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The Neolithic Origins of Contemporary Variations in Life Expectancy

40 Pages Posted: 28 Oct 2007 Last revised: 14 Mar 2008

Oded Galor

Brown University - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Omer Moav

University of Warwick - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: October 26, 2007

Abstract

This research advances an evolutionary theory and provides empirical evidence that shed new light on the origins of contemporary differences in life expectancy across countries. The theory suggests that social, economic and environmental changes that were associated with the Neolithic Revolution affected the nature of the environmental hazards confronted by the human population, triggering an evolutionary process that had a significant impact on human longevity. The empirical analysis shows that a significant portion of contemporary variations in life expectancy across countries can be traced to the differences in the time passed since the ancestors of the population of each country experienced the Neolithic Revolution.

Keywords: Life Expectancy, Growth, Technological Progress, Evolution, Natural Selection, Malthusian Stagnation

JEL Classification: I12, J13, N3, O10

Suggested Citation

Galor, Oded and Moav, Omer, The Neolithic Origins of Contemporary Variations in Life Expectancy (October 26, 2007). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1012650 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1012650

Oded Galor (Contact Author)

Brown University - Department of Economics ( email )

Providence, RI 02912
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.brown.edu/fac/Oded_Galor/

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

77 Bastwick Street
London, EC1V 3PZ
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.brown.edu/fac/Oded_Galor/

Omer Moav

University of Warwick - Department of Economics ( email )

Coventry CV4 7AL
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/staff/academic/moav

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

77 Bastwick Street
London, EC1V 3PZ
United Kingdom

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