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Longevity-induced vertical innovation and the tradeoff between life and growth

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  • Baldanzi, Annarita
  • Prettner, Klaus
  • Tscheuschner, Paul

Abstract

We analyze the economic growth effects of rising longevity in a framework of endogenous growth driven by quality-improving innovations. We show that a rise in longevity raises savings and thereby reduces the market interest rate. Since the monopoly profits generated by a successful innovation are discounted by the endogenous market interest rate, this raises the net present value of innovations, which, in turn, fosters R&D. The associated increase in the employment of scientists leads to faster technological progress and a higher long-run economic growth rate. From a welfare perspective, we show that the direct effect of an increase in life expectancy on lifetime utility is much larger than the indirect effect of the induced higher consumption due to faster economic growth. Consequently, the debate on rising health care expenditures should not predominantly be based on the growth effects of health care.

Suggested Citation

  • Baldanzi, Annarita & Prettner, Klaus & Tscheuschner, Paul, 2017. "Longevity-induced vertical innovation and the tradeoff between life and growth," Hohenheim Discussion Papers in Business, Economics and Social Sciences 31-2017, University of Hohenheim, Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:hohdps:312017
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    Cited by:

    1. Kuhn, Michael & Prettner, Klaus, 2020. "Rising longevity, increasing the retirement age, and the consequences for knowledge-based long-run growth," Hohenheim Discussion Papers in Business, Economics and Social Sciences 02-2020, University of Hohenheim, Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences.
    2. Stähler, Nikolai, 2021. "The Impact of Aging and Automation on the Macroeconomy and Inequality," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 67(C).
    3. Lehmann-Hasemeyer, Sibylle H. & Prettner, Klaus & Tscheuschner, Paul, 2020. "The scientific revolution and its role in the transition to sustained economic growth," Hohenheim Discussion Papers in Business, Economics and Social Sciences 06-2020, University of Hohenheim, Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences.
    4. Zhang, Xiaomeng & Palivos, Theodore & Liu, Xiangbo, 2021. "Aging and Automation in Economies with Search Frictions," MPRA Paper 107950, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Chen, Simiao & Jin, Zhangfeng & Prettner, Klaus, 2020. "Can I live with you after I retire? Retirement, old age support, and internal migration of older adults in China," Department of Economics Working Paper Series 303, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    6. Tscheuschner, Paul, 2021. "Endogenous life expectancy and R&D-based economic growth," Hohenheim Discussion Papers in Business, Economics and Social Sciences 01-2021, University of Hohenheim, Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences.
    7. Colin Davis & Ken-ichi Hashimoto & Ken Tabata, 2020. "Demographic Structure, Knowledge Diffusion, and Endogenous Productivity Growth," ISER Discussion Paper 1113, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    long-run growth; vertical innovation; increasing life expectancy; welfare effects of changing longevity; size of health-care sectors;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J11 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Demographic Trends, Macroeconomic Effects, and Forecasts
    • J17 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Value of Life; Foregone Income
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models

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