The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

Growth Take-Offs

  • Matthias Doepke
Reference work entry


Following a phase of near-constant living standards lasting from Stone Age until the onset of the Industrial Revolution, a large number of countries have experienced growth takeoffs, in which stagnation gives way to sustained economic growth. What causes some countries to enter a growth takeoff while others remain poor? We discuss three mechanisms that can trigger a growth takeoff in a country previously trapped in poverty: fertility decline, structural change, and accelerating technological progress.


Child labour Demographic transition Economic growth Fertility Fixed factors Growth takeoffs Human capital Income–population feedback Industrial revolution Land Malthus’s theory of population Mortality Nutrition and development Population growth Productivity growth Skill-intensive technology Stagnation Structural change Technological progress Women’s work 

JEL Classification

D4 D10 
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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthias Doepke
    • 1
  1. 1.