Working Paper BETA #2016-10

Download working-paper

Title : Behind the Fertility-Education Nexus: What Triggered the French Development Process?

Author(s) : Claude Diebolt, Audrey-Rose Menard, Faustine Perrin

Abstract : The education-fertility relationship is a central element of the models explaining the transition to sustained economic growth. In this paper, we use a three-stages least squares estimator to disentangle the causality direction of this relationship. Controlling for a wide array of socio-economic, cultural, and geographical determinants, our cliometric contribution on French counties during the nineteenth century corroborates the existence of a single negative causal link from fertility to education. We put forward the hypothesis that in France a decrease in fertility is strongly associated to greater schooling.

Key-words : Education, Family, Fertility, Growth Theory, Nineteenth-Century, France.

JEL Classification : N33, O10, I25, J13.