Human Genetic Diversity and Comparative Economic Development
Williams College - Department of Economics
Brown University - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, Department of Economics
CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP6824
This research contributes to the understanding of human genetic diversity within a society as a significant determinant of its economic development. The hypothesis advanced and empirically examined in this paper suggests that there are socioeconomic trade-offs associated with genetic diversity within a given society. The investigation exploits an exogenous source of cross-country variation in genetic diversity by appealing to the "out of Africa" hypothesis of human origins to empirically establish a highly statistically significant and robust non-monotonic effect of genetic diversity on development outcomes in the pre-colonial era. Contrary to theories that reject a possible role for human genetics in influencing economic development, this study demonstrates the economic significance of diversity in genetic traits, while abstaining entirely from conceptual frameworks that posit a hierarchy of such traits in terms of their conduciveness to the process of economic development.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 58
Keywords: Comparative development, Human genetic diversity, Land productivity, Malthusian stagnation, Neolithic Revolution, Population density
JEL Classification: N10, N30, N50, O10, O50, Z10working papers series
Date posted: June 12, 2008
© 2013 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
This page was processed by apollo2 in 0.859 seconds