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Population and Ideas: A Theory of Endogenous Growth

  • Charles I. Jones

Why do economies exhibit sustained growth in per capita income? This paper argues that endogenous fertility and increasing returns to scale are the fundamental ingredients in understanding endogenous growth. Endogenous fertility leads the scale of the economy to grow over time. Increasing returns translates this increase in scale into rising per capita income. A justification for increasing returns rather than linearity in the equation for technological progress is the fundamental insight of the idea-based growth literature according to this view. Endogenous fertility together with the increasing returns associated with the nonrivalry of ideas generates endogenous growth.

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Paper provided by Stanford University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 97018.

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Handle: RePEc:wop:stanec:97018
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  1. Oded Galor & David N. Weil, 1993. "The Gender Gap, Fertility, and Growth," NBER Working Papers 4550, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Aghion, P. & Howitt, P., 1989. "A Model Of Growth Through Creative Destruction," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 8904, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
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  4. Sergio Rebelo, 1999. "Long Run Policy Analysis and Long Run Growth," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2114, David K. Levine.
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  8. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 407-437.
  9. Gary S. Becker & Robert J. Barro, 1988. "A Reformulation of the Economic Theory of Fertility," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 103(1), pages 1-25.
  10. Edmond S. Phelps, 1964. "Models of Technical Progress and the Golden Rule of Research," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 176, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  11. Nordhaus, William D, 1969. "An Economic Theory of Technological Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(2), pages 18-28, May.
  12. Gary S. Becker & Robert J. Barro, . "A Reformulation of the Economic Theory of Fertility," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 85-11, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  13. Raut, L K & Srinivasan, T N, 1994. "Dynamics of Endogenous Growth," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 4(5), pages 777-90, August.
  14. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Scholarly Articles 12490578, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Pitchford, John, 1972. "Population and Optimal Growth," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 40(1), pages 109-36, January.
  16. Karl Shell, 2010. "A Model of Inventive Activity and Capital Accumulation," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1409, David K. Levine.
  17. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  18. Paul M. Romer, 1987. "Crazy Explanations for the Productivity Slowdown," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1987, Volume 2, pages 163-210 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Alwyn Young, 1998. "Growth without Scale Effects," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(1), pages 41-63, February.
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