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The Effect of Fertility Reduction on Economic Growth

We assess quantitatively the effect of exogenous reductions in fertility on output per capita. Our simulation model allows for effects that run through schooling, the size and age structure of the population, capital accumulation, parental time input into child-rearing, and crowding of fixed natural resources. The model is parameterized using a combination of microeconomic estimates and standard components of quantitative macroeconomic theory. We apply the model to examine the effect of a change in fertility from the UN medium-variant to the UN low-variant projection in Nigeria. For a base case set of parameters, we find that such a change would raise output per capita by 5.6 percent at a horizon of 20 years, and by 11.9 percent at a horizon of 50 years.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Williams College in its series Center for Development Economics with number 2011-07.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2011
Date of revision: Feb 2013
Publication status: Published in the Population and Development Review, March 2013, 39(1), pp. 97-103.
Handle: RePEc:wil:wilcde:2011-07
Contact details of provider: Postal: Williamstown, MA 01267
Phone: 413 597 2476
Fax: 413 597 4045
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