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Age structure effects and growth in the OECD, 1950–1990


Economic growth depends on human resources and human needs. The demographic age structure shapes both of these factors. We study five-year data from the OECD countries 1950–1990 in the framework of an age structure augmented neoclassical growth model with gradual technical adjustment. The model performs well in both pooled and panel estimations. The growth patterns of GDP per worker (labor productivity) in the OECD countries are to a large extent explained by age structure changes. The 50–64 age group has a positive influence, and the group above 65 contributes negatively, while younger age groups have ambiguous effects. However, the mechanism behind these age effects is not yet resolved.

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Received: 16 January 1997/Accepted: 2 July 1998

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Lindh, T., Malmberg, B. Age structure effects and growth in the OECD, 1950–1990. J Popul Econ 12, 431–449 (1999).

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  • JEL classification: J11
  • O40
  • O57
  • Key words: Growth
  • age structure
  • technology barriers
  • human capital