Population Growth, Economic Growth, and Future Requirements for Public Assistance.

by David H. Greenberg, L. H. Heiser

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An assessment of the probable need for public assistance over the next three decades and an analysis of how this need will differ under different rates of population growth and of economic growth. Results suggest that poverty is considerably more resistant to economic growth than might be suspected. If poverty is to be eliminated by the year 2000, economic growth must be accompanied by policies that redistribute income toward the lowest income classes. Also, the aggregate needs of the poor are relatively insensitive to very different rates of population growth. With a slow rate of population growth, public assistance requirements will be insignificantly less than requirements will be with a rapid rate of growth. This conclusion holds even when a situation where all unwanted fertility among the poor is eliminated by the year 2000 is compared with the case where unwanted fertility remains at present-day levels. 33 pp.

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