Becker S, Francesco C & Woessmann L (2009) The Trade-off between Fertility and Education: Evidence from before the Demographic Transition. Stirling Economics Discussion Paper, 2009-17.
The trade-off between child quantity and education is a crucial ingredient of unified growth models that explain the transition from Malthusian stagnation to modern growth. We present first evidence that such a trade-off indeed existed before the demographic transition, exploiting a unique census-based dataset of 334 Prussian counties in 1849. Estimating two separate instrumental-variable models that instrument education by landownership inequality and distance to Wittenberg and fertility by previous-generation fertility and sex-imbalance ratio, we find that causation between fertility and education runs both ways. Furthermore, education in 1849 predicts the fertility transition in 1880-1905.
Schooling; fertility transition; unified growth theory; 19th-century Prussia; Birth control Prussia (Germany); Fertility, Human Economic aspects
- I20: Education and Research Institutions: General
- J13: Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
- N33: Economic History: Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy: Europe: Pre-1913
|Title of series||Stirling Economics Discussion Paper|
|Number in series||2009-17|
|Publication date online||01/08/2009|