Human Capital: Fertility, and Growth (Lecture 19 of 19) University of Chicago | Spring 2010

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This the nineteenth and final lecture in the "Lectures on Human Capital" series by Gary Becker. This series of lectures recorded during the Spring of 2010 are from ECON 343 - Human Capital, a class taught every year by Gary Becker at the University of Chicago. In this class, Becker expounds upon the theory of Human Capital that he helped create and for which he won the Nobel Prize. Please see attached lecture notes, video annotations, and reading list for more information.


Professor Becker presents a model that studies the interaction between fertility and human capital investment. His model is a rational choice one in which parents choose to spend their income in consumption, number of children, and human capital per child.

He explains how parents' make their decisions and explain how the shadow prices of the choice variables involved in this problem span a convex budget constraint. Professor Becker explains why the value of time has grown as countries have developed and how this has to do with the endogeneity of the shadow prices of the choice variables.

Key concepts: convex budget constraint, endogenous prices, fertility, human capital investment, shadow prices.

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