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Inverted Easterlin Fertility Cycles and Kornai's "Soft" Budget Constraint

Elwood Carlson
Population and Development Review
Vol. 18, No. 4 (Dec., 1992), pp. 669-688
Published by: Population Council
DOI: 10.2307/1973759
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1973759
Page Count: 20
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Inverted Easterlin Fertility Cycles and Kornai's "Soft" Budget Constraint
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Abstract

Richard Easterlin's baseline model of self-reinforcing fertility cycles applies to systems with open, competitive labor markets and an insignificant volume of international migration. This analysis examines what happens in circumstances where such a labor market is replaced by a centrally planned economy and state guarantees of full employment. The conclusion, foreshadowed by the theoretical writings of Janos Kornai, appears to be that fertility varies directly with parents' cohort size, a relationship just the inverse of the more familiar pattern observed in some Western societies.

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