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The Effects of Health and Demographic Change on Economic Growth: Integrating Micro and Macro Perspectives, II. Population Growth, Land Fragmentation, and Groundwater

  • 2007-2010
  • Project
Foster, Andrew, Brown University

Study: “The Effects of Health and Demographic Change on Economic Growth: Integrating Micro and Macro Perspectives, II. Population Growth, Land Fragmentation, and Groundwater”
PI(s): Foster, Andrew
Co-PI(s): Wilde, Joshua; Sekhri, Sheetal
Affiliation(s): Brown University
Institutional Partner(s): PRB Center
Project Dates:
Start: 2007
End: 2010
Data Source(s): Panel Data (ARIS-REDS Surveys)
Methods: IV Econometric and Simulation Models
Geographic Location(s): India

Description:
This project is the second subproject of “The Effects of Health and Demographic Change on Economic Growth: Integrating Micro and Macro Perspectives.” The second subproject looks at the ways in which population growth affects economic well-being through changes in the quality and level of environmental resources in India. There are two central features to this argument:

The production and availability of environmental resources is tied to a relatively rigid set of fixed natural factors or processes, and thus is not readily expandable through increases in the size of the workforce. Extraction and use of environmental resources is often difficult to monitor and thus may not be efficiently able to be allocated using normal market mechanism.s

From a longer-term perspective, any constraints on the pricing of environmental resources may lead households to be less sensitive to environmental resource scarcity in terms of their own decisions about childbearing. Findings show that, because of the nature of waterflow in aquifers, larger farmers more adequately internalize the effects of the groundwater extraction than do small farmers and use substantially less labor per acre. This study attempts to address the need of policy interventions that are most effective in terms of increasing the efficiency of natural resources use. This project focuses on developing and testing an appropriate set of theoretical frameworks that can be used to study alternative policy choices.

Research Outputs:

Foster, Andrew, & Rosenzweig, Mark. (2011). Are Indian farms too small? Mechanization, agency costs, and farm efficiency. Economic Growth Center, Yale University New Haven CT.

Foster, Andrew, & Sekhri, Sheetal. (2008).Can Expansion of Markets for Groundwater Decelerate the Depletion of Groundwater Resource in Rural India? Brown University, Providence RI.

Sekhri, Sheetal. (2011). Public Provision and Protection of Natural Resources: Groundwater Irrigation in Rural India. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, 3, 29-55.

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