Population Growth and Educational Policies: An Economic Perspective.

by Dennis N. De Tray

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A review and assessment of several recent micro-economic models of fertility which emphasizes the role of education as an influence on family size, and the applicability of such models to population problems in developing nations. The author concludes that: (1) although our knowledge of the mechanisms through which education influences fertility is incomplete, education is likely to be an effective policy instrument to influence family size in developing nations; (2) policies that directly influence a wife's wages, a couple's contraceptive behavior, and the early health and nutrition of children may be more effective and a quicker means of reducing family size than policies aimed at increasing adult education; and (3) the tradeoff that parents appear to make between the number of children they want and the investments they make in each child may well be an important key to middle- and longer-term population policy in developing nations. 54 pp. Bibliog.

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