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The Race between Population and Technology : Real Wages in the First Industrial Revolution

Author

Listed:
  • Crafts, Nicholas

    (University of Sussex)

  • Mills, Terence C.

    (Loughborough University)

Abstract

We investigate a structural model of demographic-economic interactions for England during 1570 to 1850. We estimate that the annual rate of population growth consistent with constant real wages was 0.4 per cent before 1760 but 1.5 per cent thereafter. We find that exogenous shocks increased population growth dramatically in the early decades of the Industrial Revolution. Simulations of our model show that if these demographic shocks had occurred before the Industrial Revolution the impact on real wages would have been catastrophic and that these shocks were largely responsible for very slow growth of real wages during the Industrial Revolution.

Suggested Citation

  • Crafts, Nicholas & Mills, Terence C., 2020. "The Race between Population and Technology : Real Wages in the First Industrial Revolution," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 1298, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:wrk:warwec:1298
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    epidemic disease ; Industrial Revolution ; Malthusian checks ; nuptiality ; population growth ; real wages ; technological progress JEL codes: N13 ; N33;

    JEL classification:

    • N13 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - Europe: Pre-1913

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