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The Cultural Diffusion of the Fertility Transition: Evidence from Internal Migration in 19th Century France

Author

Listed:
  • Guillaume Daudin

    (LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Université Paris Dauphine-PSL - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres)

  • Raphaël Franck

    (Bar-Ilan University [Israël])

  • Hillel Rapoport

    (UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne)

Abstract

France experienced the demographic transition before richer and more educated countries. This paper offers a novel explanation for this puzzle that emphasizes the diffusion of culture and information through internal migration. It tests how migration affected fertility by building a decennial bilateral migration matrix between French regions for 1861-1911. The identification strategy uses exogenous variation in transportation costs resulting from the construction of railways. The results suggest the convergence towards low birth rates can be explained by the diffusion of low-fertility norms by migrants, especially by migrants to and from Paris.

Suggested Citation

  • Guillaume Daudin & Raphaël Franck & Hillel Rapoport, 2016. "The Cultural Diffusion of the Fertility Transition: Evidence from Internal Migration in 19th Century France," Working Papers hal-01308354, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-01308354
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    Cited by:

    1. Victor Gay, 2017. "The Legacy of the Missing Men: The Long-Run Impact of World War I on Female Labor Force Participation," 2017 Papers pga905, Job Market Papers.
    2. Hillel Rapoport, 2018. "Diaspora externalities: A view from the South," WIDER Working Paper Series 025, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    3. de la Croix, David & Perrin, Faustine, 2018. "How far can economic incentives explain the French fertility and education transition?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 221-245.
    4. Hillel Rapoport, 2017. "Who is Afraid of the Brain Drain? A Development Economist’s View," CEPII Policy Brief 2017-14, CEPII research center.
    5. David de la Croix & Faustine Perrin, 2016. "French Fertility and Education Transition: Rational Choice vs. Cultural Diffusion," LIDAM Discussion Papers IRES 2016007, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    6. Squicciarini, Mara, 2019. "Devotion and Development: Religiosity, Education, and Economic Progress in 19th-Century France," CEPR Discussion Papers 13877, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Emeline Bezin & Bastien Chabé-Ferret & David de la Croix, 2018. "Strategic Fertility, Education Choices and Conflicts in Deeply Divided Societies," LIDAM Discussion Papers IRES 2018011, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    8. Claude Diebolt & Audrey-Rose Menard & Faustine Perrin, 2016. "Behind the Fertility-Education Nexus: What Triggered the French Development Process?," Working Papers 03-16, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC).
    9. Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2022. "Fertility and Modernity [‘The consequences of radical reform: the French revolution’]," The Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 132(642), pages 796-833.
    10. Tommy Murphy, 2015. "Old habits die hard (sometimes)," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 177-222, June.
    11. Ademmer, Esther & Barslund, Mikkel & Benček, David & Di Salvo, Mattia & Groll, Dominik & Hoxhaj, Rezart & Kadkoy, Omar & Lanati, Mauro & Laurentsyeva, Nadzeya & Lücke, Matthias & Ludolph, Lars & Pizzu, 2018. "2018 MEDAM Assessment Report on Asylum and Migration Policies in Europe. Flexible Solidarity: A comprehensive strategy for asylum and immigration in the EU," MEDAM Assessment Report on Asylum and Migration Policies in Europe, Mercator Dialogue on Asylum and Migration (MEDAM), number 182240.
    12. Toman Barsbai & Hillel Rapoport & Andreas Steinmayr & Christoph Trebesch, 2017. "The Effect of Labor Migration on the Diffusion of Democracy: Evidence from a Former Soviet Republic," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(3), pages 36-69, July.
    13. Carlana, Michela & Tabellini, Marco, 2018. "Happily Ever After: Immigration, Natives' Marriage, and Fertility," IZA Discussion Papers 11467, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    14. Andrew Mountford & Hillel Rapoport, 2016. "Migration Policy, African Population Growth and Global Inequality," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(4), pages 543-556, April.
    15. Diebolt, Claude & Mishra, Tapas & Perrin, Faustine, 2021. "Gender empowerment as an enforcer of individuals’ choice between education and fertility: Evidence from 19th century France," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 188(C), pages 408-438.
    16. Hillel Rapoport, 2018. "Diaspora externalities: A view from the South," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2018-25, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    fertility; France; demographic transition; migration;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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