The Emergence of the Child Quantity-Quality Tradeoff - insights from early modern academics
Thomas Baudin and
David de la Croix
No 2023015, LIDAM Discussion Papers IRES from Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES)
We examine the relationship between family size and human capital among academics in Northern Europe over the two centuries prior to the Industrial Revolution. To measure scholars' human capital, we develop a novel and consistent approach based on their publications. We find that scholars with a high number of publications shifted from having more siblings to having fewer than others during the first half of the 18th century. This shift is consistent with an evolutionary growth model in which the initial Malthusian constraint leads the high human capital families to reproduce more, before being endogenously substituted by a Beckerian constraint with a child quality-quantity tradeoff. Our results support a reinterpretation of the Galor and Moav (2002)'s approach, in which the decline of Malthusian constraints is linked to human capital accumulation during the 18th century.
Keywords: Fertility; Human Capital; Premodern Europe; Universities; Academies; Evolution; Natural Selection; Malthusian Stagnation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J11 J13 N13 N33 O11 O40 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dem, nep-evo, nep-gro, nep-his and nep-lab
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:ctl:louvir:2023015
Access Statistics for this paper
More papers in LIDAM Discussion Papers IRES from Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) Place Montesquieu 3, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium). Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Virginie LEBLANC ().