The Cultural Diffusion of the Fertility Transition: Evidence from Internal Migration in 19th Century France

52 Pages Posted: 1 Jun 2016

See all articles by Guillaume Daudin

Guillaume Daudin

OFCE - Sciences Po

Raphael Franck

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Department of Economics

Hillel Rapoport

Bar-Ilan University - Department of Economics; Stanford University

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Abstract

France experienced the demographic transition before richer and more educated countries. This paper offers a novel explanation for this puzzle that emphasizes the diffusion of culture and information through internal migration. It tests how migration affected fertility by building a decennial bilateral migration matrix between French regions for 1861-1911. The identification strategy uses exogenous variation in transportation costs resulting from the construction of railways. The results suggest the convergence towards low birth rates can be explained by the diffusion of low-fertility norms by migrants, especially by migrants to and from Paris.

Keywords: fertility, France, demographic transition, migration

JEL Classification: J13, N33, O15

Suggested Citation

Daudin, Guillaume and Franck, Raphael and Rapoport, Hillel, The Cultural Diffusion of the Fertility Transition: Evidence from Internal Migration in 19th Century France. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9945. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2786029

Guillaume Daudin (Contact Author)

OFCE - Sciences Po ( email )

69 Quai d'Orsay
Paris, 75007
France

HOME PAGE: http://web.mac.com/gdaudin

Raphael Franck

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Department of Economics ( email )

Mount Scopus
Jerusalem, 91905
Israel

Hillel Rapoport

Bar-Ilan University - Department of Economics ( email )

Ramat-Gan, 52900
Israel
+972 3 535 3180 (Fax)

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

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