A set of striking facts has been a key motivation for this line of research. For example, the onset of sustained economic growth of a society takes place concurrently with a demographic transition where birth rates and mortality rates drop dramatically. This fact manifests itself in a very tight association between prosperity and various health indicators, and is a strong negative association between income and fertility rates across countries.
Much research has been devoted to obtaining a deeper understanding of the causal mechanisms that give rise to these relationships. To what extent do improvements in population health promote economic growth? And through which channels? How do changes in fertility rates affect economic growth, and vice versa?
The work of HEDG researchers has contributed to this agenda. One research project has studied the effect on increasing life expectancy on economic growth both theoretically and empirically. Another example is a set of research projects that studied how economic growth and the associated structural transformation of economies influence fertility decisions.
Among other things, future research aims at exploring how inequality in life expectancy within a population impacts the economy through decisions about education and retirement.
Please address queries to the researcher responsible for this area: Lars Lønstrup