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Economic Growth And Evolution: Parental Preference For Quality And Quantity Of Offspring

  • Jason Collins

    (UWA Business School, The University of Western Australia)

  • Boris Baer

    (Plant Energy Biology ARC Centre of Excellence, The University of Western Australia)

  • Ernst Juerg Weber

    (UWA Business School, The University of Western Australia)

This paper presents a quantitative analysis of the model developed in Galor and Moav, Natural Selection and the Origin of Economic Growth (2002), in which agents vary genetically in their preference for quality and quantity of children. We simulate a parametric form of the model, enabling examination of the transition from Malthusian stagnation to modern rates of economic growth. The simulations allow an assessment of the strength of the biological foundations of the model and demonstrate the susceptibility of the modern high-growth state to invasion by cheaters. Extending the model from two to three genotypes suggests the possibility of a return to Malthusian conditions rather than a permanent state of modern growth.

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File URL: http://www.business.uwa.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/1627326/11--5-Economic-Growth-and-Evolution-Parental-Preference-for-Quality-and-Quantity-of-Offspring.pdf
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Paper provided by The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics in its series Economics Discussion / Working Papers with number 11-05.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uwa:wpaper:11-05
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  1. Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2009. "The Diffusion of Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(2), pages 469-529.
  2. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2002. "Natural Selection and the Origin of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1133-1191.
  3. David N. Weil & Oded Galor, 2000. "Population, Technology, and Growth: From Malthusian Stagnation to the Demographic Transition and Beyond," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 806-828, September.
  4. Gregory Clark, 2009. "The Macroeconomic Aggregates for England, 1209-2008," Working Papers 919, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  5. Sascha Becker & Francesco Cinnirella & Ludger Woessmann, 2010. "The trade-off between fertility and education: evidence from before the demographic transition," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 177-204, September.
  6. Oded Galor & Stelios Michalopoulos, 2011. "Evolution and the Growth Process: Natural Selection of Entrepreneurial Traits," NBER Working Papers 17075, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy & Robert Tamura, 1994. "Human Capital, Fertility, and Economic Growth," NBER Chapters, in: Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis with Special Reference to Education (3rd Edition), pages 323-350 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Gregory Clark & Neil Cummins, 2009. "Urbanization, Mortality, and Fertility in Malthusian England," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 242-47, May.
  9. Gregory Clark & Neil Cummins, 2010. "Malthus to Modernity: England?s First Fertility Transition, 1760-1800," Working Papers 1013, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  10. Nick Netzer, 2008. "Evolution of Time Preferences and Attitudes Towards Risk," TWI Research Paper Series 29, Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universit�t Konstanz.
  11. Larry Samuelson & Arthur J. Robson, 2007. "The Evolution of Intertemporal Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 496-500, May.
  12. Quamrul Ashraf & Oded Galor, 2008. "Human Genetic Diversity and Comparative Economic Development," 2008 Meeting Papers 617, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Gregory Clark, 2005. "The Condition of the Working-Class in England, 1209-2004," Working Papers 539, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  14. Hirshleifer, Jack, 1977. "Economics from a Biological Viewpoint," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(1), pages 1-52, April.
  15. Jack Hirshleifer, 1977. "Economics from a Biological Viewpoint," UCLA Economics Working Papers 087, UCLA Department of Economics.
  16. Clark, Gregory & Hamilton, Gillian, 2006. "Survival of the Richest: The Malthusian Mechanism in Pre-Industrial England," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 66(03), pages 707-736, September.
  17. Quamrul Ashraf & Oded Galor, 2010. "The "Out of Africa" Hypothesis, Human Genetic Diversity, and Comparative Economic Development," Center for Development Economics 2010-03, Department of Economics, Williams College, revised Dec 2012.
  18. Rogers, Alan R, 1994. "Evolution of Time Preference by Natural Selection," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 460-81, June.
  19. Rubin, Paul H & Paul, Chris W, II, 1979. "An Evolutionary Model of Taste for Risk," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 17(4), pages 585-96, October.
  20. Hansson, Ingemar & Stuart, Charles, 1990. "Malthusian Selection of Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 529-44, June.
  21. Arthur J. Robson & Balazs Szentes, 2008. "Evolution of Time Preference by Natural Selection: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 1178-88, June.
  22. Theodore W. Schultz, 1974. "Economics of the Family: Marriage, Children, and Human Capital," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number schu74-1, Jan-Jun.
  23. George B. Roberts, Chairman, Universities-National Bureau Committee for Economic Research, 1960. "Demographic and Economic Change in Developed Countries," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number univ60-2, Jan-Jun.
  24. Nils-Petter Lagerlöf, 2006. "The Galor-Weil Model Revisited: A Quantitative Exercise," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 9(1), pages 116-142, January.
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