Economic Benefits Of Longer Lives

Robert Fogel will be speaking in Berkeley later this month on the economic implications of increasing healthy life span and better medicine over the course of the 20th century. A choice quote: "Fogel argued in a recent lecture that assessments of economic gains over the past 130 years should include the 50-percent likelihood that a U.S. student today will reach the age of 100 'in good health.'" This is, of course, a very conservative projection given current research trends. Increased life span brings greater opportunities for wealth and further increases in life span: "The advances in the first half of the 20th century have been greatly underestimated because economists have concentrated on wealth but ignored gains in health and longevity."



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