Education and Fertility: Panel Time-Series Evidence from Southern Africa

Working paper 431
Author(s): 
Manoel Bittencourt
Publication date: 
May, 2014
Classification-JEL: 

In this paper I investigate whether secondary school enrollment has played any role on total fertility rates in all …fifteen countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) between 1980 and 2009. The evidence, based on panel time-series analysis (I make use of
the Pooled OLS, Fixed Effects, Common Correlated Effects and Fixed Effects with Instrumental Variables estimators), robustly suggest that education has reduced fertility rates in the community, or that the community is already trading-o¤ quantity for quality of children. The
results are important because lower fertility, caused by education, implies more capital per worker, higher productivity and therefore higher growth rates, and also because— in accordance to the uni…ed growth theory— they suggest that southern Africa is experiencing its own transition from the Malthusian regime into sustained modern growth.

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