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Economic Transformation, Population Growth, and the Long-Run World Income Distribution

  • Marcos Chamon
  • Michael Kremer

This paper considers the long-run evolution of the world economy in a model where countries' opportunities to develop depend on their trade with advanced economies. As developing countries become advanced, they further improve trade opportunities for the remaining developing countries. Whether or not the world economy converges to widespread prosperity depends on the population growth differential between developing and advanced economies, the rate at which countries develop, and potentially on initial conditions. A calibration using historical data suggests that the long-run prospects for lagging developing regions, such as Africa, likely hinge on the sufficiently rapid development of China and India.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 06/21.

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Length: 20
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:06/21
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  1. Grossman, Gene M. & Helpman, Elhanan, 1995. "Technology and trade," Handbook of International Economics, in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 25, pages 1279-1337 Elsevier.
  2. Galor, Oded & Weil, David, 1995. "The Gender Gap, Fertility and Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 1157, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  9. Oded Galor & Andrew Mountford, 2008. "Trading Population for Productivity: Theory and Evidence," Working Papers 2008-2, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  10. Robert E. Lucas, 2000. "Some Macroeconomics for the 21st Century," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(1), pages 159-168, Winter.
  11. O Rourke, Kevin H. & Williamson, Jeffrey G., 2002. "When did globalisation begin?," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(01), pages 23-50, April.
  12. Tamura, Robert, 1996. "From decay to growth: A demographic transition to economic growth," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(6-7), pages 1237-1261.
  13. Parente, Stephen L & Prescott, Edward C, 1994. "Barriers to Technology Adoption and Development," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(2), pages 298-321, April.
  14. Jose E. Galdon Sanchez & James A. Schmitz, 2003. "Competitive pressure and labor productivity: world iron ore markets in the 1980s," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Spr, pages 9-23.
  15. Kremer, Michael & Onatski, Alexei & Stock, James, 2001. "Searching for prosperity," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 275-303, December.
  16. Robert E. Lucas, Jr., 2007. "Trade and the Diffusion of the Industrial Revolution," NBER Working Papers 13286, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Oded Galor & Andrew Mountford, 2006. "Trade and the Great Divergence: The Family Connection," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 299-303, May.
  18. David H. Romer & Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1999. "Does Trade Cause Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 379-399, June.
  19. Alwyn Young, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," NBER Working Papers 3577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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