Fertility and Resources: The Household as a Reproductive Unit <sup>1</sup>

Partha Dasgupta

in An Inquiry into Well-Being and Destitution

Published in print June 1995 | ISBN: 9780198288350
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191596094 | DOI:
 Fertility and Resources: The Household as a Reproductive Unit  1

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The main part of this chapter discusses the household as a reproductive unit. It has nine sections: (1) income, fertility, and food – a discussion of the inverse relationship between fertility (and mortality) rates and income, and of population growth in relation to the (finite) environmental resource base; (2) the population growth problem; (3) population externalities: household versus societal reasoning; (4) birth control and female education; (5) children as consumer and insurance goods; (6) environmental degradation, and children as producer goods; (7) some special features of sub‐Saharan Africa; (8) modelling fertility decisions; and (9) allocation failure and public policy. An extra and separate section (designated Chapter *12) gives theoretical presentations on two aspects of strategic complementarities in fertility decisions: (1) atmospheric externalities; and (2) Nash equilibria.

Keywords: birth control; children; education; environmental degradation; externalities; fertility; households; income; Nash equilibrium; population growth; reproduction; resource allocation; sub‐Saharan Africa; sustainability; women

Chapter.  13672 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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