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Is health wealth? Results of a panel data analysis

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  • Dutta, Mousumi
  • Husain, Zakir
  • Chowdhary, Nidhi

Abstract

The objective of this paper is to determine whether health (measured by life expectancy at birth) contributes to economic growth and the functional form in which it influences per capita income. This links our study to the debate between Neo-classical and endogenous growth theorists on whether investment in human capital can sustain growth indefinitely. Data on 216 countries for the period 1980-2009 has been obtained from World Development Indicators dataset. This enables us to focus on a period characterized by globalization and demographic changes manifested in the form of population graying. Our findings confirm the importance of investment in human capital. But, in contrast to conclusions of endogenous growth models, we find evidence that benefit from increasing longevity tapers off. We conclude by pointing out that it is necessary to extend this study further by incorporating other dimensions of health that are not captured by life expectancy.

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  • Dutta, Mousumi & Husain, Zakir & Chowdhary, Nidhi, 2012. "Is health wealth? Results of a panel data analysis," MPRA Paper 39953, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:39953
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    Cited by:

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    2. Talita Greyling & Stephanié Rossouw, 2017. "Non-Economic Quality of Life and Population Density in South Africa," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 134(3), pages 1051-1075, December.
    3. Mohammad Reza Farzanegan, 2021. "Years of Life Lost to Revolution and War in Iran," CESifo Working Paper Series 9063, CESifo.
    4. Kobylinski Katarina & Tyrowicz Joanna, 2018. "On the Relation Between Health and Income: A Cross-Country Analysis," Central European Economic Journal, Sciendo, vol. 5(52), pages 230-243, January.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Life expectancy at birth; endogenous growth models; Neo-classical growth models; panel data; human capital;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C33 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General

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