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Old Habits Die Hard (Sometimes) Can département heterogeneity tell us something about the French fertility decline??

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  • Tommy E. Murphy

Abstract

Recent developments in endogenous growth theory suggest fertility decline in the context of the demographic transition was crucial for achieving long-term growth, and that it was triggered by forces eminently economic in nature. It is then somewhat puzzling that France, which was not as industrialised as other parts of Europe, lead that decline. Taking advantage of the considerable internal heterogeneity, this paper looks within France for some answers. Using département level data for the last quarter of the nineteenth century, it studies the correlates of fertility estimating a 2SLS fixed-effects model. Results confirm the importance of some of the forces suggested by standard fertility choice models. Nevertheless, certain non-economic factors (such as secularisation) –for which I provide new measurements– also explain part of the variation. Spatial dependence turns out as well to be significant in all specifications of the model, suggesting some sort of diffusion was indeed taking place.

Suggested Citation

  • Tommy E. Murphy, 2010. "Old Habits Die Hard (Sometimes) Can département heterogeneity tell us something about the French fertility decline??," Working Papers 364, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  • Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:364
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    Cited by:

    1. Duarte Nuno Leite & Óscar Afonso & Sandra Tavares Silva, 2015. "The Two Revolutions, Landed Elites and Education during the Industrial Revolution," FEP Working Papers 562, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
    2. Oded Galor, 2012. "The demographic transition: causes and consequences," Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 6(1), pages 1-28, January.
    3. Nico Voigtl?nder & Hans-Joachim Voth, 2013. "How the West "Invented" Fertility Restriction," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(6), pages 2227-2264, October.
    4. Mara P. Squicciarini & Nico Voigtländer, 2015. "Human Capital and Industrialization: Evidence from the Age of Enlightenment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 130(4), pages 1825-1883.
    5. Cahu, Paul & Fall, Falilou & Pongou, Roland, 2014. "Beauty, Polygyny, and Fertility: Theory and Evidence," MPRA Paper 59009, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Jun, Bogang, 2013. "The Trade-off between Fertility and Education: Evidence from the Korean Development Path," MPRA Paper 43971, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Casey, Gregory & Galor, Oded, 2014. "Population Dynamics and Long-Run Economic Growth," MPRA Paper 62598, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Casper Worm Hansen & Peter Sandholt Jensen & Lars Lønstrup, 2014. "The Fertility Transition in the US: Schooling or Income?," Economics Working Papers 2014-02, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    9. Claude Diebolt & Audrey-Rose Menard & Faustine Perrin, 2016. "Behind the Fertility-Education Nexus: What Triggered the French Development Process?," Working Papers of BETA 2016-10, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
    10. Timothy W. Guinnane, 2011. "The Historical Fertility Transition: A Guide for Economists," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 49(3), pages 589-614, September.
    11. repec:kap:jecgro:v:22:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s10887-017-9141-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Guillaume Daudin & Raphaël Franck & Hillel Rapoport, 2016. "The cultural diffusion of the fertility transition: evidence from internal migration in 19 th century France," PSE - G-MOND WORKING PAPERS halshs-01321952, HAL.
    13. Shin, Inyong, 2013. "The Effect of Compressed Demographic Transition and Demographic Gift on Economic Growth," MPRA Paper 45003, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Ager, Philipp & Worm Hansen, Casper & Sandholt Jensen, Peter, 2014. "Fertility and early-life mortality: Evidence from smallpox vaccination in Sweden," MPRA Paper 57650, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    15. Carolyn Chisadza & Manoel Bittencourt, 2015. "Education and Fertility: Panel Evidence from sub-Saharan Africa," Working Papers 201526, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
    16. David Cuberes & Alberto Basso, 2012. "Human Capital, Culture and the Onset of the Demographic Transition," Working Papers 2012024, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics.
    17. Sandra González-Bailón & Tommy E. Murphy, 2011. "Social Interactions and Long-Term Fertility Dynamics.A Simulation Experiment in the Context of the French Fertility Decline," Working Papers 419, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    18. Alberto Basso & David Cuberes Vilalta, 2011. "Institutions, culture and the onset of the demographic transition," Working Papers. Serie AD 2011-13, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
    19. Joshua R. Goldstein & Sebastian Klüsener, 2014. "Spatial Analysis of the Causes of Fertility Decline in Prussia," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 40(3), pages 497-525, September.

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