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Population and technological innovation: the optimal interaction across modern countries

Mario Coccia ()

CERIS Working Paper from Institute for Economic Research on Firms and Growth - Moncalieri (TO) ITALY -NOW- Research Institute on Sustainable Economic Growth - Moncalieri (TO) ITALY

Abstract: Population growth is one of the major problems facing the world today because it affects the pattern of sustainable economic growth. Theory of endogenous growth shows that total research output increases faster than proportionally with population due to increases in the size of the market, more intensive intellectual contact and greater specialization. The study here analyses the relationship between population growth and level of technological outputs (patent applications of residents), focusing on OECD countries. The study seems to show the existence of an inverted-U shaped curve between the growth rate of population and the patents with an optimal zone in which the average rate of growth of the population (roughly 0.3131%) is likely to be associated to a higher level of technological outputs. The policy implications of the study are that, in average, it is difficult to sustain a optimal level of technological outputs either with a low (lower than 0.2197%) or high (higher than 1.0133%) average growth rate of population (annual). In addition, the estimated relationship of technological outputs vs. population growth tends to be affected by decreasing returns of technological innovation to population growth.

Keywords: Population; Population Growth; Innovation; Technological Change; Demographic Change; Patents; Economic Change (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O33 J10 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 23 pages
Date: 2013-06
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-gro and nep-ino
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