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Population Growth and Relative Cohort Size

Population Growth and Relative Cohort Size

Chapter:
(p.35) 1 Population Growth and Relative Cohort Size
Source:
Birth Quake
Author(s):
Diane J. Macunovich
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226500928.003.0003

This chapter presents a discussion of population growth and relative cohort size. It also describes women's changing role in society; immigration or international trade effects (or both); the Vietnam War; and the possibility of asymmetry in relative cohort size effects. Women's responses to changes brought about by fluctuations in relative cohort size have provided a buffer against some of the extremes that might otherwise have occurred. There is a strong effect of both imports and exports on relative wages. Large cohort size did not just result in lower relative wages, but also in higher unemployment and higher incidence of “job mismatch.” Richard Easterlin introduced the concept of relative cohort size, the size of one's birth cohort relative to that of one's parents, and suggested that its effects on individuals might persist throughout their lifetimes.

Keywords:   population growth, relative cohort size, international trade effects, immigration, Vietnam War, women, wages

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