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The relationship between fertility and the levels of economic development

Published under category: Essay Writing Tips | 2015-02-18 15:54:01 UTC

Context: Economics and sociology

Fertility essays are some off the most written custom paper writings on assignment writing websites. Papers of the relationship between fertility and development are common on writing websites. However, there is need for a student looking for a writing website to complete an essay on development to select legitimate online writing services company. This is especially so if the said student is a native English speaker. The following is a brief on fertility and level of development. A relationship between economic growth and fertility exists; but discussion are still ongoing on the ways to which fertility corresponds to the levels of economic growth that is being experienced in different countries. There are opinions that suggest that an increase in population goes hand in hand with an increase in the economic development. There are other opinions that suggest a huge population does not favor economic growth while others also suggest that a small population does not sustain economic growth. Therefore, despite the relationship that exists between population and economic development, it is technical to determine the exact population that results in economic growth. However, the different levels of economic growth that have been experienced in different countries suggest that there is a relationship between fertility and the levels of economic growth. The relationship is a result of not only economic factors, but also other factors that include religion and culture. Economic development and fertility The economic levels of growth of the world regions and the variations in fertility are highly interconnected. The relationship between economic growth and fertility is two-way, which makes it difficult to exactly state a clear impact that each variable has on the other. It is, therefore, important when examining the relationship between economic growth and the population to also consider the inverse effects that economic growth has on population. Different arguments have been presented on how fertility impact on economic growth. The study of neoclassical growth models indicates that fertility impacts negatively on the economic outcomes. However, the current endogenous growth models show that fertility has a positive outcome. Earlier opinions were based on the Malthusian argument that stated that an increased fertility resulted in poverty as a result of the fixed nature of the natural resources. A growth model by Solow, known as “exogenous” growth model also argued that an increase in population lead to resulted in the “dilution” of physical capital. This was based on the assumption that capital supply is fixed while the return of labor diminished. Other models have made the assumption that a reduced family size leads to an increment in private savings, and in turn gives opportunity to households to channel most of their investments on the children. This results in a more productive labor force hence economic growth. It has also been argued that reduced fertility allows women to take part in the labor force. The participation of women in the labor force benefits a country as there is increased labor force. There is also an increased rate of investment in children, which in turn benefits the economy. Decrease in fertility rates has been seen to result in an increase in economic growth since dependency rates on youths is lowered leading to a relative increase in the working age of people in population. This change results in increased output per capita, hence per capita income. However, a decrease in fertility levels will eventually lead to reduced working age population. The country’s labor force will be reduced resulting in the increased old-age dependency rates. Therefore, the long term impact of reduced fertility on economy may become negative. The endogenous growth theory shows that increased fertility impacts positively on the economy. It defines technical advancement, innovations and human capital as important elements of population growth. Therefore, the theory emphasizes that population growth is vital to economic growth of the country. Increase in the number of population results in an increase labor force. The economy, therefore, has a talent pool from which it can get workers to participate in the development. In addition, increased population boosts innovations, knowledge exchange and technology transfer, which encourage productivity hence income growth. Based on this argument, having an aging population is a high risk since there will be a decreased labor growth and productivity. Technical innovations are mainly driven by the younger generations. A decreased fertility results in high old-age dependency ratios as a result of pension and health expenditures. This comes at the expense of research, education and development investments. On the other hand, economic growth can either impact negatively or positively on the fertility ratios. An increased income per capita may result in an increased demand for children as a result of the increased capability of households to provide for their children. In the modern world, most households place quality higher in the scale rather than quantity. The parents focus more on giving their children “quality” rather than having more children in order to increase their chances. Quality living standards and quality education per child have reduced the need to have many children. The increased women participation in education has resulted in more women taking part in the labor force. The increased high earning potential that comes with high education attainment encourages more women to look for jobs as opposed to taking care of children. It can be concluded, therefore, that increased opportunity cost combined with a focus on child quality are economic factors that have contributed to decreased fertility rates in most populations. Non-economic factors that affect fertility Despite the relationship between fertility and economic growth, the correspondence is not only as a result of economic factors. There are non-economic factors that result in either increased fertility or decreased fertility. These non-economic factors include religion and cultural factors. Different populations have different religions and cultural set ups that will influence their fertility. There are various religions in the world that have their own principles. The differences in doctrinal teachings influence the fertility of the population. In traditional African religion, polygamous marriages are allowed. This in turn raises the fertility level as one man can sire a number of children simultaneously with different women. In Islam, men are also allowed to have polygamous families. This is opposed to Christian marriages that restrict one man to one woman. In Catholic denomination, there has been an insistence on families to give birth to as many children as possible. Christianity encourages its followers to have as many children as possible since God commanded human beings to fill the earth. Religion, therefore, can result in an increase or reduction in productivity. The cultural factors that affect the rate of fertility are numerous. For example, the age at which one gets married, the number of spouses a man is allowed to marry and the sex preferred by the community. Many African communities do give value to the education of female children. Therefore, female children get married as early as when they are 12 years old. The African culture also encourages households to sire many children since they are viewed as wealth. The fertility level of traditional African household is, therefore, high. Most African communities also have a preference for male children. A family will, therefore, give birth to many children to increase chances of having many male children. This is opposed to many western countries that prefer to have up to three children only. The western countries’ households do not have a preference; they will have a child of any sex. Conclusion The spatial variations in fertility that exist today correspond to spatial levels of economic development, but apart from economic factors, there are non-economic factors like religion and culture that impact on the fertility levels. As a result, fertility rates should not be viewed only in terms of economic factors. ORDER PLAGIARISM FREE PAPER


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