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On December 23,2019, Cai Fang, vice president of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, wrote in a People's Daily article,\" Creating a second demographic dividend,\" arguing that to create a second demographic dividend, we should not only increase the savings rate, but also increase human capital to promote higher total factor productivity and maintain a higher return on investment. In the final analysis, raising human capital depends on education.
In response to this view, zhou tianyong, a professor at the central party school, published a paper entitled \"there is no chance of a second demographic dividend for economic growth in the case of overcapacity \", stressing that the national economy is a combination of supply and demand. Without human demand, there is no need for production and supply at all. The article asks, the population is reduced, the human needs are also reduced, then, the high-quality labor force and the creation of products and services, who will consume and enjoy?
Clearly, mr. tsai is focusing on the supply side of the economic cycle, and mr. zhou thinks the bigger problem is on the demand side. Although supply and demand are one and two sides, but compared to supply, demand is a more basic driving force. We also believe that the greater harm to the economy of ultra-low fertility is the decline in demand size and diversity, not in capital and labour shortages. This coincides with professor zhou tianyong.
In China's economic circles, Cai Fang is the main introducer of foreign theory of demographic dividend. According to this theory, as the fertility rate decreases and the dependency ratio decreases, a larger proportion of output can be used to accumulate, promote technological and industrial progress, and promote economic growth to reap the first demographic dividend. The so-called second demographic dividend is provided that people respond to the need to save more for the aged and secure the capital they need for economic growth.
These theories are favored by population controlists. In their view, a reduction in fertility would bring a first demographic dividend and promote economic development, while an ageing with a higher fertility rate would bring a second demographic dividend and further economic development. By this logic, low fertility is always good.
But low fertility is merely a sacrifice of long-term gain for short-term gain. Short-term lower child dependency ratio, increase per capita income, but long-term increase dependency ratio, reduce per capita income. And because the scale effect is weakened, after deducting the factors such as technological progress and urbanization, the later period will decrease more than the previous increase.
Therefore, the first demographic dividend from lower fertility rates is a boon, not to mention the large working population that preceded high fertility rates. Throughout history, economic growth does not need to be achieved by reducing fertility. The industrialization and rise of the West is accomplished against the backdrop of a population boom; as fertility declines, the West's growth rate has generally slowed.
And the second demographic dividend is more like far-fetched self-comfort in an aging crisis. According to the idea of the first demographic dividend, the second demographic dividend theory still emphasizes capital accumulation. But with the prospect of population ageing and shrinking, the economy's short board is a shrinking demand and lack of innovation, not a shortage of capital. Even with high savings rates, weak demand and innovation can lead to lower investment returns and lower eligibility prices. Europe and Japan already have negative interest rates, while China has overcapacity and declining marginal investment earnings. If the first demographic dividend grudgingly indicates the short-term benefits of eating out, the second demographic dividend is more like a walnut not needed in the desire to quench May's thirst.
Mr tsai, of course, doesn't talk too much about saving rates, but rather focuses on creating a second demographic dividend on education promotion. But the rise in education cannot be attributed to the demographic shift, and it is inappropriate to classify the economic growth as a second demographic dividend. Whether or not its argument holds true, the demographic dividend in its form stems from demographic shifts; the first from lower fertility and the second from ageing. But without aging, education will rise, perhaps even faster.
So is low fertility conducive to higher education? This may be true if there are too many children to build a school. But over the past 20 years, China has cut a large number of primary and secondary schools, partly because of the declining number of school-age children. From 1998 to 2018, the number of primary schools in the country decreased from 100 million to 100 million. In the same period, the number of primary schools in rural areas dropped from 610,000 to 160,000, and in urban areas from 10,000 to 10,000.
This also happens in first-tier cities with rapidly growing populations. From 1998 to 2018, the resident population of Beijing increased from 12.46 million to 21.54 million, while the number of primary schools fell from 2511 to 970. In fact, the proportion of school-age children in china's big cities is almost the bottom of the world's population, so these cities have tight educational resources, not because there are too many children, but because public education investment does not match.
So is the reduction of students and schools conducive to the optimization of educational resources? In fact, the so-called quality education resources left after the cut are only the legacy of a large population. This legacy-based optimization is passive and unsustainable, and it is more reasonable to increase investment to optimize educational resources. The key to good or bad schools depends on teachers and financial resources. Assuming that a city of one million people has two top-notch secondary schools, with its population falling to half a million, its best secondary schools are likely to have more faculty and financial resources than the average of the two best of the city's 1 million.
Liang Jianzhang, one of the authors of this article, asked Nobel laureate Becker in person what he thought of China's one-child policy in 1992. Becker asked if China had no time to build schools. When he learned that China was actually closing schools, he answered without thinking that it should stop. His argument was that the ability to develop talent should not reduce the population, since for all countries people were the most valuable, especially the educated.
Will low fertility help popularize college education? The latter is mainly a policy choice. As shown in figure 1, the number of Chinese university enrollment has steadily increased since 1990, but until 2000, the number of Chinese annual enrollment was still lower than that of India. From 1998 to 2008, although the number of Chinese college entrance examination age increased from 19.1 million to 28.06 million, the number of college entrances increased from 1.08 million to 5.99 million, and the enrollment rate rose from% to%. Mr. Tong, then an economist at the Asian Development Bank, suggested to the central government in November 1998 that universities should double their enrollment, one of the five reasons for which includes easing employment pressures. This may even be construed as a short-term employment pressure caused by the growth of the age-appropriate population, which may have contributed in part to the introduction of university enrollment expansion policies.
For economic development, population is both a demand-side consumer and a supply-side human capital. Although demand is the ultimate driving force of economic development, human capital is the key to determine economic efficiency and development level. Human capital can be measured in terms of quantity and quality. But in the long-term fertility restriction atmosphere, many people only focus on quality, but ignore the basic meaning of quantity. For example, in response to the sharp shrinking of the population in the future, there are often people who respond that quality is more important than quantity, and what's wrong with reducing quantity? The implication is that as long as there is quality, there is no need to care about quantity, even think that quality and quantity conflict.
But the relationship between quality and quantity is complementary, not contradictory. The power of a group depends on both quality and quantity. Under the same quality, human capital is proportional to quantity, because aggregation and scale effects may even show an accelerated proportional relationship, that is, double the quantity and more than double the overall strength. Therefore, a decline in population does not mean that quality will rise, and the actual situation is more likely to be the opposite. In this case, the shrinking of quantity is a double blow to the overall human capital, both reducing the number of individuals and reducing the average quality of individuals.
In modern science and technology and economic development, the pioneering contribution of a few outstanding talents cannot be ignored. This illustrates the importance of quantity. Talent is largely random, and no one knows which child is the next Jobs or Ren Zhengfei. God has given everyone an ability lottery, whether the lottery is printed genius is luck, and good education is the ability to cash the lottery. So how much genius eventually emerges depends on the size of a well-educated population.
The improvement of human capital quality is reflected in the improvement of knowledge and skills. Where there is a larger population, efficiency gains are usually higher. We analyzed the data of the place of origin of academicians of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and found that even after deducting the influence of economic development degree, the proportion of academicians in the provinces with higher population density was larger. The reason may be that, where the population is denser, education is more efficient and competitive, helping to stimulate human potential.
The United States is now the most technologically advanced country as a whole, largely attributable to the fact that the United States is the most populous of the developed countries. Although the population of the United States has always been smaller than that of China, the population of its college degree has long been higher than that of China, which is an important basis for the long-term leading of the United States in science and technology. But that has reversed in recent years; in terms of the number of researchers, China was less than half of the United States in 2000, now more than the United States, and in 20 years'time will be far ahead of the United States. Thanks to its huge talent scale, China has become a world leader in emerging areas such as high-speed rail, mobile communications and artificial intelligence.
China now has more than four times the population of the United States, but much of that advantage has been offset by America's integration with other English-speaking countries and its ability to embrace the world's elite. China's population has only grown more than threefold over the past 200 years, while the U.S. population has grown more than 30fold. In particular, China's population will soon enter negative growth and will accelerate its contraction, while the US population is expected to continue to grow. Even without considering the US's advantage in attracting immigrants, the gap in fertility between China and the United States would reduce China's population advantage over the United States by 40 per cent per generation. If China fails to raise its fertility significantly, it will lose its population advantage over the United States in two or three generations'time, with fewer people born in China than in the United States.
Heavy quality and lightweight are also commonly found in parenting concepts. Under the influence of long-term one-childization, having one child has become the default choice for many families, and it has almost become a consensus to have fewer sperms. But there is no clear academic conclusion about the long-term impact of the one-child state on the child. Some believe that the only child can get more care and investment, and thus better results, but others believe that the only child lacks sibling interaction and is more likely to be spoiled by the elders, and therefore has a relatively withdrawn personality, willfulness, sensitivity, lack of hard-working, adventurous and team spirit.
When there is only one child, the family's hope and input will be focused on the child, do not lose in the starting line will become the default psychology. But if everyone steals and sprints ahead of time, it's just an increase in individual pressure that won't do the whole thing any good. If the average of two or three children per family, people may not be so anxious, parenting may be more relaxed, the child may be more stamina.
From a social point of view, the average contribution of a child to human capital is not greater than that of many children. From within the family, an only child's performance, even if better than the average child from a multi-child family, is lower than the one with the best scores of multiple children. To verify the above judgment, we used the results of the IQ test to represent the results, and compared the IQ differences of one child and many children according to the IQ correlation between family members.
under co-living conditions, the iq correlation between parents and children is, whereas the correlation between siblings is (kaufman,2009). According to this can compare high IQ one-child families and upper-middle IQ multi-child families. The high IQ family here refers to the highest 1% of the parents'IQ in the population, while the middle and upper IQ family refers to the 19% of the parents'IQ in the population. Assuming that a high-iq family has one child and a middle-and upper-iq family has three, and that the IQ of a family member is multivariateally normal, then on average, the only child in a high-IQ family has a lower IQ than the smartest of the three children in a middle-and upper-IQ family. In other words, to cultivate outstanding talent, fewer and better parenting methods do not match the quantitative advantage. One more child, one more hope.
This does not take into account the interaction between children in multi-child families and the influence of factors such as parental experience accumulation. One of the authors of the article, mr. huang, was a colleague of his department at harvard, tsai tianxi, who was born in 1977 and earned a phd from harvard university at the age of 22 before becoming the youngest professor at harvard. She is from a small town in Zhejiang, the youngest child of her parents, with five brothers on it. Five brothers and sisters in the family received a doctorate and one master's degree. Father cai xiao night is known as a talent \"magician \", has his own experience of raising children as\" my career is a father \"a book. If another 20 years later, mr cai can only raise a maximum of two children, his experience as a father is not much use.
In response to the proposal to fully liberalize fertility, some argue that this will increase the number of poor families and affect future development. This view is difficult to support by empirical data. In fact, China's average family children's IQ, hard-working degree is in the world's forefront, Chinese families are not only a loss to China, but also to the world. Moreover, the fertility willingness in China's rural areas is far lower than in the West, and it is a good thing for poor families to have more. Besides, as long as the opportunity is fair, the contribution of poor children to society may not be small. Like epoch-making figures such as galileo, newton, and watt are from poor backgrounds; and prominent statesmen such as lincoln and franklin in american history are from poor backgrounds, especially franklin, who invented the lightning rod and worked on the declaration of independence, was the 17th child of his father.
No matter how high the education level and social status are, the urban residents of China are mostly from poor families in rural areas for generations. Because in the early years only rich children had the opportunity to receive formal education, there were few outstanding scientists in modern China. But the popularity of education in new china has changed this by bringing talent from poor families to the fore.
The selection of astronauts is one in a million, and the physical, intellectual, intellectual and personality requirements are extremely strict. We have analyzed the origins of the 10 astronauts who have entered space in China. With the exception of Yang Liwei and Liu Yang from ordinary teachers and workers'families, the remaining eight are from peasant families, half of whom are poor. Nie Haisheng ranked 6th among the eight siblings. After his father died, his mother raised her child by doing farm work. Zhai Zhigang is the youngest of six siblings, and his mother sold fried melon seeds for him to finish primary school and junior high school. Liu Boming ranked No.2 among the six siblings, as a child to the meadow on the pig, summer vacation to the brick factory to work. In Jing Haipeng's memory, the family did not eat food when they were children; their parents were working for the production team, tied brooms for money to keep their families from starving.
These families are very poor and have raised their children through their own efforts, raising outstanding astronauts for the country. These stand-out astronauts not only made outstanding contributions to the country, but also brought glory and benefits to the family.
It is millions of hard-working, ordinary and even poor families who support Chinese society and make China rise rapidly after reform and opening up. Lee wrote in his memoir that China would do better than Singapore to catch up. The singaporeans, he said, were only descendants of farmers in fujian, guangdong and other places who were illiterate and had no land, while china was full of descendants of d'artists and literati who stayed in the central plains. Lee Kuan Yew, one of the world's most visionary politicians, has deep confidence in the quality of China's population. His former leader, Singapore, made up of the descendants of countless poor peasants, is now among the most developed countries in the world and has the highest population quality in the world.
Cai Fang mentioned in the article that the human capital embodied in the skills and entrepreneurial ability of workers, fundamentally speaking, depends on the development of education to achieve overall improvement. This is certainly true, but china has more than half of its college enrollment and has limited potential to continue to rise. Although free compulsory education is only nine years old, the energy and cost of Chinese families in basic education make China's overall investment in education a lot; the listed companies engaged in supplementary education in China are leading in quantity and quality in the world.
In our view, the bigger problem of education in China is that the burden and inefficiency of examination-oriented education are exhausting parents. To this end, we propose to abolish the entrance examination, combine junior high school and high school, reduce the 12 years from primary to high school to 10 years, and extend compulsory education to 10 years to universal high school education. Now the third grade and senior high school period, mainly used to review the examination. By eliminating the middle school entrance examination and diluting the college entrance examination to shorten the two-year secondary education will not affect the learning process, but can improve efficiency. If girls graduate from 19-20 years old,22-23 years old master's degree, two or three years ahead of time to enter the society, there will be more time to love, marry, raise children, better balance career and family.
Cai Fang recommended extending compulsory education to cover pre-primary education. We accept very well that we have mentioned similar suggestions before. According to a 2015 survey by the National Health and Family Planning Commission, the rate of children aged 0 to 3 is only 4%, much lower than 50%of some developed countries. The burden of raising families would be greatly reduced if the Government led the construction of a large number of child care centres and allowed permanent parents to send their children free of charge.
But mr tsai's goal in the article is to make the number of children born as close as possible to the family's fertility willingness under the policy. Mr. Cai didn't say there was something wrong with fertility restrictions, and he was too optimistic about the demographic situation. According to the National Health and Family Planning Commission's 2017 National Fertility Survey, the average number of ideal children and the number of intended children of Chinese women of childbearing age from 2006 to 2016 are respectively and. South korea, which has a much higher fertility willingness than this, now has a lower actual fertility rate. Why should there be any reason to think that a painless policy can bring china's fertility rate close to its willingness? Moreover, to sustain the nation's sustainable reproduction, fertility must reach at least the replacement level, rather than what mr tsai has previously mentioned as unfounded.
All in all, China's far more serious problem than higher education is ultra-low fertility. Too much needs to be done to raise fertility. We have also consistently recommended reducing the burden of raising families through the reduction of personal income tax for higher-income families and the direct payment of parental benefits to lower-income families.
China's birthrate is facing rapid contraction as the two-child policy ends with a sharp shrinking population of child-bearing age and falling fertility. China's vast population is an endowment that rivals admire, but this precious advantage is weakening at an unprecedented pace. Although the rise in education, combined with technological advances and urbanization, still leaves room for the economy to rise, these effects are not related to population size. If the population does not decline, these effects will only be more powerful. Thus, the effect of higher levels of education on economic growth is no justification for downplaying the ultra-low fertility crisis.