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The Expansion of the Commercial Sector and the Child Quantity-Quality Transition in a Malthusian World

Author

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  • Ken Tabata

    () (School of Economics, Kwansei Gakuin University)

Abstract

This paper constructs a simple Malthusian model to explain per capita income differences in the Malthusian era by focusing on regional variations in the expansion of the commercial sector. This paper shows that a larger productivity improvement in the skilled intensive commercial sector relative to the improvement in the unskilled intensive agricultural sector causes a higher per capita income in the Malthusian steady-state equilibrium by enhancing the child quantity-quality transition. From the late Middle Ages, Northwestern Europe (Britain and the Netherlands) was characterized by dramatic growth of both the commercial sector and urbanization, high literacy rates, and a low-pressure demographic regime, and thus, these regions developed very differently from the rest of Europe. Our results are somewhat consistent with the relevant experiences of Northwestern Europe in the preindustrial era.

Suggested Citation

  • Ken Tabata, 2013. "The Expansion of the Commercial Sector and the Child Quantity-Quality Transition in a Malthusian World," Discussion Paper Series 105, School of Economics, Kwansei Gakuin University, revised May 2013.
  • Handle: RePEc:kgu:wpaper:105
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Marc Klemp & Niels Framroze Møller, 2016. "Post-Malthusian Dynamics in Pre-Industrial Scandinavia," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 118(4), pages 841-867, October.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Commercial Sector; Sectoral Productivity Improvement; Child Quantity-Quality Transition; Malthusian Era;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
    • N10 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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