Unified Growth Theory aimed at rationalizing those two demographic stylized facts. We develop a three-period OLG model with two periods of fertility, and show how a traditional economy, where individuals do not invest in education, and where income rises push towards advancing births, can progressively converge towards a modern economy, where individuals invest in education, and where income rises encourage postponing births. Our findings are illustrated numerically by replicating the dynamics of the quantum and the tempo of births for cohorts 1906-1975 of the Human Fertility Database.

Suggested Citation

  • Hippolyte d'Albis & Angela Greulich & Grégory Ponthière, 2018. "Development, Fertility and Childbearing Age: A Unified Growth Theory," PSE Working Papers halshs-01848098, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-01848098
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01848098
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    1. repec:spr:cliomt:v:13:y:2019:i:1:d:10.1007_s11698-017-0166-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:afc:cliome:v:13:y:2019:i:1:p:25-54 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Sandra Brée & David de la Croix, 2019. "Key forces behind the decline of fertility: lessons from childlessness in Rouen before the industrial revolution," Cliometrica, Springer;Cliometric Society (Association Francaise de Cliométrie), vol. 13(1), pages 25-54, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    regime shift; fertility; childbearing age; births postponement; human capital;

    JEL classification:

    • J11 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Demographic Trends, Macroeconomic Effects, and Forecasts
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development

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